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Cast: Mike Dwyer, Keith David, Katie Keene, Seth Hammond.

Director: Nicholas Bushman

Genre: Horror/Thriller

Year: 2017

Rating: NR

Small-town crook Cody (Dwyer) was at the end of his rope when a mysterious stranger offered him the chance of his life. There was just one catch - in this game he would have to wager everything, including his life. Cody finds himself trapped amongst a band of outsiders and misfits - all fighting for their lives and a slice of the American dream. Fueled by a horde of masked sadists, Cody and the others will win a fortune or die a brutal death.

'Union Furnace' tells the story of Cody, a petty thief living in a small town. He is going nowhere and his options are slim. The story is also about a group of sadists. This is where Lion comes in, he meets Cody and promises him a chance to become very rich. Lion seems to be the recruiter for the group as well as the voice when the games actually begin.

Once Cody agrees to take part he gets to meet the seven other people who will be trying to win the big money as well. The game itself consists of seven games that they all must play in order to win the big prize. What starts off as an easy board game slowly moves to more dangerous and life threatening games.

'Union Furnace' is a slow-moving thriller that replies more on atmosphere and mood than its actual killings which are tame compared to today's standards. The film also replies on its cast and they all do a great job playing their characters. Especially the eight actors playing the participates in the game. They do a fantastic job displaying fear and desperation. Among the stand-outs was Mike Dwyer who plays Cody, Seth Hammond who plays Lion and the always amazing Keith David.

Director, Nicholas Bushman co-wrote the film with Mike Dwyer does a great job keeping the audience interested and the film moving at a nice pace. 'Union Furnace' is gripping, grim thriller and it shows the desperation and greed in people. It is both thought-provoking and engaging.

I am not going to sit here and give away plot details because this is one of those films that is better seen. The less you know about it the better. The film was made in 2015 and it puzzles me why it took so long to get released. This is definitely an Independent gem that has a captivating story and performances that take the film to a whole other level. 'Union Furnace' will be released on Aug. 15, 2017 on Blu-ray and on DVD. They both come with Special Features that include:

MAKING-OF, a behind-the-scenes look at the production of UNION FURNACE, featuring interviews from the cast and crew of the film.

If you are looking for something different to watch this is definitely worth checking out. I expect this to be a sleeper hit from strong word of mouth.

Released by Metropol Pictures

**** Out Of *****