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|“||It's a game. It's a process of elimination. The last man standing gets to walk out of here alive. Between the kid and the pregnant girl, I'm sure it's most likely gonna come down to one of them in the end.||„|
|~ Eric to the other captives.|
|“||You're gonna have to decide for yourselves. I Can't do it for you. You don't have much time.||„|
|~ Eric tricking Katie and the pregnant woman.|
|“||Of course. All that... all that for nothing? All that. What's the matter, huh? What? I'm not good enough for you? What? I'm not the one that you wanted? I'm exactly the same as everybody else in here! They all got to make their own choices! They chose to kill each other. That's what you wanted to see, right, huh? Well, there you go, congratulations. We're assholes.||„|
|~ Eric revealing his villainous manor as the last man alive.|
Eric is the hidden main antagonist of the 2015 thriller movie, Circle.
He is portrayed by Michael Nardelli.
A woman wakes up in a crowded room full of people. She begins to panic. Another young guy speaks up and warns her not to move and tries to calm her down. As she panics, another woman wakes up, the young guy yet again reassures them of what he knows. Suddenly, every one else awakens, and hysteria is evident throughout the large group. The guy shouts for people to calm down, but most ignore him. Some listen, some are instantly killed when stepping off their circle.
One guy figures out that whoever dies is controlled by their hands, seemingly 'voting' for who should die next. Around 5 people are killed before a young guy steps up and announces that they should kill the older people (6) to buy them 10 minutes of time to discuss what is going on. The older victims beg for their lives and cry as they are wiped out one by one. One man tries to lie and say that he saw 'wet black aliens' in a bid to buy some time. The group does not believe him and he is killed.
The guy that suggested the older people die targets a woman with Cancer, accusing her of 'not being 52' and other members of the group join in to defend her when he says 'cancer or not, she will still die next'. One guy says that anyone over 35 should have a problem with this guy. The noise that starts the voting begins and the young guy realises he will be killed. He begs for his life but is killed by almost everyone in the room.
People start to try and figure out what is going on. The lady that has Cancer says everyone should talk to each other and try to make sense of the situation. The group decides that 'no names' is an easier way to communicate after the lady that starts telling them about her life in detail is suddenly killed. A man points out that his wife is standing next to him. Another man says he knows someone standing in front of him as well. A policeman points out that he recognises a man that 'beat the shit' out of his girlfriend. Everyone asks if the domestic abuse is true and he admits it. He is killed after a confrontation with the cop.
After several minorities are quickly eliminated, an African-American man claims the process has become racist. Several others dispute this, but when the cop, who is white, goes on a racist rant, he is selected next. They attempt to vote for everyone equally, but one man votes for the pregnant woman, so a man identified as Eric votes for him. They tie, and the man is killed in a run-off vote. Intrigued, the captives experiment with voting. They find they cannot vote for themselves, and all ties must be resolved, meaning that one of the final two people left must volunteer to die or else both will die. After several volunteer to die, a skeptical faction led by an atheist and an Asian kid antagonizes the theists who praised the volunteers' faith. The atheist is briefly saved, but when he identifies a pretty girl beside him as a porn star, which she denies, he is killed. A lesbian becomes a target, but the lawyer who argued strongest for her selection is killed instead.
When several eliminations happen, two main blocs emerge: one that wants to protect the pregnant woman and a young girl, and another that wants to eliminate them immediately as a threat to their survival. A soldier, a one-armed man, and Eric argue everyone should sacrifice themselves to save the girl and pregnant woman for last, while a faction led by a rich man argues that everyone is equal, and no special privileges should be afforded to anyone. The husband is forced to vote with the soldier's bloc when they threaten to eliminate his wife, but, under interrogation, they admit they concocted the relationship to curry favor. They are both eliminated, and the two factions aggressively thin their opponents' numbers.
Eventually, only Eric, the pregnant woman, a silent man who has never voted, and the girl are left. Eric theorizes that aliens have used the process to learn about humanity's values. After eliminating the silent man, Eric encourages the girl to join him in suicide. As she dies, Eric quickly votes to kill the pregnant woman. Eric ties with the pregnant woman's unborn child, whom he votes to kill. Eric wakes in Los Angeles where he joins a group of people watching a fleet of hovering alien craft. The group is disproportionately made up of pregnant women and children.
Eric was seemingly an intelligent, kindhearted young man. He was the first one to protect the Young Pregnant Woman and the Little Girl, and he's the one who discovers the plan by the pragmatists who want to kill the Young Pregnant Woman and the Little Girl and rallies a group of people to protect them. However, Eric turned out to be a master manipulator who effortlessly played everyone and won his survival.
One thing that helps Eric get so far in the circle is that he intelligently observes all the actions and interactions of the different players. He spots the man who votes for the Young Pregnant Woman from across the room, and he quickly picks up on the fact that the pragmatists had formed an alliance to kill those protecting the Little Girl and the Young Pregnant Woman.
- Eric's name is never mentioned in the film, however, it is revealed in the credits.