Friday, July 15, 2016

Now on Amazon Prime: Green Room (2016)

Green Room movie posterGreen Room (2016) - Written and Directed by Jeremy Saulnier; Starring Anton Yelchin, Patrick Stewart, Imogen Poots, Alia Shawkat.

By Kenny Howell

Late in Jeremy Saulnier's Green Room, one of the characters who will remain nameless says that the situation they have gotten themselves into is "a nightmare."

That is a perfect description of Saulnier's follow up to his well-received Blue Ruin, a film I thought was a little all over the place tonally, but a gem of an idea.

Green Room, unlike his first film, is tight and haunting. It follows a punk rock band on the road who are desperate for a gig. After a show goes bust, and they are left without money to keep going, the guy that screwed them sets them up with a new gig. Problem is that it is at a remote Neo-Nazi bar.

They play their show, opening with an anti-Nazi song, which doesn't get them off on the right foot. But what happens after sends them into hell. The group come across a murdered girl in the green room, and the murderers still at the scene. Surprise, it's the Neo-Nazis. The group is trapped in the room, negotiating with the man who owns the bar, a menacing older man named Darcy, brilliantly played by Patrick Stewart.

The film is over the top, but not unrealistic. That makes it all the horrifying, and the violence makes this pretty much a horror film. It's a little hard to stomach at times, but if you can, Green Room is a crazy spiral downward where everything just falls apart. It's also bittersweet, as it is one of the last times we get to see the talent of Anton Yelchin (Star Trek Into Darkness), who tragically passed away in an accident recently.

Green Room is now streaming on Amazon Prime.

Rating: ***1/2

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