No reason to start learning how to play an instrument now. So this is about a struggling punk rock band. They get booked for a somewhat promising (albeit sketchy) gig, but they have the unfortunate timing of walking into the green room and seeing a corpse left from a previous band. How will everything work out? I like the horror genre, and I appreciate this movie. Skinheads just make for good villains, and they are usually plentiful in whatever movie they pop up in. I feel like Green Room does have a few problems, but for the most part, I think genre lovers are going to respond positively to this.
It’s also one of the late Anton Yelchin’s final roles to check out.
I did personally go through a small bit of a punk rock phase in my earlier years, but I have long since grown out of it. It’s just so dingy and just loud, I don’t really connect with it any longer. But regardless, while that certainly plays a role here, it’s not largely what this movie is about. This a survival horror movie, and it is about this band trying to outsmart the owner and employees of this establishment, which is difficult, given the fact that they are contained to this small room and don’t know the lay of the land. It’s a pretty simple story, but it stays tense. You don’t feel like you really get to know these people, and the story would have had stronger legs to stand on if it took the time to establish the characters of the individuals who make up this band. It would have carried more emotional weight if you cared about who made it and who didn’t, but that’s neither here nor there, because I’m talking about a movie that doesn’t exist.
It’s a situation that you can’t help but react to and say, “well that sucks.”
I did also have issues with this from a technical level, specifically with the lighting. It’s not really any major spoiler to tell you that the power gets cut at a point in the movie. When that happens, it gets very difficult to see what exactly is happening, and I understand that the lights are out, but you still need to be able to suss out what is happening, especially in a fight, otherwise it is just a comes across as jumbled and incoherent. I feel like I liked this better on paper than the actual execution of it, which is a shame, because this movie is full of potential. I did really enjoy seeing Patrick Stewart in this bizarre skinhead villain role, and I’ve never seen him even attempt to do something quite like this. If you’re interested in this, you should check it out, but if you don’t think this is for you based on the plot description, it isn’t.
Green Room (2015) ***
– Critic for Hire