By Adam Ray Palmer
Today’s review is a horror-thriller that’s helmed by a few Hollywood A-listers trying to escape neo-Nazi skinheads from killing them – yep!
Directed by a man who knows his way around a horror-thriller, Green Room stars
Patrick Stewart, Anton Yelchin and the talented Imogen Poots.
The independent horror has been made on a shoe-string budget so it’s heavily relying on the experienced cast and ‘shot caller’…
Green Room is set on a band straying into a secluded part of the Pacific Northwest, they stumble onto a horrific act of violence and as they are the only witnesses, they become the targets of a terrifying gang of skinheads who want to make sure all the evidence is eliminated.
Patrick Stewart is the kingpin of the villainous group. He heads a witch-hunt to kill the out-of-town musicians who have reluctantly got themselves in a spot of bother. Stewart runs a bar where neo-Nazis come to drink, scrap and unluckily, murder too. Anton Yelchin plays the lead guitarist in the band ‘Ain’t Right’ who have a gig at Stewart’s dodgy bar. Once Imogen Poots and her friend enter the club, everything changes. We flash-forward five minutes and Poots’ friend is dead and now the skinheads want to kill the band too.
I know what you’re thinking, that escalated quickly *insert Anchorman gif here!* Green Room is very much an old-fashioned style of horror-thriller. From scene one, it reveals little details about the central protagonists and effectively tells you in which order the characters die. It follows the standard horror prototype where the ‘loud mouth’ gets killed off first, the ‘scaredy-cat’ goes next and it keeps going until the final ‘heroic’ character is left – in this case, Anton Yelchin.
The make-up of the film is fine in terms of the structure. The audience quickly understand that Green Room follows the usual horror method of eliminating characters until there’s a final blood-thirsty showdown. However, where Green Room lets itself down is the actual narrative. We have no idea what is going on and why. The band stumble across a murder scene but it is never explained why that happened, it is never explained why the club is neo-Nazi-based and you also never see the murderer of the first victim again. The film is so disjointed.
Even in the second act, more than twenty skinheads just leave the bar with the band hauled up inside with just two young members left to kill them. We obviously know the band will get past those two idiots. The writing is so sloppy. To be fair, by the second act, you already make your mind up about the film being nonsensical. You end just watching to see what sick deaths come next like a Final Destination film.
The acting involved is poor on the whole. Imogen Poots is the only saviour in that department. She is fragile yet has an evil streak, it’s intriguing to see what random act she'll do next. Patrick Stewart is wasted in Green Room. His talent isn’t utilised at all and he ends up being a luke-warm villain. He very rarely comes across as threatening, even when he orders his crew around, he doesn’t ever look like someone to fear. As for Anton Yelchin - what a strange performance. He whines throughout with his ripped-up arm and he relies heavily on Imogen Poots to dig him out of trouble. His voice is that annoying that I wish she would just do the honours for the gang. You just can't avoid his Steve-O sound; give the man a lozenge.
It’s safe to say the film could have been better delivered. It’s an interesting concept but the plot never delves deep enough. It could have been an intelligent thriller but it loses its way. If it wasn’t for Imogen Poots, Green Room would be a total write-off.
Cineroom’s Rating: 2 Stars
Green Room is tomorrow (13th May 2016) in selected cinemas around the UK – certificate 18
From Adam Ray Palmer, the Editor-in-Chief.
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