Holy fucking shit!
As much as I loved Blue Ruin, there was a small part of me that was worried Jeremy Saulnier wouldn’t be able to live up to his previous effort with this movie. Fortunately, this film managed to leave me stunned.
If there is a singular phrase I could use to describe both Blue Ruin and Green Room, it would be “Jeremy Saulnier films that both have colours in the title.” But if I were to offer a second phrase to describe both these movies, it would be “painfully tense.”
Green Room’s premise is very simple; a punk band booked to play at a far-right skinhead club happen apon a murder scene and, as a result, the club owner now wants them killed so that there were no witnesses.
The bulk of the movie, as the name implies, is set in the green room of the club – as well as a couple of other rooms. Some could draw comparisons with Tarantino’s Hateful Eight, except that movie has the ever-saving aspect of Tarantino’s dialogue, which is hard to ever find boring.
This movie has nothing quite as snappy, nor does it really have any levity. What really makes this movie work is the constant feeling of impending dread, along with the full knowledge that the characters aren’t going to be saved by tropes or dramatic conveniences.
This is a film that plays with your expectations and, while I really don’t want to spoil anything about this movie, I can promise you that this film won’t play out like most other thrillers.
The real standout performance of the film is, predictably, Patrick Stewart. While everyone left me impressed (Anton Yelchin and Imogen Poots had some great back and forth chemistry), Stewart’s very calm and calculated villain character managed to be chilling but also totally believable.
Without a doubt, I recommend this film. Just don’t go expecting a fun little popcorn flick.