Green Room (2015)
This Indie-style film was released to many rave reviews in magazines and on blogs, and some critics loved it too. Sold as a ‘Horror’ film, it soon developed a cult following. Despite this, it lost a great deal of money, as the box-office public decided not to bother with it. I also decided to give it a miss, until it appeared on a free TV Film channel recently. The cast interested me; a couple of reasonably well-known British actors, Joe Cole, and Imogen Poots, and the American Anton Yelchin, who I had at least heard of. Then there was Patrick Stewart, the famous British thespian. Yes, that one.
I thought that if he was in it, then it must be worth watching.
A grungy-looking Punk Rock band are touring around the north-west of America. They are making little money, sleeping in their car, and getting nowhere fast. On the verge of going home, they are offered a gig for $350 that will at least buy them enough petrol for the trip. They drive up to the Portland area, and discover the afternoon venue is a neo-Nazi skinhead club, little more than a huge shed on the compound of some decidedly unpleasant-looking men. But the gig goes well, and they get paid. Just about to leave, one of the band stumbles over the body of a dead girl in the ‘green room’ of the title, and events take a nasty turn.
The five are locked in the room, and the owner of the club (Stewart) is sent for, to decide what to do with them. Meanwhile, the terrified youngsters discover a huge underground heroin factory below the club, and realise that it is all a front for a well-organised drug-dealing gang. Things go downhill very rapidly as the band members fight for survival against an ever-growing number of skinhead thugs.
So, in my opinion, it’s not a ‘Horror’ film. It is a crime/murder film, with the second half taking on a classic ‘revenge’ element. There is a lot of violence, a theme of constant threat and dread, and most of it is shot in one or two shabby rooms, or outside in near-darkness. That makes it tiring to watch, (for me) as the director decided to use ‘natural lighting’ conditions for effect. And the music, when the band play their gigs, is just bloody awful!
There is nothing new or fresh in this film. The villains are villainous, and I found it hard to have any sympathy for the victims, to be honest. There is absolutely no point to the story, except to serve as a showcase for violence and fear, plus all of the acting is below average, and that’s being kind. Patrick Stewart plays the role of the criminal boss as if he is on stage at The National as King Lear, and I was left wondering what the hell he was doing in such a nasty film.
Honestly, do what the American public did.