Jeremy Saulnier’s certainly got an interesting style hasn’t he? Sure, the action/thriller everyman hero against impossible odds is nothing new, but throw in excessive gore and amp up the idiocy of the characters, and you have the oddly offbeat, grippingly tense world of a Saulnier thriller. I haven’t seen Murder Party, but Blue Ruin and Green Room, as well as rhyming titles, share these traits, as well as actor Macon (is that pronounced like Mason or Bacon?) Blair.
I loved Green Room. Absolutely loved it.
Without giving away too much (a thriller’s all about the twists, innit it?), Anton Yelchin (RIP) stars as the lead man of an on-the-rocks punk band who ends up playing for a neo-Nazi club. After going out of their way to piss the Nazis off, playing a song titled “Nazi Punks F*ck Off,” they bear witness to a violent murder, and are trapped by Macon Blair, under the lie that they’ll be let go. They take a club bouncer hostage in the titular green room for self-preservation, and are trapped in a deadly game against Patrick Stewart and his band of well-armed Nazis, armed only with a singular pistol, one band member’s jiu-jitsu, and their own (admittedly limited) ingenuity.
Green Room is perfect. It’s white-knuckled, edge of your seat thrills from the murder to the finish line. It’s gory, surprising action, impossible situations, and fine performances, including a surprisingly not unbearable Imogen Poots.
The late Yelchin displayed his talents in one of his last roles before his untimely death. He was a great genre actor, and fits in perfectly here.
Poots is fine. I normally find her annoying.
Patrick Stewart’s role is brief, but he shines. It’s nothing substantial, nothing particularly nuanced, but he has presence, he has pathos, and he does great.
Green Room is a satisfying thrill ride with fine performances, excellent direction, a solid premise and spectacular action, earning an A+.