Green Room (2016)
Tickets & Showtimes
as Big Justin
as Cop 1
as Punk Rocker
as Hockey Mom
as Stage Hand
as Redneck Attendee at ...
as Metalhead #1
as Twin #1
as Twin #2
News & Interviews for Green Room
Critic Reviews for Green Room
Rarely has a film captured the terror of imminent bloodshed with this kind of frenzied, animalistic intensity.
As a survival tale with wickedly nasty violence and pitch-black humour, Green Room is a red hot success.
Saulnier revels in the primal nastiness of what the will to live looks like in the most dire of circumstances while also infusing the film with a level of visual artistry and black humor that suggests he is capable of much more.
Where Blue Ruin announced Saulnier, Green Room is his career breakthrough.
Saulnier's quiet dynamic ratchets up the tension before bursts of horror-like mayhem make clear that they are fighting merely to stay alive, not to make a point.
Audience Reviews for Green Room
Director Jeremy Saulnier is no stranger to letting his mind roam free on the sets of his films, creating an experience like any other for hardcore film fans. In his darkest feature yet, "Green Room" follows a punk rock band as they are struggling to find gigs to make money. When a friend helps them out, they end up in the middle of the woods at what would later be called a "movement" instead of a club. beign caught up in the wrong place at the wrong time, they encounter the aftermath of a murder backstage. Locked in a room, they must begin to realize they may have to start killing in order to survive. "Green Room" is brutal and grotesque to say the least, but does the story back that up?
This films' story holds up well for the first act, keeping you much more intrigued that one might expect from a film like this, but act two and three quickly derail the film in my opinion. From a slow burning horror/thriller, "Green Room" subverts itself by becoming a slaughter-fest. This film is being praised for it's originality, and while the main set-up is fresh, the rest of the film feels rushed. Characters are killed within seconds and never referenced again, and motivations seem to be very jumbled.
Average moviegoers go to horror films to either be genuinely terrified or to laugh at how bad/cliched the horror aspect is. The horror aspect just was not present for me in any way here, and it played out as strictly a slasher/thriller. Anton Yelchin and Imogen Poots were the standouts here, and yes I am choosing to leave out Patrick Stewart. Sure, he delivers a solid performance as always, but his character seemed to be present only to add a creepy undertone to the film or to keep suspense. While neither of those is a bad thing to add to a horror film, that is all is character was, so I did not care if they were able to take him out or not in the end.
When the film opens, you get a real sense of who these people are and I cared about them once the inciting incident occurred, but to me, the most interesting portions of the film were over by that point. The rest of the film relies too heavily on gross-out gore and violence. If that drives a story it can work wonders for a horror film, but "Green Room" really is just a band stuck in a room who needs to escape and possibly have to kill some people along the way. Almost every character seems like a throwaway to me and I lost interest by the final few scenes.
It may seem like I am tearing this film apart, but I am not going to give it a completely negative grade. Like I said, I loved watching the first act and it does a great job setting up what is to come in the film, but what comes is pretty underwhelming in my opinion. This film had the potential to delve into extremely dark themes, and with a story like this one, it is disappointing that it loses some of it's steam. "Green Room" is all promise and few payoffs.
At first the band tries to calmly talk their way out of a sticky situation, but their negotiations fail. Now it's punks vs. skinheads in an all out game of cat and mouse. The drama begins intelligently with words but morbidly ends with slaughter. What are the stakes? There is an assortment of random human beings, but character development is anemic at best. Without that emotional connection, our desire to even give a care is severely diminished. Director Jeremy Saulnier relies on rising tension and it works for awhile. However after 60 minutes, the dialogue becomes less needed to further developments. Gore emerges as the story in the final third. Le carnage extraordinaire is the ultimate agenda for the day. People are sliced, diced and mutilated with guns, machetes and killer dogs. It's competently done I suppose, but it's not as terrifying as the intense standoff that came before it. It's exactly what I expected would happen and after Blue Ruin, I expect more from Mr. Saulnier.
Green Room does not try to reinvent the slaughterhouse movies that inspire it. Rather, it embraces what has worked about the genre in the past: the macabre nature of the setting, the brutality, and the ensemble of characters that have to experience the insanity as it unfolds. That said, to simply call Green Room another slaughterhouse movie is selling it short. This is an incredibly well made film, one that is paced expertly, shot beautifully, and written intelligently. Although this movie certainly embraces its B-Movie roots, there is also an incredibly intelligent filmmaker behind the relentlessness, one that manages to make the movie transcend what is usually expected from this genre. This is a movie that is not only incredibly tense and fun, but it's also one with deeper implications about artists and how they view their work as the "end-all, be-all" of their lives. Sure, perhaps this film doesn't reinvent the genre, but it is one of the best examples of it in recent memory. It is my favorite movie of 2016 so far.
Discuss Green Room on our Movie forum!