Green Room, film review: ‘Patrick Stewart stars in punks v skinheads’

Patrick Stewart stars in Green Room

Patrick Stewart stars in Green Room - Credit: Archant

A desperate, down on their luck punk band take a gig at a backwoods, skinhead, white supremacists’ club, run by Darcy (Stewart).

After a confrontational but successful set, they find themselves locked into a desperate fight for survival after an unfortunate mishap after their performance.

Punks v skinheads led by Patrick Stewart is a premise that you would expected be treated as gory comic horror, something in the manner of From Dusk to Dawn.

But the latest from the director of the highly regarded thriller, Blue Ruin, puts on a serious and sombre face.

Not that there aren’t moment of humour in it – this is a film where Patrick Stewart gets to play Mr. Darcy after all – but the audience I saw it with didn’t seem to be in a mood to take that on board.

The movie takes its cues from its lead villain. Once Darcy has decided that the punks are a problem that need to be eliminated, he goes about it in a cold, methodical, ruthless way and the film is just as efficient.

At one point a character has the line: “Shouldn’t we be panicking right now?” and I wonder if that doesn’t apply to the film as a whole. Saulnier’s script is cunning and efficient in the way it ekes out a narrative from a bare minimum of locations – I’d say nearly half the film is located in the backstage dressing room of the title – but it could sure do with a burst of frantic energy.

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We observe tension and fear but, for me at least, it stays on the screen.

Rating: 2/5 stars

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