ARROW IN THE HEAD REVIEWS

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Green Room (2016)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Jeremy Saulnier

Starring:
Anton Yelchin/Pat
Imogen Poots/Amber
Patrick Stewart/Darcy
Mark Webber/Daniel
7 10
PLOT-CRUNCH
A punk band doing a gig at a Skinhead bar, lock themselves up in the green room of the place after witnessing a murder. Skinheads want in to whack them; they have to fight their way out!
THE LOWDOWN

After BLUE RUIN, Jeremy Saulnier’s third feature GREEN ROOM (WATCH IT HERE) has been on my hit “must see list” for a bit now. It took the time it took for me to pin it to the ground, such is life. The good news is, for this a-hole that is, it was worth the wait, as for the most part, the flick lived up to my modest expectations. Before I go on, I will admit that it was odd seeing Anton Yelchin in the lead here, in the sense that it reminded me that he had passed on (in that freak accident, F.U. Chrysler, I am happy his family is suing your ass - irresponsible) and for some reason, I still didn’t buy it. I can’t believe that dude is gone! Such a solid actor and from what I heard of folks that knew him, a stand up dude as well. What a f*cking bummer. RIP Anton. All right am done, back to the film.

Although we’ve seen the “heroes trapped in claustrophobic setting with evil on the outside trying to get at them” formula before; having the protagonists be a band and the baddies a horde of Skinheads definitely tagged a pinch of uniqueness to the picture. Moreover Saulnier’s grounded and earnest approach to his characters, the dire circumstance and the bulk of the plot turns, lent an air of authenticity to the proceedings, one that I found mucho engaging and impactful. Obviously being that I cared, believed in the people and the happenings at play, the stakes were upped when it came to the suspense factor. I wasn’t tearing out what’s left of my hair out of my head or anything but I did catch myself sitting up in anxiety a couple of times as to what was gonna go down next. Always a good sign!

The top notch cast was also a big plus! Patrick Stewart (being a charming mofo even when playing a villain), Anton Yelchin at his most vulnerable/affable, and the lovely Imogen Poots (bringing in the badass – loved that “Chelsea” wig she had on) all sold their roles and so did the lesser-known actors who came off as genuine. A note on the portrayal of the Skinheads if I may; good on the film for not showcasing them as over the top caricatures; they felt authentic, bad men with razor short hair cuts, which once again was an asset to the movie. Add to all that an easy pace, a handful of cringe inducing gore bits, organic bleak humor that came out of the going ons, economic/credible dialogue, Saulnier’s intoxicating visual style which went from gritty to artsy (some of the storytelling decisions he took were fairly novel) and you get a taunt, bleak and enjoyable slice of Indie horror cum thriller.

On the flip side, not sure if it was due to A- The movie being a tad too vague for its own good or B- The fact that I’m a moron. But some of the subplots found here (like that wrapped baseball bat in the trunk) left me scratching my head as to how they related to the main storyline hence as the end credits rolled, I didn’t feel like I had grasped the full picture. Finally, some things would happen too quickly, with the film not capitalizing on the momentum that it had built up and rushing through its brutal punch lines. It got so bad that I had to rewind now and again cause I blinked and missed some of the action. The fact that lots of the get-downs were set in overtly dark or greenly lit settings (I know it’s called Green Room but not everything has to look like Godzilla’s ass) didn’t help matters either. It had to be spat.

On the whole though; GREEN ROOM wound up being a groovy sit down and if you haven’t seen it yet, I do recommend you check it out. It is worth at least one spin of the wheel!

GORE
A knife in the head, a ripped wrist (nasty), stabbings, a sliced stomach, bullet hits (loved that one in the face), a slit throat and more! Grounded and harsh.
T & A
Imogen Poots kept her "poots" in house. Nough said!
BOTTOM LINE
GREEN ROOM was a tight, well acted/written, confidently directed, tension charged and at times brutal as f*ck thriller! It took a formula that we've seen before and added enough spices and Ketchup to it to make it all come off as fresh! Yeah some of the subplots went over my head and some of the action was hard to decipher either cause it was too dark (or green) or cause they elbow dropped too swiftly for my slow solo brain cell, but no matter. I watched, I was entertained, it ended. It also acted as potent reminder of the mammoth talent we lost in Anton Yelchin, really a shame. He was way too young to check out like that. Relish every day people! You never know which one will be your last...
BULL'S EYE
Anton Yelchin and Imogen Poots also acted together in the Fright Night remake.

Patrick Stewart was so creeped out after reading the script that he locked his doors, turned on his alarm system and poured himself a Scotch. He wanted to play the role after that.

The paintball story Anton Yelchin's character shares is based on a real tale that director Jeremy Saulnier went through.
Strikeback
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4:08PM on 09/21/2016

Saw it the day Anton died... That was a bummer

Yeah, so imagine my surprise when I am watching this with my wife and I check my news feed and its all about his untimely death...
Yeah, so imagine my surprise when I am watching this with my wife and I check my news feed and its all about his untimely death...
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