Directed by:
Written by:
Starring: , , , ,


Certificate: 18

Running Time: 94 mins
Reviewer: David Gillespie – HCF Official Artist and Reviewer
Original Theatrical Review
Now available on Limited Edition & Standard Edition 4K UHD and Blu-Ray from Second Sight Films

Some horror movies have a certain energy and glint in their eye that has them catapult themselves above much of the mediocre offerings that latch onto whatever idea is fashionable or likely to attract the attention of the popcorn-chomping teenage market. Green Room has director Jeremy Saulnier deliver something far more interesting. We get a fast moving, brutal, viciously funny and highly original survival horror set in a manky, isolated nightclub with a hardcore punk soundtrack thrown into the mix. More importantly, we get Patrick Stewart as the blood thirsty, bad-ass boss.

A struggling, young punk band called The Ain’t Rights are coming to the end of a long and disappointing tour when they receive a chance booking at a rough but busy club deep in the backwoods of Oregon. Having performed an ear-shredding set to an unforgiving and rowdy group of skinheads and rednecks, they stomp offstage and accidentally walk in on an execution of a young woman by one of the club’s members. The manager is called to the scene and locks the startled band members in the room with the body, her killer, a bouncer and a stoned crowd member called Amber (Imogen Poots). Things turn from bad to worse for the band when the shady owner, Darcy Banker (Patrick Stewart) arrives to slaughter the witnesses and protect his criminal operation. He has backup, weapons and a pack of blood thirsty dogs while the The Ain’t Rights only have a gun, a hostage and a lock separating them from certain death. With no one coming to rescue them in any hurry, is it going to be the band’s final encore?


Green Room is a breath of fresh air for the horror market. It is lean, violent, stylish and fantastic fun. It has a host of young talent, including the late Anton Yelchin (Chekov from Star Trek) and Alia Shawkat (Arrested Development), whose characters you are routing for and hoping will make it through to the bitter end. Yet it becomes apparent very few or none will make it due to the incredible odds they are up against. We have an assortment of obnoxious villains that change sides and have ulterior motives as to why they should harm or possibly help the terrified youths. However, it is Stewart that elevates proceedings to the next level. He drips menace without ever having to overact or lose control. The old pro is simply the epitome of evil. Watching him calmly convince the youngsters to unlock the door and let him unleash the inevitable on them is as compelling as it is terrifying.

The story is full of false hopes, twists and one of the most incredible head shot wounds you’ll likely ever see in a film. One arm breaking sequence had the audience yell in disbelief and repulsion. The makeup and sound effects for the duration are really quite incredible.  There are wonderfully subtle moments too including a dog rushing to mourn the death of its slaughtered master rather than attack the person who killed him. I also loved the idea of using the feedback of amps as a weapon to repel the dog attacks.

Writer/director Jeremy Saulnier seems to be an old head on young shoulders. This is the work of an experienced and highly talented film-maker that knows how to press all the right buttons to get the audience eating out of his hands. I didn’t want it to end; it has an urgency to deliver and make its mark. The director has created a film that keeps on giving by exciting, shocking, amusing and horrifying its audience. You’ll likely not have more fun watching a film in 2016.

Rating: ★★★★★★★★☆☆

Green Room Limited Edition Second Sight

Second Sight Films Release of Green Room

Reviewed by Bat

Genre label Second Sight Films have given Jeremy Saulnier’s punk band survival thriller GREEN ROOM a Limited Edition dual format release that includes the UHD (presented in Dolby Vision HDR) and Blu-ray with the main feature and bonus features on both discs. The film and its special features are also be available on standard edition 4K UHD and Blu-Ray.

If you manage to get your hands on the Limited Edition release, you’ll be treated to a rigid slipcase with new artwork by Adam Stothard, a 120-page book with new essays by Eugenio Ercolani and Gian Giacomo Petrone, Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, Josh Hurtado, Jolene Richardson, Shelagh Rowan-Legg and Thomas Watson, and six collectors’ art cards. Whichever release you’ll buy though, you’ll be treated to a selection of special features on the disc that’ll please any fan of the movie.

Special Features

Audio Commentary by Reyna Cervantes and Prince Jackson

Prince Jackson, host of Knight Light horror movie podcast for Bloody Disgusting, and Reyna Cervantes, writer for Bloody Disgusting, Fanogira and IGN, and host of Carnal Extremities podcast, join forces for this audio commentary on Green Room. It’s clear these two love their movies and they share an adoration for Green Room as they explain their fascination with it. The fact Cervantes was in a punk band and lived in the Pacific North West meant the film was very familiar territory with the experience of The Ain’t Rights (prior to the murder). They talk about the cast, the reaction and feel of the scenes from the movie whilst also giving their input into how real the scenario is for touring musicians, and how this would be the worst case scenario ending up at a bar you don’t know with a hostile crowd.  You can tell they both really enjoy this movie, and their fun, relaxed, casual chat is like sitting in on a discussion with two friends. A nice blend of film insight and chat.

Audio Commentary with writer and director, Jeremy Saulnier

We get treated to some proper juicy behind-the-scenes details as writer and director Jeremy Saulnier provides an audio commentary track. He talks about how he stuck to the script and didn’t compromise his vision to achieve the film he wanted to make, the story of which he drew from personal experience and that of his friends, having grown up in and around bands. Though he says he feels unprepared dong the commentary,  he provides incredible detail on the making of the film, which fans of Green Room and filmmakers will surely enjoy.

Going Hardcore: An Interview with writer and director, Jeremy Saulnier (32 mins 8 secs)

In this interview, Jeremy Saulnier starts at the beginning and goes into detail about his first feature film, Murder Party, and how it took him six years to recover financially as it was all self-funded. After subsequently working in advertising and corporate video, he explains how he wanted to get back into the indie filmmaking scene which ultimately led to Blue Ruin. Off the back of the success of Blue Ruin, he was offered a lot of great scripts but none were quite for him and many were tied up or in control with other companies. He knew he had to write something himself from his own history and experiences, and thus we have Green Room. A fascinating insight into the writing, directing and his approach to the movie.

Punk Rock: An Interview with actor Callum Turner (15 mins 45 secs)

British actor Callum Turner, who stars as lead singer Tiger, talks about creating an audition tape and getting to work with Saulnier and the rest of the ‘band’ on Green Room, his first Anerican film. He shares his experiences working with the rest of the cast, in particular the late Anton Yelchin who he said was incredibly generous and welcoming to know and work with. He also gives insight into the chemistry and dynamics of the band, and how he listened to and watched videos of punk bands to get into the role of Tiger. The four of them also ended up rehearsing and recording together for the film, with Shawkat and Yelchin already musicians, with Joe Cole required to learn drums and Callum himself required to sing (or shout!) and portray that punk frontman energy. He talks about how having to learn a bunch of songs and play them as a band brought them closer together and made their performance as The Ain’t Rights that much better.

Rocking Out: An Interview with composers Brooke and Will Blair (15 mins 26 secs)

Brothers Brooke and Will Blair talk about how they grew up with Jeremy Saulnier, who was friends with their older brother Macon (who also stars in the film). Despite taking a different path and going into music, they stayed in touch and worked on Saulnier’s first feature, Murder Party, where they learned how to score a movie. The duo talk about working with Pro Tools Lite, their first recording software, and how they got invited to do the score for Blue Ruin, which they completed in a week due to the film’s necessity for a quick turnaround. They were keen to work again with Saulnier and submitted two hours worth of demos to showcase their ideas. The brothers then talk about the music ideas for Green Room, such as how they experimented with different feedback sounds.

Going Green: An interview with production designer Ryan Warren Smith (15 mins 5 secs)

Ryan Warren Smith talks about working with Green Room‘s producers before and how he knew what kind of film to expect from Jeremy Saulnier thanks to his previous effort, Blue Ruin. Despite not knowing Saulnier, after a phone call, he realised they were both on the same page with the look and feel of Green Room, which made their working relationship so much easier. Smith talks about how he loved how the film felt real, and drew inspiration from punk clubs in Portland from the past for the decor and feel. With Saulnier’s very specific writing and blocking of scenes, they couldn’t find an existing club that fit, so they built the interior of the skinhead bar on a stage in a warehouse whilst the exteriors were shot at Mount Hood in Oregon. Smith goes into plenty of detail about how they approach the rest of the set and is a great insight into how this film came to life.

Nazi Punks Fuck Off: Thomas Caldwell on Green Room (14 mins 40 secs)

In this video essay, Thomas Caldwell talks about white supremacists as the villains in the movies, and how they turned from a joke of an antagonist to a credible threat.

Archive Featurette: Into The Pit – Making of Green Room (9 mins 57 secs)

In this featurette, we’re treated to behind-the-scenes footage of the shoot and interviews with Jeremy Saulnier, actors Macon Blair, Patrick Stewart, Imogen Poots, Mark Webber, Eric Edelstein, Anton Yelchin, Joe Cole and Alia Shawkat, and cinematographer Sean Porter.


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About DAVID GILLESPIE 169 Articles
Fighting for clean bathrooms and restrooms since 1974.

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