This horror/thriller film is about a punk-rock band going to perform in front of a Neo-Nazi audience. Things get out of hand when the band witnesses a murder. Thus chaos ensues as they are all trapped and must fight their way out.
A movie that I noticed a while back and read all such glowing reviews. My curiosity struck me and I had to watch it, to see what the buzz was about. Honestly, the way I saw it, I thought it was ok.
What the film did pretty good were the suspense and thrills. The first half of the movie was slow, dull, and kinda boring. But when Anton Yelchin’s character got attacked, that was when the movie redeemed itself a bit. As I was watching, I was creeped out and a little on edge. Seeing the band members trying to stay alive did warrant some entertainment.
Especially when one witnessed how grizzly and brutal the attacks on the band were. Anton Yelchin’s horrific injury in this movie really set the mood on the type of danger everyone was in. This tied into another good thing about the movie, the gore effects I believed were really good. One saw people getting mauled by vicious dogs, shotgun blasts to the face, stabbings, and other gruesome attacks. At times though it can be too gory and I feel like the filmmakers were trying to amp up the entertainment that was lacking heavily in the first half.
Acting in the movie was fine throughout. The best actor in the movie was Patrick Stewart, but it was a shame that he didn’t have a noteworthy or memorable scene in this. Which leads into the negatives I have with the movie.
The first big negative was that there wasn’t any development with any of the characters. One won’t remember their names once it all ends. They are all just not interesting people. The choices they make are not consistent. At first, the band does a couple smart decisions while trapped in the green room, which was surprising. But as the movie kept going, it got dumber and dumber. That goes hand in hand with the bad guys too. Stewart’s right-hand man all of a sudden believed what he and his crew were doing were wrong.
Pacing at times can be pretty fast and slow. The movie doesn’t allow the action to take a breath or build enough suspense a whole lot. Two of the band members get axed relatively quickly on the first escape run. One of the Neo-Nazi members that wanted to help got killed really fast.
Let me talk about the bad guys themselves for a moment. I feel like the movie didn’t utilize them to their full capacity in the slightest. If one were to replace the Neo-Nazis with ordinary crazy people holding the band against their will, it wouldn’t have changed the story or plot in any form. At one point it was revealed that Yelchin’s character was Jewish, but that doesn’t come back in any way. I thought the plot of the movie could have upped its game more and brought more excitement to the table. I wish the movie would have utilized the “fire hazard” object that Stewart not-so-subtly pointed out in the first half. Granted it would have made the movie more predictable if the object was brought up again toward the end. But at the same time, it would have made the climax better.
Now I do say the second half is better than the first, but even then, it got back to slow format when it reached the climax. The climax was pretty underrated and nothing special. Outside of the weird scene where the movie believed it was a good idea to follow one of the vicious dogs on a lonely road. Until he came back to the hide-off to rest next to his dead master. I don’t know.
One unintentional funny part toward the beginning was when the band was performing in a Hispanic restaurant. I do believe that was the most “perfect” spot to do hard rock, grunge, and punk-style music. The band needed to get a better promoter. Though maybe not because they sounded terrible regardless.
The movie had gory practical effects, had some suspense/creepy value, and the acting was fine throughout. But the lack of character development and underwhelming execution of the plot drag it all down. This was a movie that just didn’t click with me, but it sure does click with a vast majority it seemed like.