Quick story. At my day job, my co-worker is nineteen years old, I told her about this movie and expressed how much I love Jodie Foster… she didn’t know who Jodie Foster was… I can’t with this generation, man. I just can’t. I needed to call my friend and have him give me a verbal hug. I really needed it. See, this is what happens when you go into directing: generations don’t get exposed to you.
Anyway, the story looks like it’s sci-fi about a hotel that’s secretly a hospital for criminals and they’re all getting together for an all-out bloodbath.
Here’s the star-studded cast. Starring, we have the impossible awesome Jodie Foster (ELYSIUM , THE BRAVE ONE , and SILENCE OF THE LAMBS ), the up and coming awesome Sterling K. Brown (BLACK PANTHER , MARSHALL , WHISKEY TANGO FOXTROT , and upcoming films THE PREDATOR  and THE RHYTHM SECTION ), the equally impossibly awesome Sofia Boutella (THE MUMMY , ATOMIC BLONDE , and STAR TREK BEYOND ), national treasure Jeff Goldblum (ISLE OF DOGS , THOR: RAGNAROK , INDEPENDENCE DAY 2 , and upcoming films JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOM  and THE MOUNTAIN ), and Charlie Day (PACIFIC RIM: UPRISING , FIST FIGHT , THE HOLLARS , VACATION , and the upcoming THE LEGO MOVIE TWO: THE SECOND PART ). In support, we have Dave Bautista (AVENGERS: INFINITY WAR , BLADE RUNNER 2049 , SPECTRE , and upcoming films ESCAPE PLAN 2: HADES  and MASTER Z: IP MAN LEGACY ), Zachary Quinto (SNOWDEN , and HITMAN: AGENT 47 ), Jenny Slate (DESPICABLE ME 3 , SECRET LIFE OF PETS , and upcoming films VENOM  and THE ARK AND THE AARDVARK ), Kenneth Choi (GRINGO , SPIDER-MAN: HOMECOMING , SUICIDE SQUAD , and upcoming films OFFICE UPRISING  and BUMBLEBEE ), and Brian Tyree Henry (CROWN HEIGHTS , and upcoming films WHITE BOY RICK  and WIDOWS ).
Now for the crew. Writing and directing, we have Drew Pearce, making his feature film debut, but has written MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE – ROGUE NATION (2015), and is slated for the upcoming SHERLOCK HOLMES 3 (2020). Composing the score is Cliff Martinez, known for GAME NIGHT (2018), THE FOREIGNER (2017), and THE NEON DEMON (2016). The cinematographer is Chung-hoon Chung, known for IT (2017), THE HANDMAIDEN (2016), ME AND EARL AND THE DYING GIRL (2015), and the upcoming EARTHQUAKE BIRD (2019). Finally, the co-editors are Gardner Gould (DON’T BREATHE , and the upcoming THE GRUDGE ) and Paul Zucker (WILSON  and TRAINWRECK ).
Overall, I think this is going to be a fuck-ton of fun. I’m hoping to see some juicy violence, some bad-ass acting from Foster, Boutella, and pretty much everyone else. My expectations are through the roof, y’all.
This is my honest opinion of: HOTEL ARTEMIS
Set on a Wednesday in Los Angeles, circa the near future of 2028. Los Angeles is plagued by a city-wide series of riots involving the police and faceless civilians. The Hotel Artemis is a secret place where criminals go to get patched by the Nurse (Jodie Foster), a seasoned health practitioner aided by her burly, yet kind-natured and loyal assistant Everest (Dave Bautista). While out on a bank heist, Waikiki (Sterling K. Brown) and his younger brother Honolulu (Brian Tyree Henry) get shot at by cops. Though Waikiki manages to remain intact, Honolulu gets shot and is taken to the Artemis where Honolulu is treated for his injuries. While treatment goes well, the riots end bringing more people to the Artemis, including L.A’s ruler, the Wolf King (Jeff Goldblum), an injured young police officer named Morgan (Jenny Slate) that Nurse knew years ago, French assassin Nice (Sofia Boutella), and gun dealer Acapulco (Charlie Day), and tension rising between all of them.
Mmph… damn it, I’m disappointed in this movie.
I was expecting some fast-paced, mindless action, but I ended up getting a borderline drama where the action doesn’t happen until the final twenty minutes or so. If that. No joke, this movie shouldn’t be toting itself around like it’s an action movie because that’s a bold faced lie. Most of it is literally just the characters interacting with each other going nowhere for the most part. This wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing if the characters were any interesting, and outside of Nurse and Everest, that’s not exactly the case. Hell, the only thing that stopped me from being unbearably bored with the movie is just how charismatic the cast is. Brown, Boutella, Day, Goldblum, Slate, they’re all really good actors and I like seeing them bounce off of each other, so there’s no shortage of good chemistry, but a lot of good that does if their respective characters aren’t copy-and-pasted from equally uninteresting films. You’ve got the criminal who wants out of his life but can’t seem to, the sexy and deadly assassin, the loud-mouthed entitled dick-cheese with a superiority complex, it’s just not as exciting as it should be. Both Quinto and Goldblum are barely in the movie, wasting both of their talents big time, Slate’s literally in this movie to provide lazy exposition about Nurse’s backstory over the course of a couple scenes, and we still don’t really learn their relationship to each other.
So what’s good about the movie? Well, I mentioned that the acting and chemistry between actors isn’t bad. And when the action kicks off… at the end… it’s not awful. Boutella is still the bad-ass that I’m kinda sorta in love with, there’s a death-by-3D-printer, which I’ve never seen before and would lie if I said I didn’t enjoy. And there’s some fun dialog now and then. Waikiki’s got a fun bit during the bank heist where he says to the hostages, “Stand if your boss is a millionaire. Stay standing if your boss is an asshole,” and then one dude sits down, and then he says, “Good for you.” I laughed at that. Nurse has a great line saying, “No water in LA, but it’s raining asshole in here.” So give this movie some credit, the humor comes through pretty well.
Overall, this movie isn’t very good, nor is it all that much fun. Not enough action to justify the marketing and poorly defined characters make for a near-boring experience. The only thing that saves it is how much the cast pushes through the limitations of the script and the climax does get fun, but it’s almost a chore to get to that point. It’s such a shame that this movie falls so short because I really wanted to like it, even love it. But… I don’t. I like a few things sprinkled around, but it’s a dull package when all is said and done. Honestly, I’m not even opposed to the idea of a sequel, as the movie does imply that there are other hotels similar to the Artemis, and I’d be interested in seeing if this universe could be expanded and be more of what was advertised here, but I don’t think this movie will do very well at the box office, so my guess is a sequel won’t be in the cards. No shocker there, if you ask me. As a recommendation, save it for a rental at best. No point in wasting your money if you end up not liking it. If this is just another Wednesday at the Artemis, than I’ll check in another time.
My honest rating for HOTEL ARTEMIS: a weak 3/5
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