This website is dedicated to championing Pulp Cinema and Pulp Fiction writing, but there are also plenty of movies made today that need to be championed. Starting today there will be an ongoing article on this website about non-pulp related films that need some love. This article will be called For the Love of Film and will be written about once or twice a month in order to shine a light on films that I not only enjoy watching but hold close to my heart as well. The first film that will be featured is 2018’s Hotel Artemis. A film I believe to be misunderstood and am in hopes to gain a cult following at some point.
This film has an amazing ensemble cast that plays to everyone’s strengths. Sterling K Brown gets to be stoic and deliver speeches. Jodie Foster delivers a beautifully underrated performance that pulls at your heartstrings. Dave Bautista gets to be the character that makes you laugh the most but doesn’t intend to do so or realize that he is funny. Sofia Boutella gets to be a badass and Charlie Day gets to be a fast-talking asshole. With the exemption of two actors, everyone seems to be here for a reason. The only two I feel are miscast are Jenny Slate and Jeff Goldblum. Mostly because these two characters don’t get to do as much as I would like and not because they were bad. Jeff Goldblum gets to play his favorite character, Jeff Goldblum. Which isn’t a bad thing, he just doesn’t have a lot of time or leeway to do so. Jenny Slate turns in a fine performance, it just feels very random that she shows up and that she plays a cop in the movie. Overall the casting is a treat for any fan of film.
Drew Pearce truly understands the fundamentals of screenwriting. Everything that is brought up during the course of the film finds its way to being relevant in the third act. This is a film where no scenes are wasted and every conversation matters. Even if every item or piece of knowledge isn’t a revelation in the final act, it still leads the characters where they need to go, it still feels organic and never forced. There are several different storylines that run throughout the film and they all come together seamlessly by the end of it. I wish more movies nowadays would tie things up as well as Drew Pearce does in this film. More times than not I leave a film feeling like they could’ve trimmed the fat or I feel like certain aspects were unresolved.
A Love Letter to Film
For the most part, Hotel Artemis is a very original movie, yet when I was in the theater on opening day I had a feeling I was watching something from another decade. During my first viewing, I could clearly tell that this was an homage to low budget sci-fi films on the 1980s. As you’re watching the story unfold you can tell this is a very well crafted love letter to the works of filmmakers such as Charles Band and John Carpenter. I couldn’t stop thinking of Trancers while I watched Hotel Artemis for the first time. There is a futuristic sci-fi genre picture in the foreground, while there is a larger world with commentary about the contemporary world in the background. Only to be hinted at while the characters interact in a more enclosed space due to budget constraints. This truly does have the trappings of one of these 80s movies and I hope it can become a cult classic such as Escape from Newyork has over the years.
I can’t recommend this movie more. If you love genre pictures or sci-fi films with an edge, then you should check this out. I hope this article peaked your interest.