Hotel Artemis – Film Review by Frank L.
Director: Drew Pearce
Writer: Drew Pearce
Stars: Jodie Foster, Sofia Boutella, Dave Bautista
The time is 2028, the place is Los Angeles which is in the middle of an existential crisis caused by a criminal gang having cut off the water supply. Serious riots have engulfed the streets. Into this mix, “Nurse” (Jodie Foster) runs a secret hospital in a defunct hotel of splendid art deco shabby grandeur. Its patients are exclusively criminals.
The occupants are known by the name of the suite which they occupy. So you have Waikiki (Sterling K. Brown), Niagara (Jeff Goldblum), Honolulu (Brian Tyree Henry) and so on. Nurse’s assistant, appropriately called Everest, is played by Dave Bautista. Also splendid is the architecture of the Hotel Artemis and its interiors are one of the delights of the film. There are also the female roles of Nice (Sofia Boutella) and Morgan (Jenny Slate) but neither of them are patients in this unlikely hospital.
People come and go under the care of Nurse and there are, needless to say, various pieces of action-packed drama. In harmony with the zeitgeist of the pursuit of equality there is a brief fight scene in which Nice shows her prowess, thereby demonstrating that her name is a misnomer. Her style, physical dexterity and brains are far superior to the mere masculine brawn against which she is pitted. This is one of the highlights and indeed demonstrates that by 2028 the status quo in sexual relations will be different.
Drew Pearce is known as the writer of Iron Man 3 and Mission: Impossible – Rogue Nation. He has a track record as a writer but this is his directorial feature debut. However, there is something missing from the cocktail of criminals, physical injury, impressive architecture and fine acting which prevents Hotel Artemis from transporting the viewer into another world. The ingredients remain just that. They do not combine to create a sum greater than the parts. Undoubtedly, some of it is fun to watch but that is hardly enough.