Swanner: Hotel Artemis is a secret membership only hospital for bad guys. On June 21, 2028, Los Angeles is being tore apart as water has become a luxury and the city of millions riot in protest, but a different battle is happening at the “hotel”. As The Nurse (Jodie Foster) juggles criminals, her beds fill with patients, but one of those patients is a hired assassin there to carry out a job that will close the Hotel forever.
Judd: Hotel Artemis was written and directed by Drew Pearce, who’s biggest credit to date is writing Iron Man 3. In addition to Foster, the movie stars Sterling K Brown, Sofia Boutella, Jenny Slate, Zachary Quinto, Dave Bautista, Charlie Day, and Jeff Goldblum. It’s an impressive cast for a movie that ends up being a fun, but ultimately disposable, summer action flick.
Swanner: The film looked like it would have been something Tarantino would have created with it odd characters and gloomy yet beautiful production design. I was wondering why the film takes place on the first day of summer in 2028? Was it to emphasize the need for water or was it placed there because of the Los Angeles Olympics would be just a month away? Maybe I’ve over analyzed this too much?
Judd: There may have been reason for some of the things that happened in the movie, but with a huge cast and a 97 minute runtime, there wasn’t much time to build the characters, which is why the movie feels so thin. I would have loved to know more about The Nurse, Everest, The Wolf King, Morgan, Waikiki, but there wasn’t enough time to give to each character. And that’s really a shame because Foster’s The Nurse could have been a fascinating character had she had more time to flesh her out.
Swanner: Funny hearing you ask for a film to be longer, but I agree it would have been very interesting learning more about these strangers that just happen upon the Hotel Artemis, this first day of summer. I think it’s supposed to be in chaos, much like Reservoir Dogs, where there is barely time to breath. It’s a nice distraction to have a summer film that has me thinking for a change. The film is different with a great cast, and I appreciate that. I bet it’s even more fun to watch stoned.
Judd: I know how much you like to fill in the story with your own narrative when the script doesn’t provide it. In some cases that can be a good thing, but I don’t agree that is the case here. While I enjoyed it, and I would recommend it – as a rental – I can’t let what could have been something much more interesting off that easy.
Swanner: 3 Stars
Judd: 2 stars