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Film Review: “Hotel Artemis” (2018) ★★★


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It was not long ago when Jodie Foster promised to retire from acting. But whatever reason lead her to change her mind, I can only applaud that. As a matter of fact, her name appearing in any film is almost attracting viewers the same way bees are attracted to honey. People rush to the closest theater to watch anything she has to offer from bad to awful movies and from good to excellent, as long as Mrs. Foster graces them.

“Hotel Artemis” written and directed by Drew Pearce and set in Los Angeles in 2028 is torn into pieces by a riot that quickly escalates. It takes us to the highly secured but private emergency clinic known as Hotel Artemis that serves only exceptionally dangerous criminals who can get there only by having a membership. The rules of that place are very simple and the Nurse and her loyal assistant Everest have no intentions of compromising them – no guns, no disrespect, no killing of any kind.

If the rules are not followed, no one will ever be allowed to enter the facility… But the rules are the rules and can be broken any time… And when it will, the chaos in the street will be nothing in comparison to what will happen inside if anyone violates the rules of the house… And it all starts with Waikiki (Sterling K. Brown) whose brother got severely injured during bank robbery. As the only way to escape police or even the riot, the man calls The Nurse (Jodie Foster), an old lady who gladly accepts three more people, as she has two rooms available.

As one of them was not allowed to enter the hotel for medical treatment due to the lack of membership, Everest (Dave Bautista) gladly executes his boss’ order and throws the man out of the building, while Waikiki and his brother was allowed in. However, there is a surprise guest named Nice (Sofia Boutella), who’s not nice at all if somebody chooses to mess with her. And one guest, rather patient with name Acapulco, will soon wish to be anywhere but with her in the same room.

As the story unfolds, we learn a bit more about The Nurse and how she ended up having an extraordinary facility built for criminals only. And that her direct boss is Niagara (Jeff Goldblum) who has a son named Crosby (Zachary Quinto) that will require extra attention from viewers to realize how uncontrollable and emotionally insecure the man is. But it is the past of the Nurse that fascinates us most, and slowly turns into an emotional revelation that will make the viewer to fall for this old woman even more.

It’s Jodie Foster’s physical transformation that helps the Nurse to become who she is – the person with dignity and set of rules that only she can break, and she will, make no mistake about that. With the help of Jodie Foster’s touch, the viewer is able to see or observe the Nurse from different angles, allowing her personality to shine throughout the film. Her connection with Everest, or rather him being so close to her is truly admirable, as his willingness to sacrifice his own life for her or participate in a very dangerous fight that can cost his life is something that can be done by someone who deeply cares about that particular person.

Overall, “Hotel Artemis” is an exquisite piece of art, very unique and highly entertaining. On top of that, it has that little charm that every movie can win from, and Pearce’s film is just that. Through Pearce’s direction, the film adopts an interesting style that makes “Hotel Artemis” even more engaging and interesting to watch. Performance delivered by Jodie Foster is always undeniably beautiful and worthwhile seeing. Sterling K. Brown and Sofia Boutella are simply fine in their parts which have never been any worse than Foster herself. In fact, the entire cast of “Hotel Artemis” tried hard to deliver as much fun as they could, not forgetting drama and action, so that every viewer who watches it can have a little bit of everything, which “Hotel Artemis” truly succeeds at.

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