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Bad Times at the El Royale

ALL ROADS LEAD HERE.

Circa 1968, several strangers, most with a secret to bury, meet by chance at Lake Tahoe's El Royale, a rundown hotel with a dark past. Over the course of one night, everyone will show their true colors - before everything goes to hell.

"With the surprisingly inviting neo-noir 'Bad Times at the El Royale', writer/director Drew Goddard panders to jaded moviegoers' secular disillusionment for the sake of making a larger (though ultimately vague and tidy) point about Americans' struggle for meaning in a post-'60s world. And it always is a struggle: 'Bad Times at the El Royale' follows several strangers as they, in a sequence of Pulp Fiction-y vignettes and flashbacks, recall how and why they've fled to the El Royale, a posh but now-abandoned casino-cum-motel that straddles the Nevada/California border.

In this way, Goddard (the co-writer and director of 2012's 'Cabin in the Woods') uses melodramatic plot twists and grisly violence precisely, to make a broad point about the struggle between square-jawed (but sympathetic) optimism and cynical (but relatable) pessimism. His interest in Americans' struggle to find faith during dark times (the film takes place some time in the late '60s) makes Bad Times at the El Royale seem downright quaint, but this Irwin-Allen-sized B-movie mostly works thanks to Goddard's knack for nesting-doll-style narrative compartmentalization and his talent for bringing out the best in his uniformly strong ensemble cast, which includes Jeff Bridges, Chris Hemsworth, and breakout star Cynthia Erivo."

Courtey - Simon Abrams, NPR

Showtimes: 

No screenings currently scheduled.

Directed by: 
Drew Goddard
Running Time: 
141m
Country(ies): 
U.S.A.
Year: 
2018
Language: 
English
Starring: 
Jeff Bridges, Chris Hemsworth, Dakota Johnson, Jon Hamm
Screenplay by: 
Drew Goddard
Rated: 
14A

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