The new thriller Green Room is playing in limited release in nine cities (it goes nationwide on Friday), but amid all the horror in the film involving Neo Nazis and savage attack dogs and box-cutters, audiences are cheering at one moment evoking the name of Prince.
The film begins with four members of a touring punk band named The Ain’t Rights being asked by a journalist to name their “desert island band.” The answers conform to the hipness of their reputation (Slayer, The Misfits), but then later, under more apocalyptic circumstances, the question is asked again. And with the specter of death lurking right behind a green room door, the answers include the names of artists like Simon and Garfunkel and, from the toughest member of the group (played by Joe Cole), the beloved “When Doves Cry” and “Kiss” singer, who died Thursday at age 57.
In a statement to EW, Green Room‘s director Jeremy Salunier said, “While I’m deeply saddened that the Prince reference in Green Room has now become a tribute, it warms my heart to know audiences are breaking out in applause when they hear it. The moment is about being true, about punk rock kids in a life or death situation admitting their real favorite bands. It was meant to be an unexpected choice, but now that we’re all reflecting on his life and his career, I really can’t think of an artist more punk rock than Prince.”
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Audience reaction to the moment has been rapturous, at least according to Twitter.