Flash Movie Review: The Neon Demon

For something so subjective it amazes me how much influence beauty has over many of us. I saw at an early age how people paid more attention to individuals who were considered beautiful—at least on the outside. If you put 2 people together, one thought of as attractive and the other not as pretty, a majority of the general public would believe the attractive one more no matter what they claimed. Look at the fashion industry; can someone tell me why a person is considered less presentable if they are not dressed in something that is currently fashionable? Many years ago the fashion industry came out with bell bottomed pants; maybe some of you remember them. Those in school who did not own a pair of these pants may not have necessary been considered less of a student, but it would not be a surprise if they were looked at as being poor or less intelligent. When I see some of the celebrities that are idolized these days, I am dumbfounded; what in the world is the attraction to these people? Especially those from reality shows that do not focus on talent, strength or creative arts; why do people trust the things these types of celebrities come out with in statements or texts? I find the whole idea of one’s looks such an odd concept. For example when someone wants to fix me up with one of their friends and they say the person is pretty or good looking; that aspect of a person is not important to me like kindness or empathy. So this is why I feel beauty yields an undue amount of power in our world. What I did not know is how dangerous it can be based on the things I saw in this dramatic horror thriller.   JESSE, played by Elle Fanning (Super 8, Maleficent), was just starting out in the modeling world but she already had something wanted by other models. Directed and written by Nicolas Winding Refn (Drive, Only God Knows), this movie went for what I call an “artsy” look. With stark vivid images held in extra long camera shots, I could understand the use of them considering the story line. With Christina Hendricks (Mad Men-TV, Life as We Know it) as Roberta Hoffmann, Keanu Reeves (John Wick, The Matrix franchise) as Hank and Jena Malone (Contact, Sucker Punch) as Ruby; the acting was okay but nothing that really stood out for me. Elle who I have been impressed with in the past still has a certain screen presence but I do not think the script helped her in this film. I believe I understand the message the writers wanted to convey but I did not enjoy the way it was presented to me. There were many scenes where I sat and wished the picture would have ended; I was bored and found the “artsy” scenes a distraction. Maybe the creative team was going for shock value with some of the scenes but a few of them grossed me out. So be it if I am not considered hip, fashionable or with it because I did not find the beauty in this film. There were a couple of scenes with blood.


1 ¾ stars  



About moviejoltz

From a long line of movie afficionados, one brother was the #1 renter of movies in the country with Blockbuster, I am following in the same traditions that came before me. To balance out the long hours seated in dark movie theaters, I also teach yoga and cycling. For the past 3 years, I have correctly picked the major Oscar winners... so join me as we explore the wonder of movies and search for that perfect 4 star movie.

Posted on June 29, 2016, in Drama and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 10 Comments.

  1. Oh shoot, I like Keanu Reeves but this sounds like a bomb.

  2. I like the title, and the trailer is intriguing. Sometimes a film can stand on its visuals (“Suspiria” might be an example). I may check it out someday. Maybe it’s one of those films that could qualify as a guilty pleasure?

    • I do not know if I would say guilty pleasure or punishment, lol But then again I understood what they were trying to do with the story and Elle was good. If you do see this at some point I would enjoy hearing your take on it. Thank you for the comments.

  3. Looks are deceiving and titles are elusive. Art is in the eye in the of the beholder, sure, not arguing that point. Life imitates art therefore art is a reflection of life. I’ve seen some pretty disturbing art but this film just by the trailer doesn’t look artsy or quasi lesbian dark in the realm of modelling and fashion. It looks like someone brought a Jackson Pollock painting to life then puked on it. Perhaps the director’s cynicism has come to fruition through this film and now wants to share this with everyone they don’t know hoping that we will bathe them in accolades. I don’t know. And if that bald guy was Keanu Reeves…. WOW time has not been good to him. Sure people age but c’mon now…. AND why does he always do the “weird” films? Must be a fetish or something. I’ll pass on this one,

  4. I liked your review, but the movie trailer alone made me want to run the other way. I’ve been in theaters showing movies like this and wonder if “artsy” is a pet-rock word for “boring.” 🙂

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