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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  



Flash Movie Review: Sucker Punch

Everyone, please step aside and let this generation’s new Spice Girls take center stage. These young women, though dressed seductively, were all about the “girl power.” The only difference, or you may think there is no difference, was they could not sing or act. What a poor excuse for a movie; I felt I was watching a video game. The story, if you wish to call it that, was about an abusive step father who hauled off his step daughter to a mental institution, after her mother had died. To prevent her from telling authorities about what he had done to her and her sister, he paid off the warden or top administrator to have her lobotomized. Doesn’t this sound like a fun story?  My favorite part of the story had to do with this unfortunate girl being dubbed Babydoll, played by Emily Browning (Sleeping Beauty, The Uninvited), who has a speical gift–when she dances, she can put people into a trance. While she dances her mind enters an unconscious, alternative world where she learns how to plot her escape. I do not believe you need any more information about the story; you get the idea I am sure. Among those joining her in this plan were Vanessa Hudgens (High School franchise, Journey 2: The Mysterious Island) as Blondie and Jena Malone (Into the Wild, Pride & Prejudice) as Rocket. Except for the art direction, this movie was simply wrong on so many levels. The CGI effects were not enough to keep me from being bored by the story. I believe this movie will interest a small range of people: young males.


1 1/2 stars — DVD


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