HOME |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
 
Newest Reviews
Raya and the Last Dragon
Letter from Paris
Behind the Mask
Lucky
Matrix, The
Undergods
Betrayed
Fried Barry
Once Upon a River
Cowboys
Atlantis
We Still Say Grace
Enfant Terrible
Nomadland
Playboy of the Western World, The
Bike Thief, The
Threshold
Virtuoso, The
Here are the Young Men
Beast Beast
Labyrinth of Cinema
Justice Society: World War II
Artist's Wife, The
Truman & Tennessee: An Intimate Conversation
Pusher III
Palm Springs
Devil Commands, The
Oak Room, The
Pusher II
Forget Everything and Run
Secrets & Lies
Red Moon Tide
Man with Nine Lives, The
Pusher
Pot Carriers, The
Black Bear
Don't Cry, Pretty Girls!
Portal
Me You Madness
Reckoning, The
   
 
Newest Articles
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Maroc 7 and Invasion
Network Double Bills: The Best of Benny Hill and The Likely Lads
Network Double Bills: Some Girls Do and Deadlier Than the Male
Absolutely Bananas: Link on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Hawk the Slayer and The Medusa Touch
The Price of Plague: The Masque of the Red Death on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Seance on a Wet Afternoon and Ring of Spies
Chaney Chillers: Inner Sanctum Mysteries - The Complete Film Series on Blu-ray
   
 
  Vox Lux Get Yourself Seen
Year: 2018
Director: Brady Corbet
Stars: Natalie Portman, Jude Law, Stacy Martin, Jennifer Ehle, Raffey Cassidy, Christopher Abbott, Logan Riley Bruner, Maria Dizzia, Meg Gibson, Daniel London, Sahr Ngaujah, Micheál Richardson, Matt Servitto, Leslie Silva, Allison Winn, Max Born, Willem Dafoe
Genre: Drama, MusicBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 2 votes)
Review: In 1999, future pop star Celeste (Natalie Portman) was a teenage girl (Raffey Cassidy) who was attending her music class in high school. After a brief chat with the teacher, she went to her desk and prepared for the lesson, but then a shot rang out and everyone in the room screamed: one of the students had entered the room and murdered the teacher. He had an automatic weapon with him and fired off a hail of bullets to make sure the schoolchildren knew he meant business, yet Celeste was not satisfied with that and tried to reason with the killer. For her trouble, she was shot in the neck and injured in the spine, while the rest of her classmates were executed by the maniacal pupil...

If ever there was an attention-grabbing opening to a film, director Brady Corbet had his all worked out with Vox Lux, like his debut Childhood of a Leader a pseudo-biopic of someone who never existed, but was a composite character leaving the audience mulling over who Celeste was supposed to have been inspired by. Before Portman took the limelight, we were served up two acts describing the shooting and the aftermath, where our heroine became a national sensation when she released her own self-penned songs about her experiences which handily doubled as modern sounding pop. By the close of this second act, she has become a star, with an irascible manager (Jude Law) into the bargain.

The two initial instalments went on for some time, relative to the amount of screen space offered Portman, who took her own sweet while to arrive as the focus. But this was necessary: we have gotten used to Celeste as goodnatured girl coping with trauma and newfound fame on which she will be able to build a career as a celebrity, but already she is making mistakes, such as the night she spends with a rock musician who gets her pregnant while still a teenager. When we catch up with the daughter in the latter 2017 sequences, she is somewhat confusingly played by the same actress who played Celeste, English actress and rising star Cassidy, and she is almost the same person in approach.

As far as personality goes, with the celebrity of her mother affecting Cassidy's Albertine in almost as damaging a manner as the shooting affected Celeste, without the benefits of making her a lucrative star. Fame was what was on Corbet's mind here, and he had had a taste of it himself as a pretty boy aspiring actor, however it was apparent from his demeanour here that taste had been enough and he had more pressing things on his mind. When the 2017 section sees a recent beach terrorist attack by radicals who sport disguises seemingly inspired by one of Celeste's pop videos, we are supposed to regard their new fame as the equivalent of Portman's megastar status. Or at least that's how Celeste immediately makes the connection, knowing that the media will fall on her like carrion to pick her bones clean of any claim to respectability.

Although it came across as a straightforward story of the rise of a pop performer, there was a lot going on here, with a curious contempt for celebrity in a manner that could only have stemmed from experiencing it. Corbet saw little difference between the escapist pop star and the fanatic with the gun: they both have their ardent followers, they both have their hate-filled opponents, they both crave a notoriety to keep themselves motivated, and when it boils down, being famous for something across the globe is a very twenty-first century way to live your life. With Celeste, she became a celebrity victim, but with the murderers, they are creating victims and getting their buzz off the back of those actions. Portman truly committed to her role in a manic style, either throwing tantrums, acting entitled after almost two decades of her career success, failing to boost either Albertine or her on-off estranged sister Eleanor (Stacy Martin) as if she secretly suspects she could live without them and simply get by with the adulation of her fans. Those fans are seen only occasionally, building her up as the support they need in their lives; the film can barely suppress a sneer of derision in Willem Dafoe's voiceover. Music by Sia and Scott Walker (his final work).
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

This review has been viewed 765 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf
   

 

Last Updated: