Review: The Neon Demon

The Fashion World has teeth!

The Neon Demon is a fascinating film  layered in many levels, a rare treat full of cameos that will leave you wondering why it did not get a larger release for national distribution. Nicolas Winding Refn wrote and directed this disturbing picture, anyone that has seen Bronson (Tom Hardy) and Drive  (Ryan Gosling) is fully aware of the magnitude of macabre his movies are capable of reaching.

Elle Fanning (Trumbo, Super 8) is Jesse a very young girl who leaves her small town for Hollywood where she seeks to break into the competitive world of fashion modeling. Sounds cliche and redundant in formula but this film is far from it, characterizing the horrors that await any unsuspecting individual that enters into a city with eyes ignorant to what awaits them in the dark. Add to the mix that Jesse is a natural beauty with the “it” factor that others want and the industry demands to have. She is a swan in a lake of crocodiles, unfortunately in our society the beautiful- innocent alike are quickly destroyed and always in danger. Jesse does makes friends but it is safe to say that everyone’s intentions are not altruistic.Combined with a sleazy motel owner(I don’t want to spoil the cameo) and a group of models reaching the end of their careers, threatened by the fresh young blood seeking to take what they have fought years for you have a trajedy waiting to be made an example of.

Fans of Darren Aronofsky will be delighted, this movie could be compared to the fashion world’s Black Swan  though it should be stated that The Neon Demon deserves respect in its own right. Those not too fond of the horror world should be warned that it does have  gruesome aspects and a symbolic facet of body horror that will have you sitting through the credits contemplating what you just watched and if you have the stomach to experience it again.

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