The Neon Demon (2016)

The Neon Demon (2016) movie poster

director Nicolas Winding Refn
viewed: 10/22/2016

Effin’ Nicolas Winding Refn.  At least that is how I’ve come to think of him.

I liked Drive (2011) (liked not loved).  Afterwards, I went back and saw Valhalla Rising (2009), Bronson (2008), and Pusher (1996).  And then Only God Forgives (2013).

Now, it’s possible that Nicolas Winding Refn is a genius and that Only God Forgives and now The Neon Demon too are remarkable cinematic works.  It’s even possible that at some point in the future, I too, will realize this and concede that my initial experiences with them were errant.

But as beautifully shot as some of this stuff is, Winding Refn starts resembling fellow Danish provocateur Lars Von Trier.  As in filmmakers who are totally up their own asses.  The Neon Demon skates close to the extreme misogyny of Von Trier’s Nymphomaniac (2013).  It’s a film ostensibly about women and beauty and ugliness.  Psychological horror.  Meant to be off-putting.

But am I the only one who found the film hugely problematic?  Not even in the more obvious moments of sexual violence but even in its quieter scenes?

I don’t know, man.  I recognize I could be wrong.  But I seriously don’t know.

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