Written by Ariadne
My dear beloved cinefreaks,
It’s been quite a while since the last time I wrote a review regarding a movie that had opened recently in cinemas. Yesterday , I attended the premiere of a movie which I had passionately awaited and anticipated for , at Athens International Film Festival. My silence, my dear cinephile audience, is now broken for the arrival of the exceptional The Neon Demon.
The world of fashion has never been portrayed more attracting and compelling than in this Nicolas Winding Refn’s allegorical fable. The Neon Demon is the triumph of a sequence of visual images full of neon lights, geometric shapes and rampant, acute sounds which resonate in every Abbey Lee’s high heel step on the runway, each seemingly innocent sigh by Jena Malone, and every Elle Faning’s lock of adolescent, fresh, golden hair.
The movie I witnessed yesterday as a deeply social and arousing film about human beings’ real essence, is not a story about a young model that comes fresh into the world of fashion filled with ambitions and aspirations, but the world we are living in, and the arrival of a new face on my stage which waves my disastrous upcoming way-out of it.
Since that, approximately, early scene where a wild beast is revealed as having rushed into Jesse’s motel room while she was away and her uncanny look through its fearless eyes and whole wilderness, we know that this is not going to be a barbie-doll tea party. Primitive instincts arise when you feel threatened; beauty, innocence and freshness are wanted, envied and desired; the neon lights and golden make-up that ornate your neck and caress your skin and shoulders shall corrupt your soul and as it seems, your literal and allegorical sparagmos will burn your enemies’ guts or nurture them stronger.
“They say beauty is everything. Beauty is not everything… is the only thing,” and like that, Nicolas Winding Refn spoke the biggest, most unrealized and bitter truth we all tried to conceal from ourselves when looking through the mirror.
The Neon Demon is a neon tale about the relentless pursuit of beauty in a world full of perfect replicas. It’s the pursuit of real magic in the fake Disneyland. It’s about you and the world you see around you, covered in glitter and neon advertisements.