3.27 – THE NEON DEMON and Beauty/Consumption

We conclude our NWR season with an episode focusing on his most recent film, the 2016 horror/psychological thriller/social commentary THE NEON DEMON. After similar reviews of the film, we look at the film’s exploration of beauty, the creepiness of both female and male gazes in this film, and what Refn has to say about a particularly…cut-throat industry. We also end with a retrospective on NWR’s work, and how it’s developed from the early days of PUSHER.



Next Week
Our next director mini-season looks at the work of Sofia Coppola. We begin with her breakout film, 1999’s THE VIRGIN SUICIDES. Watch it here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Virgin-Suicides-Kirsten-Dunst/dp/B06W57135C.
This Week’s Media
GODZILLA (2014): Gareth Edwards, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Ken Watanabe
REJUVENATRIX (1988): Brian Thomas Jones, Vivian Lanko, John MacKay
DERRY GIRLS (2017?): Lisa McGee, Saoirse-Monica Jackson, Nicola Coughlan
THE HUNGER GAMES (2012): Gary Ross, Suzanne Collins, Jennifer Lawrence
JOHN WICK (2014): Chad Stahelski, Keanu Reeves, Michael Nyqvist
GREEN ROOM (2015): Jeremy Saulnier, Anton Yelchin, Imogen Poots
MAD MAX: FURY ROAD (2015): George Miller, Tom Hardy, Charlize Theron
Rob mentions quite a few names by way of comparison at the start of this episode: Giallo horror (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giallo), Dario Argento (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dario_Argento), Grand Guignol (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand_Guignol), and David Cronenberg (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Cronenberg). (And Sam adds one of his favourite films of last year, GET OUT: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Get_Out.) Here’s more on the myth of Narcissus, which is behind some of what we talk about: https://www.britannica.com/topic/Narcissus-Greek-mythology. Rob talks about the triptych visual form of one of the episodes involving the models: http://www.tate.org.uk/art/art-terms/t/triptych. Finally, for those of you unfamiliar with the story behind one of Keanu Reeves’s moments of peak creepiness, have a read about Lolitahttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lolita.