Monday, July 4, 2016

Truly, Truly, Truly Outrageous

I, ahhh...

I watched The Neon Demon tonight.  Also known as "America's Next Top Corpse".

I have to admit, I did not know what to expect and I kind of got what I almost expected but since I didn't know what to expect it threw me for a little bit of a loop which means I must write stream of consciousness style in order to fully process what I have just witnessed.  Here be spoilers.  Run, now if you don't want your soul scarred by them forever.

It starts with your standard "I'm going to run away and become a model" bullshit because girls aren't allowed to admit they're good at anything but being pretty.  Our girl Jesse is staying at a skeevy motel run by creepy-pedo Keanu Reeves (who has, like, four lines and he reads them like he does any other set of lines: as if he's literally made of cardboard, which means he should be up for some kind of an award soon, I guess.)  She's kind of seeing the guy who took her first set of photos for her portfolio and he's pretty much the only nice person in this movie which is the exact OPPOSITE of how "Trust me, I'm a photographer" normally works out.

Enter Ruby, the makeup artist.   She seems OK, if a bit on the "predatory lesbian" side of the fence.  She just wants the new girl to have some fun and make some contacts in the industry, right?

Well... she starts out nice, anyway.
Right.  Well, yeah.  The girls she's introduced to instantly hate her which really sets the tone for things.  Jesse gets signed up with an agency and is immediately booked with, like , THE top photographer in the country right now which still ends up feeling gross because he closes the set, slathers her in gold paint, ruining a beautiful vintage 70s camera, and we find out that Jesse is really only 16.  Skeeeeeeeeeeevy.

But, hey.  She's pretty and she can make money from that, right?

I think the message in this shot is that fame is a drug and it'll do weird things to your face... Like meth.
From this point forward, Jesse is not the naive farm girl we initially thought, she's a calculating bitch who runs roughshod over her elders' careers, occasionally lets mountain lions into her hotel room and passes out at the sight of roses while bleeding a LOT from small cuts on her hand.  And then she gets the best part in runway shows, pisses a lot of people off including the nice-guy photographer, has to literally throw the lesbian lust interest across the room to prevent clam-to-clam rape and gets eaten alive by Ruby and the other two models for being a complete bitch.

No, seriously.  Eaten alive.  As in "Chow Down at Chik-Fil-A".  Not an example of pretty language.  Literal food.  Which is weird because they make a point of stating earlier in the movie that they don't eat.  An "I don't drink... wine" moment?  Maaaaaaaaaaaybe.

I mean, you knew this had to happen when Ruby went to town on her latest dead client.  Oh, hey, boob.

What did we learn from all of this?

Besides the fact that Australian girls have a mean right hook?
Well, we learned that Nicholas Wending Refn is kind of a freak in the best way possible.  We learned that Jena Malone has weird-ass nipples and menstruates like she's parting the damn Red Sea.  We learned that metaphors for the cut-throat world of modeling can never be subtle.  We learned that anything can be forgiven if you throw enough glitter on it.  And, finally, we learned that Elle Fanning can literally look like at least 4 different people depending on the lighting and makeup used on her because I could have sworn that they replaced her with Emma Stone at one point.

This girl is a chameleon.  I kind of hate her a little.
In all seriousness, though, this movie is STUNNING.  It is, visually, one of the best movies I've seen in ages.  You really don't CARE that the plot is so simple.  Sometimes, simplicity is best.  This throwback to Blood and Black Lace, mixed with a heaping helping of Elizabeth Bathory and a splash of Jem and the Holograms is... well, it's not something I'd recommend to everybody, nor is it something I'd watch more than once, but it's DEFINITELY something I'm glad I watched.

It gives me so much insight into how Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell still look so good.

If trippy, beautiful, cinematically brilliant horror is your thing, this is for you.

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