Not just boring, irritating as well
- Vox Lux review by Alphaville
It opens with a shock but from then on it’s downhill all the way. Celeste becomes a pop singer. Fortunately we don’t have to sit through too many of the ditties she warbles, but unfortunately there’s little else going on except tons of pointless dialogue shot with bog-standard over-the-shoulder camera positions. Part I, with a teenage Celeste, is bad enough but, when Natalie Portman takes over for a thirty-something Celeste in Part 2, it’s awful. She acts her socks off in a grating voice while bonding with her teenage daughter and preparing for a concert.
Jude Law goes through the motions as her cliché of a manager, and Stacy Martin, so good in Redoubtable, is wasted as her sidekick sister. Only Raffey Cassidy, playing both the teenage Celeste and the older Celeste’s daughter, comes out of this with reputation enhanced. As for the songs, provided by Sia, well let’s just say that if you haven’t hit fast forward by the final concert, you will then.
3 out of 3 members found this review helpful.
Hollow showbiz drama, with some artistic pretentions
- Vox Lux review by LC
This was ultimately a frustrating viewing experience, as this film seemed to offer so much more. It starts with a bang (quite literally), and the first half (starring Raffey Cassidy as the young lead) points towards an interesting take on the nature of fame, celebrity and the exploitation of tragic events. Despite a portentious voice-over from Willem Dafoe hinting at earth-shattering events to come, however, the film ultimately goes nowhere. Natlie Portman takes over as the older version of the lead character, and the film keeps threatening to explore interesting avenues (copycat violence, the pop star as religion), only to ultimately ignore them. Instead we get a final ten minute scene of a mind-numbingly dull arena show performance, with Portman very unconvincing in the role of Madonna/Lady Gaga-esque pop diva, some instantly forgettable songs and generic light show and backing dancers....and that's it. The film doesn't come to any kind of dramatic climax, it just stops. There are enough arty flourishes that it makes you feel like something deeper must be being explored, but ultimately it's the same bog-standard 'showbiz can f*** people up' story that's been told a million times before. Not entirely awful - a great opening, and I pretty much enjoyed most of the first half - but ultimately this story just fizzles out.
0 out of 0 members found this review helpful.