Nicolas Winding Refn continues his run of wildly polarising releases with this brooding horror about a young model launching her career in Los Angeles, surrounding Elle Fanning’s innocent Jesse with vampiric fashionistas and disturbing predators to create a world of vacuous seediness that is as unwelcoming as it is hypnotic. Refn delights in drifting between artistic genius and B-grade schlock and while this can’t compare to his masterpiece Drive, it all lurches towards a gloriously absurd finale. Its passages of dreamlike surrealism and at times antagonistically slow pace will puzzle new audiences, but for fans of Refn’s previous films The Neon Demon is another lavishly stylized gem.

THE NEON DEMON POSTER

3 Stars

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