Vox Lux

Vox Lux ★★★★

Vox Lux opens in such an edgy manner. It almost lost me instantly. Then the singing started, and I was forgiving. Then Natalie Portman arrived, and I was hooked. Vox Lux is alternately naturalistic and pretentious, a combination that mostly works. It's a bit Lars von Trier at times. Technically Vox Lux is a marvel, made with a fearless command of technique and completed by a great score, amazing cinematography, and fantastic editing.

The nihilism of pop lingers over Vox Lux. It may be about the pop world, but it has no love for it. It's about the power and utility of pop music, how it channels and creates emotions but doesn't make you think. In a similar way, Vox Lux itself lacks nuance and subtly as a film. It makes no attempt to hide the shallowness of the commercialised world it condemns as reality. A reality of constant disasters perpetrated by people. It's about a world that doesn't work as it should, and children brought up in a violent time. Vox Lux is inconclusive, a film without answers. Its shaky first half is offset by the perfect second half, one which extrapolates one day to tell an entire story. The world is violent and shallow, pointless and heartless, and pop music is a deal with the devil, a promise to provide happiness in return for forgetting our pain. It's all a show and Vox Lux is a reminder of that.

Side-note: In a world that made sense, Natalie Portman and Jude Law received Oscar nominations for their performances here.

2018 Ranked

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