Vox Lux Review - A Hypnotic, Gripping, Mesmerizing Film

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

Vox Lux, from Focus Features, brings to the screen a powerful statement, an politically charged indictment that symbolizes the seismic metamorphosis’ society continues to experience and those who are left to pick up the pieces.

Directed and written by Brady Corbet Vox Lux stars Natalie Portman, Jude Law, Raffey Cassidy, Stacy Martin, Jennifer Ehle, Willem Defoe, Christopher Abbot, Maria Dizzia, Natasha Romanova, Daniel London, Matt Servitto, Candace Smith, Leslie Silva and Meg Gibson.

The film begins in documentary style with Willem Defoe as the narrator. We enter the world of superstar Celeste, played by Raffey Cassidy and Natalie Portman. Her humble beginnings can be seen in a Christmas morning video where she and her sister Eleanor played by Stacy Martin, have opened the presents and are now the stars of the home movies.

The film fast forward to Celeste returning from Christmas break as an eighth grade music student at a Staten Island High school. She and her teacher, Ms. Dwyer, played by Maria Dizzia, talk about her haircut, how attractive she looks, the need for change.


Mary, Queen of Scots Review – Gripping Historical Drama Filled with Betrayal, Rebellions, Lust and Conspiracy


It’s 1999. A boy enters the room. He states his name. Ms. Dwyer the first adult to encounter him is killed. Celeste, played here by Raffey Cassidy, is in shock and unable to move. The shooter calls her by name and orders her to move to the back of the room. Attempting to save her fellow students, she is shot within seconds SWAT enters the school.

It is too late.

For the single survivor Celeste begins the road to physical recovery. We meet her family sister Eleanor, played by Stacy Martin, her mom, played by Meg Gibson, and dad, played by Matt Servitto, at the hospital.

Eleanor becomes the guardian defacto. From this point forward she watches out over Celeste, sooths her when she is unable to cope, tolerates her outbursts, a penance for not being present to protect her at the shooting.

When asked to speak at a vigil, Celeste and Eleanor write and preform a song. Our narrator cuts in at this time, and he explains the song becomes an anthem for a hurting nation, and Celeste is invited to submit a demo track for possible representation.


Stan & Ollie Review - A Shining, Nostalgic, Sentimental Portrait of Early Hollywood Stars


Her parents hire a manager, played by Jude Law, and we also meet Josie, the publicist, played by Jennifer Ehle, who explains the upcoming possibilities for appearances . . . if all goes well in the testing phase, she adds.

It does.

As the film from the first two acts into he present we see the Celeste now played by Natalie Portman, a global superstar, with entourage, paparazzi, and of course her every whim indulged, her anguish; sedated, and her extravagances supported.

As our narrator explains her survival created a life she never dreamed possible and now, for some unknown phenomenon, mass shooting has become defined and part of American vernacular and culture. It is as if somewhere someone crossed the wires and while the lights are still on the thinking has shorted out.

Vox Lux is mesmerizing from the moment the final screen credits roll in the beginning of the film to the neon, techno-pop, electric light show ending.

Natalie Portman gives another career defining performance. She is a perfect mess, emotionally and physically unstable, her outbursts chilling, vicious and mean and immediately loving.

Raffey Cassidy presents a strong foundation delivering a perfect performance as the younger Celeste. She is a show stealer and has double duty playing both the younger Celeste and the daughter of Celeste, Albertine. Stacy Martin’s performance from guardian to prisoner is so clear, strong and real.


Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle Review – Four Stars! Awesome, Stunning


Jude Law was also very impressive. It wasn’t just the ladies show, he delivers on the role of dedicated manager and there just something different, intangible, that jumps from the screen.

As someone who has been on the waiting side of delayed press days, the aspects of the media day were played very well, and authentically.

Brady Corbet, as both director and writer, keeps the time line always presents. Major catastrophic events that shaped society are spoken in brief ambiguous moments, and the audience immediately knowns the exact date.

Vox Lux is highly political and some could see as a landmine capitalizing on a very violent aspect of society. And others will see a political indictment, without assessing blame or demanding answers to the unanswerable.

Most people will miss the gestation period of Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, which is understated, and presented well in the film and doesn’t manifest immediately following the shooting. It isn’t until arm chair web MD’s would believe that time of mental incapacitations should be over that she is unable to cope.


The Favourite – A Devilishly Dark Comedic Drama


Vox Lux is a gripping, riveting hypnotic film with shocking, captivating performances. Politically charged the film is symbolizes the seismic metamorphosis society continues to experience.

Vox Lux opens December 7, 2018 in select markets. See this film.

Haute Tease

  • The Phoenician Scottsdale Review - A Phenomenal Family Vacation Destination

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    "Family-friendly" and "luxury resort" are often mutually exclusive, however, one Scottsdale luxury resort, The Phoenician, has managed to marry the two in spectacular form and remains a place families can stay, enjoy, play and parlay into memories that'll last a lifetime.

     
  • Honeymoon In Vegas Review – Go For The Music, Stay For The Elvis Impersonators

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Writing reviews to send out is actually quite difficult for me.  The truth is, I’m a theatre snob, and I’m pretty hard to please.  Without creative geniuses such as Rodgers and Hammerstein, Leonard Bernstein, or even Stephen Sondheim, it’s hard for me to give my endorsement.  Not this time.  You will love ‘Honeymoon In Vegas’.

     
  • Brett Johnson Holiday Collection Preview Event at NYC's SoHo House

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Gotham PR and Jade Dressler are hosting a private holiday preview event, in New York City, for Brett Johnson, producer, designer, billionaire, to showcase his 2013 Holiday Collection of luxury leathers and shoes.

     
  • One Week With The NYPD (Reprinted with Permission)

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    With the rise in excessive and deadly force, a blog in 2007 began with "And Justice For Sean," written when a Queens County Grand Jury handed down an eight count indictment show justice, elusive, is still possible.

     
  • Celebrity Interview: A Conversation with Belle Writer Misan Sagay

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Misan Sagay, recently participating in press interviews, brings an exceptionally engaging story of an interracial love affair, scandal, passion and courage to the screen as author of the screenplay for the box office beauty "Belle" from Fox Searchlight Films.

     
  • Celebrity Interview: Speaking with Phil Rudd of AC/DC on New Album and Euro Tour

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Phil Rudd, the bad boy drummer for the wildly successful Australian band AC/DC who has seen his share of troubles recently, is launching a new album, Head Job, and embarking on a Euro Tour with his new band-mates.

     
  • The Annual NYC “Join The Voices! Run/Walk” in Central Park

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Voices Against Brain Cancer, in partnership with New York Road Runners, will host its annual “Join the Voices! Run/Walk” on Sunday, December 2, 2012 in Central Park, New York at 8:15am.

     
  • Novitiate Review - Performance Driven Indie Delivers

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Novitiate, from Sony Pictures Classics, presents an insider's view behind the scared walls of the nunnery as it follows a group of young women who believe they have been called to the live a life of sacrifice in service for God.

     
  • Decorated Virginia State Police Trooper Murdered, Two Others Injured, in Random Shooting

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Trooper Chad P. Dermyer, who one year ago was receiving an accommodation from his superiors, was shot and killed at the Richmond Greyhound Station by an ex-con who opened fire, in the crowded terminal, after a brief verbal encounter.  

     
  • The Sorcerer's Apprentice Ignites at World Premiere

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, the newest film from the collaborating team of Nic Cage, Jerry Bruckheimer and Jon Turtletaub, held its World Premiere at the historic New Amsterdam Theater located at the cross roads of the World, Times Square New York, New York.

     
  • HL London: New Music from the London Underground

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    I'm away for a week from tomorrow, still working but from a beach rather than the office. I'm not sure whether I'll have access to a signal reliable enough to send music to you over the next seven days, so I'm sending everything now, please digest it all at your leisure! 

     
  • Beltway Insider: Trump/Iran; Pushes For Red Tuesday; Khashoggi Killing; Immigrant Caravan Swells; Economy; James Bulger

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Donald Trump, in this last week before the November 6, 2018 mid-term elections, stumped for the GOP around the nation, as this election will expose the mood of the country midway into the troubled Trump Presidency.

     
  • HYENA Review – Graphically Violent, a Shocking Story of Crime, Corruption and Exploitation

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    HYENA, from Film 4 and Number 9 Films, presents, an explosive tale of police corruption with vivid, realistic and stunning depiction as the detectives delve deeper into the world of corruption, crime and the Turkish/Afghan Drug trade.

     
  • Gift Guide: Father’s Day Gifts Guaranteed to Impress

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Finding that perfect gift for the important "dad," whether that be your own father, husband, boyfriend, brother or other deserving and meaningful man has become somewhat of a treasure hunt, to save time we've come up with a few brilliant gift ideas.

     
  • Beltway Insider: President Pushes Gun Reform; Legal Weed Sales High; 21st State Allows Med Marijuana; Cannabis Op-ed

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama, during the last week of the holiday season, has continued his aggressive action toward curbing gun violence by implementing additional executive orders in tandem with the 23 signed one year ago.