I walked into “Vox Lux” with different expectations, overall, this film was something else in a positive way. It is a psychologically and visual ride with where the narrator (narrated by Willem Dafoe), will take viewers into a dark, yet unexpected journey. A journey of violence, pressure, and fame. I feel this is the type of movie that fits Natalie Portman after her performance in “Black Swan” (2010). She seems to play the roles of people that are about to perform in front of crowds well. Jude Law is also brilliant, however, Portman and Law are not the big focus as the trailers make it seem.
“Vox Lux” follows the story of a young girl Celeste (played by Raffey Cassidy), someone who experiences a tragedy, but after her tragedy, she unexpectedly becomes a huge pop star with an incredible career ahead of her. Her agent (Law) puts somewhat pressure on her. to succeed. There is young Celeste and old Celeste. The older one being Natalie Portman. Things start to spiral out of control as they realize different global events happen as their tour is on the road. From that point on, things get more pressuring and out of control for both the Celeste characters and for the agent. Dafoe’s deep, narration voice plays into the psychological suspense of the film.
The director and writer Brady Corbet is still fairly new at directing but has some memorable acting careers ranging from all kind of films. Films ranging from “Thirteen” (2003), “Funny Games” (2007), Force Majeure (2014) and many more. However, I will say he does a fine job at directing an intense thriller and drama like “Vox Lux.”
My attention was grasped from the very opening shot to the very ending shot of this film. I was reading the cinematographer for “Vox Lux” was done by Lol Crawley. Crawley did the cinematography for a melodrama I really like called “45 Years” (2015). One element I noticed though, was in “Vox Lux” he really darkened the choreography moments with Portman. That is an element that definitely plays an importance to the darkness of “Vox Lux.”
Overall, “Vox Lux” is a film worthy of multiple viewings. I wish I caught this movie at the Chicago International Film Festival this year. It has a limited release, but it is playing around the Western Suburbs of Chicago. If viewers want to be in for a dark, yet entertaining treat, “Vox Lux” cannot be missed. I also give a lot of credit to the young actress Raffey Cassidy. The last movie that I really enjoyed her in was “The Killing of a Sacred Deer” (2017). That was similar to “Vox Lux” Cassidy is talented at playing young actors in pressuring scenarios.
Three and a half stars.