Vox Lux (2018)

vox lux poster 2018 movie natalie portman
6.0 Overall Score
Story: 6/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 8/10

Good looking

Great premise is let down by a dull movie, bad accents

Movie Info

Movie Name: Vox Lux

Studio: Killer Films

Genre(s): Drama/Musical

Release Date(s):  September 4, 2018 (Venice)/December 7, 2018 (US)

MPAA Rating: R

vox lux raffey cassidy

So I’m confused…you say you’re from Long Island, but you have an English accent?

Celeste Montgomery (Raffey Cassidy) finds herself thrust into stardom when she survives a school shooting and writes a song about the experience.  With her manager (Jude Law) and her sister Ellie (Stacy Martin) helping her, Celeste is rocketed to international success.  Now, Celeste (Natalie Portman) is an adult with a teen of her own named Albertine (Raffey Cassidy) and her past is catching up to her.

Written and directed by Brady Corbet, Vox Lux is a musical drama.  The film premiered at the Venice Film Festival and was met by average to negative reviews.

Vox Lux sounded great.  It was a look at a faded pop-star (in the vein of Britney Spears), the corruption of fame, and had a solid cast.  Unfortunately, Vox Lux missed the mark and feels half-baked.

vox lux music video masks

Some wear helmets…I wear bedazzle!

The story had so much promise.  With the start with a school shooting and “fame” that follows victims of events like that, Vox Lux was pulling no punches.  Replacing something like The Mickey Mouse Club with a countrywide tragedy, it touches more of America, but Celeste’s breakdown just doesn’t go past being a cliché.  The movie tries to be too many things through the course of the film.  You add the weird voice-over narration by Willem Dafoe, and it feels almost like a Wes Anderson comedy (but the story doesn’t feel ironic or comedic).

Generally Natalie Portman does a good job, but she doesn’t work here.  Viewers expecting a “Natalie Portman movie” might be surprised to find her showing up so late into the film.  She’s sporting a really bad and thick Long Island accent which really doesn’t match with Raffey Cassidy who plays Portman as a youngster (she has an English accent).  Though Cassidy looks a lot like Portman, it is rather distracting in that sense.  Jude Law could have been expanded in his role as well.

vox lux natalie portman concert

…and then the Willem Dafoe narration kicks in making it feel like a Wes Anderson movie

The movie does have a decent look and stylish directing.  The opening sequences involving the school shooter are pretty terrifying (and could be a lot for some viewers), but it is tempered with music video and concert sequences that provide a great contrast.

Vox Lux missed the boat.  It tried to comment on too many things (fame, a family drama, gun-control, etc.) and really explores nothing as a result.  The movie’s tone is all over the place and the film seems like it is almost a comedy at points.  I can’t really recommend this movie despite having a good cast and nice visuals…it is brightly colored candy that just tastes sugary.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

Leave A Response