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The Neon Demon

Nicolas Winding Refn
USA, Denmark, France 2016 / 117’

We all want to be beautiful, and we will do anything to achieve this,"says Nicolas Winding Refn. "That's the subject of Neon Demon, a horror in which there is no terror besides our own deeply rooted obsessions.Jesse is a 16-year-old girl from a small town who moves to Los Angeles. Her dream is to make it as a model. With a portfolio of photos taken by her hometown photographer, she lines up for a shot at the biggest agencies and tries out for the most famous designers. Among thousands of girls, her natural look and innocence stand out. In this poignant vision of the world of fashion, the director of Pusher and Drive changes course from his typical pictures of everyday life, psychology, and logic. He has made a film that is a cross between a music video and a drug-induced dream in order to get directly at his protagonists' desires and fantasies. He has created a pop-culture psychological thriller in which symbols are mixed up as in a crucible, and the rhythm of the electronic music and strobe lights buzzes with a sexuality that is dangerously combined with envy. I have always felt like there was a 16-year-old girl inside me. And this is who I wanted to portray, but I didn't know whose face I would have, says Refn. After meeting Elle [Fanning], I had no doubt.This wonderful child of Hollywood is becoming a mature actress, and she carries the weight of the entire film on her shoulders-the weight of probing the darkest aspects of humanity.

Krzysztof Kwiatkowski

Nicolas Winding Refn

Nicolas Winding Refn is a Danish film director and screenwriter. He established his status as a maker of cult films with his debut. The 1996 film Dealer was the first part of his Pusher series, through which he showed that he had a great sense of film genres, pop culture clichés, and archetypes. All of this can also be seen in Valhalla Rising, which is rooted in the world of Nordic mythology, and inDrive, which stars Ryan Gosling. Only God Forgives and Neon Demon are yet two more dark worlds that Refn has created straight out of his very modern imagination.


1996 Dealer / Pusher

2004 Pusher II – Krew na rękach / With Blood on My Hands: Pusher II 

2005 Pusher III – Jestem aniołem śmierci / I'm the Angel of Death: Pusher III 

2009 Valhalla: mroczny wojownik / Valhalla

2011 Drive

2013 Tylko Bóg wybacza / Only God Forgives

2016 Neon Demon

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Cast & Crew

director Nicolas Winding Refn
screenplay Nicolas Winding Refn, Mary Laws, Polly Stenham
cinematography Natasha Braier
editing Matthew Newman
music Cliff Martinez
cast Elle Fanning, Karl Glusman, Jena Malone, Bella Heathcote, Abbey Lee, Christina Hendricks, Keanu Reeves
producer Lene Børglum, Sidonie Dumas, Vincent Maraval
production Space Rocket Nation
Polish distributor Gutek Film
language English
colouration colour