Kicking the Tweets
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Vox Lux (2018)

If Lars von Trier had re-imagined The Neon Demon as another iteration of A Star is Born, then abandoned the project half-way through (necessitating a Vonnegut-style narration by Willem Dafoe to fill in gaping theme/plot/character chasms), the wobbly product would be a dead ringer for Vox Lux. Brady Corbet's follow-up to 2015's criminally underseen The Childhood of a Leader has a higher-watt cast (including some von Trier alumni), a bigger-looking budget, and ambitions of critiquing everything from pop culture to gun culture to Trump culture. Sia wrote the music for this film about a vapid, angry chanteuse (Natalie Portman) whose rise to fame might have been supernaturally inspired. But Sia is not a vapid artist, and hearing her deliberately forgettable tunes only compounds the ennui as Vox Lux, like its protagonist, fumbles drunkenly and disgracefully from audacious heights, creating as fleeting a story as last week's (or yesterday's) pop scandal.

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