Movies

This Supercut Of The Violence In ‘Drive’ Director Nicolas Winding Refn’s Films Will Prepare You For ‘The Neon Demon’

Nicolas Winding Refn announced today that shooting will begin early next year in Los Angeles for his next project, The Neon Demon (awesome title). The director is also on writing duties for this female-centric horror film based on Refn’s own fear of women. He spoke to THR about the impetus for the film:

One morning I woke and realized I was both surrounded and dominated by women. Strangely, a sudden urge was planted in me to make a horror film about vicious beauty. After making Drive and falling madly in love with the electricity of Los Angeles, I knew I had to return to tell the story of The Neon Demon.

Refn is one of those filmmakers that even when he misses (see: Only God Forgives) you can still expect to see a highly violent, visually stunning movie. The violence in his films is arguably more intensely savage than any filmmaker working today. All you have to do is watch the first 15 minutes of Valhalla Rising to see that Refn gives no f*cks. There are neck-breaking, disemboweling, and skull-smashing scenes that are just as disturbing as anything in cinema.

In the fantastic Drive, Refn pours on the gore in a manner that makes you wonder where it’s going to come from next. Christina Hendricks’ demise in the film comes out of nowhere, and the head-smashing elevator scene gets crazy quickly. Oh, and what about Albert Brooks using some poor unsuspecting goon’s head as a pin cushion? In Only God Forgives, Ryan Gosling get his f*cking arms cut off! We haven’t even discussed the Pusher series and Bronson, where Tom Hardy brutalizes everyone in the film.

On the Drive “Making of” feature, Refn speaks with Gosling about how he equates sex with violence. Speaking with RogerEbert.com, he went further in explaining this thought process.

Well, the use of violence is … I guess art is an act of violence, in a way. It’s an emotional outpouring, and I don’t really know … I think that violence in the cinema is necessarily a fetish. Emotionally, our artistic expression consists of sex or violence. It all boils down to those two pure emotions that we have. But where erotica or sexuality is not fantasy, because most of us do it, violence, on the other hand, is fetish, is fantasy. There is a sexuality to violence that I find very intoxicating. But I think that that’s what turns me on.

The brutal viciousness of Refn’s films is something to marvel at if you have the stomach for it, but Refn does everything right: fantastic lighting set-ups, incredible production design, beautiful cinematography. You can literally make a poster out of every frame in Only God Forgives. So, with that said, I can’t wait for The Neon Demon, but I’m wondering just how Refn will be able to top some of these scenes from his previous work:

(NSFW or for children, of course)

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