The Uncut Gems Podcast – Episode 35 (Only God Forgives and The Neon Demon)

I have to come clean: my relationship with Nicolas Winding Refn and his cinema is far from straightforward. I loved his early stuff as well as Drive, but knowing what kind of an artist he is today I have to say that I tend to enjoy movies that hardly represent his current artistic style. Therefore, I was somewhat trepidatious coming into this episode, because – as you may imagine if you listen to the show and read my ramblings – I see myself as a glass-half-full kind of person. Well…

In this conversation we revisited Refn’s two movies I have had a rather tumultuous relationship with: Only God Forgives and The Neon Demon, both of which I have in the past given rather negative reviews. As you find out if you tune in to the episode, I may have warmed up to one of the two movies (and I was myself surprised as to which one ended up winning me over), but I still remain reserved as to Refn’s work; he’s still a bit too pretentious for me. And I don’t really mind when artists have an ego or when they indulge; it’s just that Refn’s self-indulgence strikes me as slightly annoying and maybe offensive to my intellect as a viewer. But to understand more of this perspective, you’ll have to tune in and listen. I can only guarantee that the conversation we ended up having was quite illuminating and honestly inspiring as we didn’t really leave a stone unturned. We talked about Refn’s style, his visuals, his indulgences, the surface-level thematics he knowingly embeds in his movies and the rare occasions when his work cuts a bit deeper than he may have envisioned himself. We talked about Ryan Gosling, Elle Fanning and even Keanu Reeves and much, much more so all I can say is that I invite you to listen to this nearly four-hour-long discussion about Nicolas Winding Refn and his cinema.

Tune in and enjoy!

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