The Vox Lux movie is a drama which follows the successful music career of Celeste, played by Natalie Portman. Celeste experiences a major childhood trauma; she witnesses, experiences and is a survivor to a school shooting. This trauma becomes the cathartic release that leads her to become a pop culture sensation. Trauma and tragedies seem to follow Celeste in some way, all while she continues to gather fame and success. Her highly avoidant, addictive, and destructive patterns are revealed and followed in her personal life, but slowly leak into her professional life. Somehow, she always manages to deliver in her performances. This movie was released in 2018 and was directed by Brady Corbet. The screenplay was written by Corbet and Mona Fastvold. Check out various screen facts below.
Soundtrack by Sia
A movie that follows a fictional signing celebrity, Vox Lux has its own soundtrack. Songs are performed by Natalie Portman and most of the soundtrack was written by singer/songwriter, Sia Fuler. Sia has had her own struggles with fame and addiction, choosing to hide her face when cameras are around to maintain privacy since 2011.
Vox Lux Meaning
Vox Lux is Latin and translates directly to “voice light”. Creator Brady Corbet claims the title means “voice of light”. The phrase Vox Lux points to Celeste’s voice and the “light” or cathartic release it seemingly provides her.
Connections to Black Swan
Natalie Portman, who stars in both Vox Lux and Black Swan, is not the only connection the two movies share. Both movies end with Natalie’s characters having a breakdown before a performance, and both breakdowns were filmed in the same backstage dressing room location. Another connection the movies share is that both feature dances that were choreographed by Portman’s husband, Benjamin Millepied. Portman and Millepied met after working together on Black Swan (2010) and married in 2012.
Natalie Portman is not the only megastar in Vox Lux. Jude Law also stars as her manager. This was the fourth movie Jude and Natalie worked on together. Their other films are Cold Mountain (2003), Closer (2004) and My Blueberry Nights (2007). These collaborators took a decade break from each other before working on another film.
School Shooting Inspiration
The film starts on an extremely dramatic note with a school shooting. This scene draws on the real-life Columbine High School massacre in 1999. The scene in the film also took place in 1999 and famous imagery from the real-life tragedy was used to recreate a similar ambiance in the opening. The shooters plan in this scene was also the same plan from the real tragedy. There is a clear correlation.
Natalie Appears Late
The star of the film is not actually in the movie until the 53rd minute of it. Vox Lux is a total of 1 hour and 54 minutes long, meaning we do not get to see the star until about halfway through. The movie takes place over two decades and examines multiple points in Celeste’s life. Natalie’s late appearance is justified in how it was written and directed. As a result, Portman only took 10 days to shoot all her parts in the film.
Vox Lux is a captivating film, which incorporates historical facts into a fictional piece excellently. It explores the reality of trauma, hardships, avoidance, and addiction as well. The movie only brought in $1.5 million in worldwide box offices. A disappointing number considering the star power, innovation, and quality of the film. Despite the low box office figures, the movie is well worth the watch.