Refn’s New Series ‘Too Old To Die Young’: Just as horrible and upsetting as you’d expect

Let there be neon.

Too Old To Die Young reviews guarding rotten tomatoes
'Too Old To Die Young': Miles Teller stars in director Nicolas Winding Refn's Amazon Prime 15-hour movie.

“Just as horrible and upsetting as you’d expect.”

Too Old To Die Young had its sneak preview at Cannes Film Festival (replete with walk-outs). The new TV series is set to debut next month on Amazon Prime. Based on the official trailer and the fact that the show is ultimately a 15-hour movie this looks to be Nicolas Winding Refn’s magnum opus:

WATCH: TOO OLD TO DIE YOUNG Official Trailer (2019) by Nicolas Winding Refn

And if you thought the Twin Peaks reboot in 2017 was a marathon, you can, as they say, hold my beer. TOTDY, which stars Miles Teller as a L.A. cop working both sides of the law, features 10 episodes with each clocking in at feature film length — 90 minutes.

As you might expect the trailer reveals a city awash in neon. Plus vast deserts. A colorful and quirky cast doing colorful and quirky things. All set to the wonderful electronica of synth maestro and composer Cliff Martinez (who’s collaborated several times previously with Refn).

Early reviews are exactly as expected: decisive.

Refn, like many arthouse style filmmakers, doesn’t pander to the super hero audience. So instead we get pregnant pauses, slow moving compositions and edits, and, of course, all mashed up to the beat of a bit of the ultra-violence.

Stark Insider -- San Francisco, indie film, the arts, filmmaking and videos by Clinton and Loni StarkTOO OLD TO DIE YOUNG

Too Old To Die Young reviews guarding rotten tomatoes
‘Too Old To Die Young’: Miles Teller stars in director Nicolas Winding Refn’s Amazon Prime 15-hour movie.

What the critics are saying:

“An intimate, human-focused film with broad allegorical potential.” (Little White Lies)

“In fact the film is so commanding in its presentation of social rituals and the natural world that it takes a while for the story to come into focus, yet for all the loping camera movements and narrative digressions, this never feels meandering.” (Chicago Reader)

Too Late to Die Young pushes its rhythmic approach to a satisfying climax in a closing sequence.” (IndieWire)

“There’s little narrative propulsion to Too Late to Die Young, yet it hums along with a vibrant humanity all the same.” (Globe and Mail)

“A lovingly textured addition to the coming-of-age genre.” (Hollywood Reporter)

WATCH: Too Old To Die Young on Amazon Prime Video

One headline in particular that’s grabbed some attention comes from The Guardian. In his review (4 stars out of 5) Peter Bradshaw calls the series “just as horrible and upsetting as you’d expect.” Refn and team must’ve gotten a kick out of that one as the quote quickly made it into the TOTDY marketing campaign, including here in this short Facebook promo video.

Regardless, the show currently holds a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes (29 critic reviews as of 05.24.2019). For fans this is very encouraging.

Refn’s new series is an Amazon Studios exclusive. Look for episode 1 of Too Old To Die Young to start streaming on Amazon Prime Video on June 14. Binge-watching, of course, is encouraged. Hanging around with Cartel soldiers, Yakuza assassins and mysterious vigilantes? Probably not so much.

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