Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Movie Week - The Bling Ring

via behance.net
The theme for the next double feature is “girls gone wild.”  I figured that I’d start things with The Bling Ring.  Seems like a good place to start, right? 

I mean Coppola is a trusted name when it comes to filmmaking.  And I genuinely enjoyed Sofia Coppola’s first two features.  And the idea of high school kids breaking into the houses of celebrities seems interesting enough. 

What could go wrong? 

I wanted to like The Bling Ring.  I really did.  It’s got an interesting subject and a trusted director.  I went into it with high hopes and I liked the opening sequence.  I like opening heist was very well done and set things in motion nicely. 

But then we meet the characters and they’re possibly the least likable leads I’ve ever seen in a movie.   I felt no sympathy for them at any point.  I guess since they’re from the “screw up” high school, we’re supposed feel that they’re troubled, but they still feel supremely privileged. 

I didn’t care about them at all.  I was genuinely happy they got arrested.  I was rooting for the cops.  Can you wrap your head around that?  Even in End of Watch was pretty much rooting for the cops and the criminals equally.  But with The Bling Ring, I was rooting exclusively for the cops. 

Not even the victims are sympathetic.  That scene in Paris Hilton’s house is just disturbing on so many levels. 

I think that part of the problem with The Bling Ring is the structure.  I get that the movie is based on an article, but incorporating the interviews of them post-getting caught was disorienting and felt very superfluous.  And again I get that fame as a concept is part of the conceit of the movie, but I feel like showing the fame they received would have worked better in the final act. 

If you take the arc of Goodfellas and apply it this story, I feel like you’d have a better story.  I know that the moment I realized the kids were lying to the press about how things started, I turned against them.  Immediately. 

The Bling Ring had all of the ingredients of a teenage Goodfellas, but instead of sticking with that formula the ball was dropped. 

If there’s any positive to be found in The Bling Ring it’s that Emma Watson’s American accent is so much better than Charlie Hunnam’s attempt at one. 

That’s it.  That’s all I can find. 

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