Young women turning to a life of crime for kicks – a popular subject in two recent films that make a great double bill.
In theaters now, The Bling Ring is Sophia Coppola’s follow up to the spectacular Somewhere (2010). The Bling Ring tells the true story of a group of California teenagers who break into celebrity homes while their owners are out and steal thousands of dollars of merchandise. Coppola aptly captures the allure of shiny bling and the pleasure of new things for the teenage characters. The film boasts top notch performances by new comer Katie Chang and veteran child actor Emma Watson (whose performance as Nicki treads a line into black comedy reminiscent of Nicole Kidman in To Die For).
In a recent New York Times article Coppola expressed that she felt it was important to do this film now since she has young girls. It is debatable as to whether the movie is as successful at showing the visceral power of crime for young women as Spring Breakers by Harmony Korine.
Featuring breakout performances by Vanessa Hudgens as Candy and Ashley Benson as Brit, Spring Breakers’ cinematography, editing, and pacing convey the sense of power and sexuality the young female characters get from their crimes. Even though the group of young women are initially led into their crime spree by a pimp-like figure named Alien played by a bizarrely mesmerizing, James Franco, each of the women decide when to start and stop their crimes on their own volition. I believe even though they commit crimes, the characters arguably end up being powerful representations of women. You decide.
The Bling Ring is in theaters now and Spring Breakers is on Amazon Instant and Apple iTunes.
– M.A ST JOHN (@theReelScoop)