Yes, another movie ripped straight from the news headlines. And recently these have been doing really well, and turning out to be great movies (“Argo”, “Blue Caprice”, “Zero Dark Thirty” etc). Now we’ve come to “The Bling Ring”, a movie about a group of celebrity-obsessed teenage thiefs who rob the likes of Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton. Which sort of tells you what kind of movie this turns out to be; colorfully stylish, and overly glamorizing of celebrities. This would’ve been a great movie if not for a few problems I have with it.
The film stars Emma Watson, Israel Broussard, Katie Chang, and Claire Julien, who aptly take on the roles of the teenage thiefs, with Emma Watson giving the best performance of the film playing conniving Nicki Moore. She was darkly funny in the role, and everytime she came on the screen my blood was boiling. Leslie Mann also shows up, giving a good performance as usual playing Nicki’s mother, and alternative rock musician Gavin Rossdale, of the band Bush, makes an appearance as a sort of pawn-shop owner named Ricky. As expected, some of the celebrities make cameo appearances, usually in archival format.
The film was written and directed by Sophia Coppola, and based upon a Vanity Fair article titled “The Suspect Wore Louboutines”, by Nancy Jo Sales. And in a way it was a good adaptation, I skimmed through the article (which I do recommend reading as it is an excellent article) a few times and Sophia got it down pretty well, but she made one huge mistake; the characters were so shallow and fake to the point of being annoying, and unrealistic. Even though this is based on actual events I had a hard time believing that these were real people based upon how shallow they were. Okay, not that hard a time as there are people who are that shallow, but you know what I meant.
And that dragged the film down quite a bit, along with the annoyingly thundering rap music — which gave me a migraine. But I would like to praise Sophia’s style though, I love her personal style when directing films like this. And while so far I have only seen this and “Lost in Translation”, it’s pretty easy to see what she’s going for; a colorful, eye-popping visual style. And another thing I’d love to praise is the pacing of this film, while it could’ve been a longer film the pacing made it flow nicely and there was never a dull moment.
In conclusion, while the shallow characters, slightly uneven script, and thundering rap music dragged the experience down somewhat for me, “The Bling Ring” was a stylish, funny, and well-acted film that could’ve been much worse than it actually was. But thanks to Sophia’s excellent direction style and pacing, it turned out to be more than watchable.
My Rating: 7/10
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