Film | Spring Breakers – Review

Spring Breakers
Spring Breakers (2012)

Plot – Four college girls hold up a restaurant in order to fund their spring break holiday. While partying, drinking, and taking drugs, they are arrested, only to be bailed out by a drug and arms dealer – Spring Breakers.

Director – Harmony Korine

Starring – Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez, Ashley Benson, James Franco, Rachel Korine

Genre – Crime | Drama

Released – 2012

Marketed as the movie where former Disney stars go bad, with both Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens moving away from their family-friendly roots to star in a movie about drink, drugs and promiscuity. Spring Breakers might look from the outside like just another raunchy coming-of-age comedy similar to 21 And Over and Project X, with four attractive girls going on a quest to have the best spring break ever, but at its heart, this is a much darker insidious movie that takes a cynical look at how easily previously good youth can be corrupted in the name of having a good time.

Spring Breakers (2012)

When watching a Harmony Korine’s film, you know it’s going to be one of the more unique and memorable movies you watch in a long time, not that this means they will be good, Spring Breakers proves this by being ascetically stunning and featuring some stand out performances, yet lacking the depth or characters development required for the viewer to engage with the plot.

For me this is down to the filmmakers’ decision to solely focus on showing the young girls letting loose for the first half of the movie, feeling like you’re viewing one long music video filled with partying, nudity and drinking. And none of the events that happen really do much to further the plot.

It’s only in the second half when we are introduced to James Franco’s character that things start to pick up and you finally get a character that doesn’t feel one-dimensional. This might be down to excellent writing or because of Franco’s skill as an actor.

Either way, once we meet this crazy/larger-than-life drug dealer who ensnares the four girls his web of drugs, sex and crime, the movie moves at a good pace, becoming ever more unpredictable and interesting. As far as four girls, their performances were solid enough to show what each is capable of if the writing was better.

Spring Breakers (2012)

Overall, Spring Breakers is a mixed bag, the directing style of Korine is hypnotic, the acting, on the whole, was solid and the second half of the movie contains more than a few surprises, sadly you have to get through a long dragged out first half that could have accomplished the same level of development in half the time.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

If you liked: The Rum Diary, The Place Beyond the Pines, Dope


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