Ram­page a crazy ride

Col­lege girls go wild dur­ing hol­i­day break SPRING BREAK­ERS 1/2

Kapi-Mana News - - ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT -

Walk­ing that thin line be­tween high art and ex­ploita­tion, Spring Break­ers shines a light on the he­do­nis­tic world of Amer­i­can col­lege stu­dents and their pen­chant for day­glo biki­nis – only it’s not what you might ex­pect.

Open­ing with mu­sic video cuts of rau­cous spring break aban­don – and look­ing like an un­holy cross be­tween the last days of Rome and an episode of Mi­ami Vice on crack – Har­mony Korine’s sev­enth film seems to have snuck into main­stream theatres on the tanned backs of its for­mer Dis­ney-girl stars, Vanessa Hud­gens and Se­lena Gomez.

But this isn’t the all new Amer­i­can Pie or Brides­maids. This film isn’t even funny.

Suf­fer­ing from the uniquely first-world prob­lem of find­ing school and life re­ally, re­ally bor­ing, a group of col­lege stu­dents look for­ward to the hal­cyon ad­ven­ture that is spring break. Un­for­tu­nately, they’re broke.

Rec­ti­fy­ing this with a spot of armed rob­bery, the girls high-tail it to Mi­ami, leav­ing their morals and their clothes be­hind. The party life proves too much for them and they end up in county jail, in their biki­nis, with­out a prayer. En­ter Alien (James Franco), a small-time crook who bails them out and leads them on a down­ward spi­ral to lev­els of de­prav­ity and im­moral­ity that, let’s face it, we to­tally saw com­ing.

Korine’s wheel­house is ex­pos­ing the seamy un­der­belly of Amer­i­can youth cul­ture and what bet­ter way to do it than by de­spoil­ing a cou­ple of for­mer Dis­ney dar­lings? Hud­gens and Gomez are both ex­cel­lent and per­fectly cast as the vul­ner­a­ble Faith (Gomez) and the soul­less Candy (Hud­gens). But it’s Franco’s wannabe gang­ster, Alien, who sums up the whole ex­pe­ri­ence.

‘‘Look at all this shit,’’ he cries, brandi- shing his uzi like a squirt gun, sur­rounded by gaudy op­u­lence and half naked girls. ‘‘Look at all this shit. It’s the Amer­i­can Dream, all this shit.’’

Vis­ually, Spring Break­ers is the pin­na­cle of Korine’s of­ten un­set­tling, al­ways bizarre, col­lage style of film-mak­ing.

It’s al­most gar­ishly bright, repet­i­tive and jar­ring, with char­ac­ters re­peat­ing lines like ‘‘spring break, for­ever’’ over and over in a some­times dreamy coun­ter­point to ex­treme vi­o­lence. It doesn’t make for easy view­ing, but it is com­pelling.

That’s be­cause Korine wants view­ers to be lured into the mul­ti­plex by the prom­ise of sun-kissed, bikini-clad beauty, only to as­sault them with a cold dose of mind­less, self­ish vi­o­lence and bit­ter judg­ment.

It’s the ul­ti­mate heist, turn­ing fan­tasies into mill­stones and mak­ing the idea of ‘‘spring break, for­ever’’ feel more like an end­less night­mare than a dream come true.

Girls gone wild: Ash­ley Ben­son, Se­lena Gomez, Vanessa Hud­gens and Rachel Korine are brightly-coloured lures in Spring Break­ers.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.