Spring Breakers

Spring Breakers ★★★

Purposely mindless and trashy, with importance given to rap video aesthetics way over plot or dialogue, it's difficult to tell whether Spring Breakers has it's tongue in its cheek or not. Maybe even director Harmony Korine doesn't know.
Even though it's just teenagers dancing to dubstep, acid-coloured beach wear and bouncing, beer-soaked titaays, here Miami's spring break hedonism is portrayed as something quasi-spiritual, much in the same way that the rave scene in the late 80s/early 90s sometimes is.

The four hood rat pleasure-seeking girls the film follows are looking to lose/find themselves in this vulgar paradise, but throughout they say little more than "woo!", and do little more than pose in their skimpy bikinis (and pink balaclavas when in Law Breakers mode). At least James Franco's character, Alien, has a personality. A funny and ridiculous white rapper - not a million miles away from Gary Oldman's dreadlocked Drexl in True Romance - Alien struts and preens like a likeable Vanilla Ice and is prone to cutely amusing braggadocio. "Look at all mah shit!" he says, showing the girls around his crib, "look at mah nunchucks!".
A real rap star, Gucci Mane, is the only major black character in the film, and, of course, he's the villain.

The cinematography glows gorgeously, there are many memorable moments, like a single-shot robbery scene, and the poolside Britney Spears singalong, but the film oddly lacks energy. It becomes more woozily dreamlike as it crawls along, Alien repeatedly murmuring his mantra "sprinnnng breeaaak. Spring break foreverrrrrr... " and the film slips into a drugged-out slur, with action and dialogue looping over and over. I had difficulty keeping my eyes open.
The film's shootout finale is like the weirdest episode of Miami Vice ever, so there's definitely that.

I don't know. It's seductively photographed banality.

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