Spring Breakers

Spring Breakers ★★★★

This my third time viewing Spring Breakers and each time I find myself being more and more sucked into its warped reality and reluctantly beginning to love it.

I absolutely hated this the first time I saw this, like most people I feel I misinterpreted it as empty voyeurism. I was thinking so more due to the outside influence of the audiences I found attracted to it. I'm not a big drinker, don't find appeal in the idea of sex with random people, never done drugs besides a small spell of weed - which even that I'm unlikely to ever find myself consuming again. At nineteen years old I find myself smack bang in the middle; with people younger and older indulging in this, in my personal opinion, incredibly hollow party culture that the film revels in. The kind of audience that I was seeing attracted to this movie, were that same party culture, who admired these characters and wanted their own spring break experience. Maybe this is only my own personal experience with it, but now I'm saying I was ignorant for interpreting it that way due to said outside influence.

After reading some reviews on it, before my days of using letterboxd, and finding some people absolutely loved it. So I decided to revisit it and this time I recognised the neon lit dreamy haze it creates, how the emptiness of the characters and disjointed story actually strengthen the pretty basic message Harmony Korine puts forward; commenting on how hollow modern youth culture is. It satires the culture with what I hope is a grand exaggeration of how grotesque it actually is, but I could sadly imagine this being the case in some situations. Best of all though I finally noticed the true genius of James Franco's performance as the corn-row sporting, grill teethed rapper and criminal Alien. Though even recognising all the strengths I was still reluctant to say I loved it.

Until this viewing, my third time watching it. I still think the message is basic, the characters are basic, the story is basic - in all those respects it doesn't have much to offer. But the way it manages to descend into a beautiful absurdity is in a word; mesmerising. Korine's previous works have been obvious in their disgusting aspects, but Spring Breakers showers it in a gorgeous neon world of sex and criminal exploits.

Taking ex-Disney stars Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens for what I assume is a deliberately disturbing transformation from cutesy tween idols to rake away at their innocence through spring break culture. While Gomez is the innocent, god fearing character who is not quite as easily seduced into the more explicit crimes. Ashley Benson, Rachel Korine and Vanessa Hudgens' characters start to meld into one, which is where the already empty nature of their artificial personalities begins to shine, where they are seduced further into their fantasy corruption.

Amplified by the loud atmosphere, going through the repetitive nature of constantly returning to montages of parties; accompanied by the usual aggressive dubstep of Skrillex and score by Cliff Martinez. The repetition gives it the dreamy atmosphere that indulges the audience into the world, gradually transitioning into a woozy nightmare of violence and crime after the should-be iconic scene involving Alien's unsettling rendition of Britney Spears' 'Everytime' on piano.

Though I'm still pretty reluctant to say so, I think I do love Spring Breakers a little more than I should. A neon-glowed dreamy haze of nightmarish qualities. I'm worried that if I watch it enough times I'll find myself convinced to get James Franco's glorious corn rows or Gucci Mane's ice-cream face tattoo to show my affection for it. Spraaaang breeeak forever bitchez!