Spring Breakers – Review (SXSW)

Harmony Korine isn’t a director that makes mainstream movies. From his screenplay for Larry Clark’s Kids to his own uncomfortably twisted Gummo, Korine has never been one to worry about what audiences think of him or his work. With Spring Breakers, he presents his most accessible work to date. An effort so astute that it may be the most relevant and important film ever made for this generation.

If you’ve seen the trailer for the film, then you know the plot. On the surface Spring Breakers is just a film about excess, but beneath the surface is a film that reveals the true face of today’s youth. The opening of the film is a series of images that emphasize the debauchery of spring break. The sweaty flashes of ass, boobs, drunken hotties doing keg-stands embeds itself in the viewers subconscious, padding the reality of what’s to come. It highlights the Facebook generation of self obsessed attention whores that love nothing more than sharing pictures of themselves in their underwear to the socially ambivalent masses.

After the bombarding images of booty bouncing to the sounds of Skrillex it’s time to become acquainted with the cast of beauties borrowed from the house that Mikey built. Candy (Vanessa Hudgens) is a yummy slice of wild that isn’t afraid to take whatever it is she wants. Brit (Ashley Benson) is a curvy blond that recklessly loves Candy. Faith (Selena Gomez) is a good girl flirting with the idea of being bad. She goes to church, believes in God, and cares what her Grandmother thinks of her. And finally, Cotty (Rachel Korine) is a sex kitten with attitude. Together the four of them feel like they could conquer the worldr, and who knows, maybe they will.

The girls have big plans. Plans that that take them to the shores of Florida for spring break. Only, the lovely ladies haven’t been able to save enough coin to bring these plans to fruition. So they do the only thing hot young girls can do in their situation. They rob a restaurant using a gun and sledgehammer. Well, all of them except Faith that is. I guess they figured God wouldn’t like it if she helped them, but God obviously didn’t mind Faith tagging along on their spring break adventure.

It doesn’t take long for the girls to land themselves in jail for excessive partying and drug use. Don’t worry, they are soon rescued by rapper/drug dealer extraordinaire Alien (James Franco). Alien introduces the ladies to a life of abandon.

Franco brings Alien to life in an unforgettable way. He makes it easy to both love and identify with the gangster. The ladies do a fine job of pushing themselves in unexpected directions, and Harmony Korine wraps up their performances with a beautiful pink bow.

Spring Breakers challenges viewers to take a hard look at where our youth are headed. It spells out in bright neon exactly what’s wrong with society and dares you to look away.

Rating: ★★★★½

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Donny Broussard

I enjoy the types of films that used to dominate late night television in the ’80s, spending time with my family, filmmaking, photography, Rubik’s Cubes, Diet Pepsi, building old Shogun Warriors model kits, Canon cameras, comic books, AOR, coconut ice cream, mac & cheese, cold pizza, popcorn, nachos, UL Football tailgating, film festivals, reading, Barry Manilow (don’t ask), films with both Goldie Hawn and Chevy Chase in them, Alf, Pac Man, 1979 Trans AMs, beer, Godzilla, Hooters (both the restaurant and ones girls like to keep hidden), and Bigfoot (he’s real). I’m just saying.

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