Once again, Sofia Coppola confounds expectations with an astutely relevant approach to a true story. These events may be torn from the headlines, but they also echo the world around us. And Coppola is giving us a telling insight into youth culture and its obsession with the high life existence of vacuous stars like Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian. It's also a very funny film, and deeply chilling too.
Set in suburban Los Angeles, the story centres on Marc (Broussard), a new kid at high school who befriends the Rebecca (Chang), an opportunistic thief who raids unlocked cars then gets an idea when she reads that Paris Hilton will be out of town. They look up Hilton's address online, find the key under her doormat and have an evening of riotous partying in her house, stealing a few souvenirs to prove it. But when they brag about it, their friends (Watson, Julien and Farmiga) want in on the action, so they start raiding homes of a variety of their favourite stars, always finding an unlocked door or window.
Before they were caught, these teens stole more than $3 million worth of cash, jewellery and designer-label clothes. And arrest only made them more excited, because now they were household names themselves. Unsurprisingly, Coppola's approach to these characters is never judgmental, which sometimes makes the film difficult to watch. These teens are unconcerned about the morality of stealing from someone who won't even notice that anything is missing from their obscene stockpile. And their desire for instant fame and fortune is understandable because the entire culture glorifies just that through reality TV and tabloid news.
Continue reading: The Bling Ring Review
Sofia Coppola's true-crime movie 'The Bling Ring' is out now in cinemas but the director has revealed how a real-life jewellery theft in Cannes could have provided some ironic publicity.
In The Bling Ring, the true events that saw a gang of celebrity-obsessed teens burgle the homes of stars in an attempt to emulate the glitz and glamour of Hollywood is brought to life on screen with a cast of Emma Watson (Harry Potter, The Perks of Being a Wallflower), along with a young, up-and-coming Katie Chang, Israel Broussard, Claire Julien and Taissa Farmiga who play the light-fingered youngsters.
Sofia Coppola's New Movie The Bling Ring Was Inspired By Real Events.
In an interview with the BBC, Coppola admits that it was a challenge to not bring fame to the real thieves through the notoriety brought about by her film's success. Alexis Neiers, the inspiration for Watson's character, Nicki has already gained some degree of fame after she was the subject of a reality TV program and a Bling Ring TV movie. Coppola's first step was to change the names of all the characters involved, speaking of the way she handled bringing the story to life without portraying the burglars as role models: "I had to make that world seductive so you understand what they're drawn to. They are kids trying on these identities - they haven't figured it out. I didn't want to make those kids more famous, I didn't want to celebrate what they did," she says, "We are bringing attention to it, but I don't think they'll be made into cult heroes."
The stars had an unexpected bonding session...
The Bling Ring sees Emma Watson, Katie Chang and Claire Julien play a trio of fame-obsessed, thieves who specialise in targeting celebs. To get ready for this, director Sofia Coppola had her leading ladies perform a fake break in.
"Sofia wanted us to do a bit of bonding so one thing we did is a fake break-in of a house," Chang explained. "We broke into someone's house that Sofia knew. "They knew we were coming, so we broke into their house and we stole a bunch of stuff and it was actually kind of fun," she added at the premiere of the ambitious film. "I totally messed up the whole thing, though, because I was given a list of things that we had to get and I forgot, like, two of them,” she admitted. "So when we got out of the house we were all proud at how fast it was for us to find all the stuff and then we were like, 'C**p, we have to go back in there now and find this other stuff!'".
The film represents a further departure for Watson, who has dedicated herself to more ‘grown up’ roles since her infamous turn as Hermione in the Harry Potter movies, something her co-star in the films, Daniel Radcliff has achieved with his work on stage.
Gavin Rossdale, Taissa Farmiga, Katie Chang, Claire Julien, Emma Watson and Israel Broussard - Los Angeles premiere of A24's 'The Bling Ring' at Directors Guild Of America - Arrivals - Los Angeles, California, United States - Wednesday 5th June 2013
A group of teenagers become bored of their everyday lives while everyone around them enjoys their glitzy lifestyles in LA. In an attempt to become like the celebrities they idolise, they track down their glamorous houses online and plan robberies while working out when they are away for premieres and award ceremonies and such. Discovering a world of designer clothing, expensive jewellery, Rolex watches and wads of cash lying around becomes more than a temptation and the teenagers embark on an addictive routine raid of several celebrity homes with victims among the likes of Paris Hilton, Orlando Bloom and Lindsay Lohan. At first they appear to be getting away with their exploits, but it isn't long before they are found out and arrested and they learn that they must face up to the consequences of their crimes.
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Fame and fortune are attractive prospects for most people, but to one group of teenagers living in LA, it has become an obsession. Using the internet to track the whereabouts of the most stylish Hollywood icons, the adolescent crime group known as the Bling Ring repeatedly raid their homes while they're away helping themselves to everything from Rolex watches, jewellery, expensive designer clothes and wads of cash. Among their usual victims are Paris Hilton, Orlando Bloom and Rachel Bilson. While they get away with their crimes long enough to enjoy their loot for several months, it takes them being caught red-handed to fully understand the seriousness of their crimes and the consequences of their unashamed quest to imitate their style icons.
Continue: Bling Ring - Teaser Trailer