Director: Harmony Korine
Starring: Selena Gomez, James Franco, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Benson, and Rachel Korine
Now available on Blu-Ray and DVD
Review by: Lexicon
Now, as I sit here writing this review, having just finished the film, I can safely say that this is a Harmony Korine film. That can be both a good and bad thing.
Spring Breakers is about four college students (Gomez, Hudgens, Benson, and Korine) and their desire to break away from mundane student life and experience the insanity that is Spring Break. Each girl has a different motive for the trip. Faith (Gomez) comes from a fairly sheltered upbringing and she regularly attends religious meetings held by a minister(?) played by none other than former WCW Heavyweight Champ, Jeff Jarrett. Jarrett actually fits the role really well, although his on-screen time is short. Candy (Hudgens) and Brit (Benson) seem to be unstable at best and are enabling each other's violent attitude. Cotty (Korine) gets dragged along for the ride and is somewhat in the middle between the two extremes. Rachel Korine is the wife of Harmony Korine and there has been some controversy as to whether Harmony was "pimping" his wife out with this film, as she has the most on-screen nudity of the four. And no, Gomez doesn't get naked. I really don't see a problem with the Korines choice, but some take movies more serious than they should.
My main statement for this film is: THIS IS NOT FOR EVERYONE. That goes without saying for almost every film, but this is a really polarizing movie. The way it's shot is not typical. Many have said, "It's a bunch of music videos strung together." While that would be a shortsighted way to look at it, it's not entirely true. Yes, there's a lot of "static" in this movie to drive home the point of the Spring Break atmosphere. This "static" acts as somewhat of a safe zone. By static I mean partying. Drinking, drugs, nudity, and whatever else you throw in the wash. When the movie opens, all I could think about was how stupid Spring Break was. By the end of the film, all I could think about was how Spring Break is merely a vacation. This movie is all about what happens when you don't want to leave the party. What happens when you don't want to go back to the life you live day-in and day-out. This is where Alien (Franco) comes in...
The best performance, by far, comes from James Franco and his portrayal of Alien, a druglord who bails the girls out of jail after a drug raid on one of the Spring Break parties lands the young tarts in jail. Franco is so good in the role that I believe the movie would have been a miss for me had they found someone else to fill the role. Alien really propels the movie into "interesting" territory. Alien plays the variable through the heart of the movie up until it's unorthodox ending.
Spring Breakers is a tough sell, and at times, a tough watch. Like I said above, it's not for everyone. And at times, I've wondered if the payoff was really worth the setup. I didn't hate Spring Breakers, but I don't think it's as profound as KIDS was for me when I first saw that film a few years back, which by the way I highly recommend searching out. However, I do think Spring Breakers has the potential to become a cult favorite down the road, and I also think it was important for Gomez to do something that was more mature to help shed her Disney reputation. And believe me, this is an 11 on the maturity scale. Go into the film with an open mind if you're going to watch it. If you have trouble doing such with films, I'd advise you to skip this one. For me, it gets...