Review by Lucía Santiago Dantés
As I see the cynical characters wandering around clubs, burglary and a life of self-indulgent, I couldn’t avoid to think since when, burglary is cool? has the world had gone that crazy? “The Bling Ring” after all, is based in real events. Those kids actually went and stole those celebrities houses. Just because they feel they can do it and get away with it. I remember the news. I remember the footage and photos of their burglaries on the TV and magazines. I remember the kids bragging while stealing Paris Hilton’s house on a security footage.This is a sample of the news on those days.
The story was too crazy, it was covered for most of the media at the time, and that’s how Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation) got the idea. Reading a magazine. A story born in Hollywood with characters chasing fame and money. It’s just the perfect brew for a movie. Flash forward a few years later and “The Bling Ring” premiered at Cannes Film Festival this year, as part of the official selection “Un Certain Regard”. It was very well received by the critics and attendants. Starring Emma Watson and American Horror Story’s Taissa Farmiga just to mention some names. For those who are about to see film or already saw the film, the location used for Paris Hilton is actually her real house. She was gracious enough to let Sofia Coppola in her mansion and shoot the scenes there.
This is Sophia Coppola’s Fifth’s Feature, and her fourth time at Cannes as a Director. Her past at the prestigious French Film festival were: Marie Antoinette(2006), The Virgin Suicide(1999) New York Stories(1989).
But who were The Bling Ring kids? At the time, they were a bunch of kids from Calabasas, California; their faces made national news in the U.S. around 2008 and 2009 when they were already stablished as a ring for burglary and already commited several robberies at celebrities houses like Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Megan Fox, Paul Oakenfold, Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr to steal their designers clothes, jewels, bags and everything they can grab and then brag about it with their friends and clubs, even on their facebook pages.. exactly as you see in the movie. Sofia Coppola tells she was inspired after she read the article at the Vanity Fair Magazine article by Nancy Jo Salles called “The Suspects Wore Louboutins“. The teen gang were very young, very cynical and smart enough to google the celebrity’s house address who wanted to rob. Their first one was Paris Hilton because they think she was dumb enough to leave her unlocked and probably the key under the mat. (and it was there! ah!)
The leader of the group real name was Rachel Lee, in the film she’s called Rebecca (portrayed in the movie by Katie Chang) Best Friend Nick Prugo name was also change in the film to Mark (portrayed in the film by Israel Broussard).
Alexis Neiers in portrayed by Emma Watson, in the film she’s called “Nicki”.
Also Taissa Farmiga portrays Tess Taylor, whose named was changed to Sam.
The film succeeds in portraying the character’s life. As well as the character’s antics and behavior. We don’t see much of that adoration to celebrities but a mere act of theft with greediness as a motivation. Which poses a question on the real intentions of these kids: where they really chasing fame through stealing valuable objects from celebrities, or was just there a mere act of greedy theft? also did they wanted also to be famous through their own acts? it is almost like chasing and stealing a bit of fame… perhaps it was all of the above. Coppola and the cast succeeds also on in portraying the cynical attitude of these teens, which is just beyond words. But let’s not forget the real lesson here: crime does pay.