Spring Breakers

  • Year:2012
  • Rating:R
  • Director:Harmony Korine
  • Cast:James Franco, Selena Gomez, Vanessa Hudgens, Heather Morris
  • Release Date:May 09, 2013
  • Distributor:Icon
  • Running time:94 minutes
  • Film Worth:$17.00
  • FILMINK rates movies out of $20 - the score indicates the amount we believe a ticket to the movie to be worth

A thrilling and provocative cinematic trip, which rides on James Franco’s riotous lead performance, and remains admirably enigmatic to the very end.

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Polarising as he may be, Harmony Korine (the scribe behind Kids and writer/director of Gummo) has the rare ability to make us laugh, recoil and marvel at the same time. And that’s certainly the response yielded by the brave auteur’s latest feature, Spring Breakers, which takes the titular American ritual and pushes it to its darkest extremes.    

Short of money to embark on their spring break dream, four best friends (Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Benson, Rachel Korine, Selena Gomez) rob a restaurant, and are soon headed for Florida to join the partying hordes. But the cops arrive, and the girls end up in jail, only to be bailed out by a white rapper and drug dealer named Alien (James Franco, complete with tats and a gold grill). The girls become immersed in Alien’s world, which grows more sinister and strange by the second, with Korine using trippy visuals and a techno score to create a fantasy world that hints at the characters’ headspace and desires.  

In many ways, this trashy, dazzling but enigmatic film belongs to Franco’s Alien, a wannabe gangsta who just doesn’t have the guts or heart to be a cold-hearted thug. In one of Spring Breakers’ funniest moments, Alien boastfully shows the girls all his prized possessions – his guns, dope and endless cash – and seems genuinely amazed himself. He’s a blast to watch, but there’s something deeply tragic about this character who, just like the girls, is desperately clamouring for the thrills promised to him by a world weaned on celebrity and excess. But while rife with provocation, don’t expect any scathing social commentary here. Any moral lifting is left to the audience, and that’s just the way that Korine likes it.

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