The Bling Ring

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Movie Review by EDF

Starring: Emma Watson, Taissa Farmiga, Israel Broussard, Leslie Mann
Director: Sofia Coppola

When does art imitate life or even life imitate art? Would you call a movie based on the true exploits of a thieving group of teenagers as art or the expensive jewellery of the rich and shameless as life? It may be life Jim, but not one most of us will ever get to know. Would the robbery of expensive jewellery during this year’s Cannes film festival be categorised as art or life? I would call it life but it turned into art when a second robbery occurred a few days later at the same festival. This would have been the most ideal time for the publicity team for THE BLING RING to release a statement saying that THE BLING RING were not involved in the robberies.

Marc (Israel Broussard), the new kid at school, who also has a minor conviction to his name, finds it hard to blend in. He quickly becomes the best of friends, ever, with Rebecca (Katie Chang) where they partake in a pastime of smoking weed and stealing flashy cars. When watching an entertainment news piece about a celebrity who is out of town, Rebecca and Marc check the address on the internet and proceed to check the place out. They cannot believe how easy it is to break into the property and Rebecca takes items of clothing and jewellery that the celebrity had been previously seen wearing in public. Uncomfortable that they will be caught, Marc nearly has to drag Rebecca away.

They both brag to their friends about what they have done and soon their numbers increase to include other friends such as typical valley girl Nicki (Emma Watson). The celebrities that are picked out and burgled are the ones the Bling Ring are obsessed with and the items taken are more for image sake than anything else. With the amount of spare cash that they find lying around or even in some cases Rolex watches and dope, the Bling Ring continue their crime spree even when there is a possibility of getting caught.

For a movie that is all about glamorous things that celebrities own, there is nothing glamorous about robbing them considering, in most cases, they had worked hard for their riches. THE BLING RING kids are anything but living in poverty, which if they were, it would be a more credible explanation for their thieving ways. Instead, they are taken in by the bling, expensive clothes and images that exploits them on a daily basis through various media outlets. This is a true story and the characters come across as shallow as they really are. Even Emma Watson comes across as a legitimate annoying valley girl, who has come a very long way since her Harry Potter days. The scenes are well shot but some do drag on a little bit and some of the interview inserts that set up some of the scenes are a little jarring. While watching this, you are left with the conclusion that there is no one you can cheer for. Through the lack of responsibility for their actions, you are left with no sympathy for any of the characters.

4 out of 6 stars