Thursday, July 10, 2014

Coppola’s ‘Bling Ring’ has zero zing

June 20. 2013 8:10PM


What: “The Bling Ring” (Zero stars)

Starring: Katie Chang, Israel Broussard, Emma Watson, Leslie Mann

Directed by: Sofia Coppola

Running time: 90 minutes

Rated: R for drug use, language, sexual content

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Shame on Sofia Coppola.

Her father, Francis Ford Coppola, has done so much to associate the family name with fine filmmaking, and she nearly wiped it out with one movie, “The Bling Ring.” It’s almost impossible to believe the director who gave us the masterful “Lost in Translation” is responsible for what only laughingly passes as a feature film. “The Bling Ring” is as shallow and pretentious as the victims of the crimes depicted.

This is the 2008 story of how teens living in and around Calabasas, Calif., broke into the homes of celebrities such as Paris Hilton, Audrina Patridge, Lindsay Lohan and Megan Fox to go “shopping.” Their targets were high-end fashion, jewelry, money and any other bling they could find. The teens spent nearly a year on their crime spree before their bragging resulted in arrests and convictions.

Everything about this movie rings fake and false.

Coppola builds the movie backwards, showing us the work of these criminals before giving us a glimpse into the psychology of what would make them act this way. The interesting part is not how they committed the crimes but why. Instead of spending more than a few seconds showing how bad these teens had it (probably because it wasn’t that bad), Coppola wastes time with long passages where we watch them sing, try on clothes and shout out the names of designers.

“The Bling Ring” shows how the robbers merely walked up to the front of a celebrity home — whose address was found on the Internet — and went in through an unlocked door. In this age of stalkers, it seems like a fairy-tale world where every house and car is left unlocked and loaded with riches.

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