I’ll be the first to shamelessly admit it: the sole reason I went to the movie theatres to see “The Bling Ring” was because Emma Watson was starring in the film. I really thought it sounded like quite a silly premise for a film, but hey – I love Emma Watson, and I wanted to be sure I saw it before they started moving the film to only late-night showings or took it off the big screens completely.
“The Bling Ring,” for those who aren’t aware, is a 2013 film directed by Sofia Coppola and based on a Vanity Fair article by Nancy Jo Sales. Among others, it starts Katie Chang, Israel Brossard, Claire Julien, Taissa Farmiga and Georgia Rock.
It’s a story that, in my mind, seemed absolutely impossible…. until I discovered that somehow, it was based on true events.
The Bling Ring is a story about a group of well-off teenagers living in California who begin breaking into celebrity homes and stealing things. Lots, and lots, and lots of things. The group is basically led by one teenage girl who worships Lindsay Lohan, but the rest – including one guy – tag along and join in. Eventually, of course, they get caught, and well…. it doesn’t end well.
Ignoring the fact that this is based on real events, here was my thought process going throughout the film:
- Why is Marc going along with this like it’s no big deal? In fact, why are all these people acting like it’s no big deal? Last time I checked, these were pretty major crimes, so….. okay then.
- Are we really supposed to believe that celebrity homes don’t have security systems? Or guards?
- Are we really supposed to believe that celebrities would leave a door unlocked when they’re away?
- This is preposterous.
- Wow, yep, this is ridiculous.
- Can you really find celebrity addresses on the Internet like that, or is that an exaggeration? If you can, well, I guess that opens up a lot of questions about the invasion of privacy.
- Does no one see these kids wearing the stolen goods?
The story itself is a pretty crazy one, but the film is presented in a very raw, real, documentary-style way. Scenes of The Bling Ring plotting & robbing celebrity homes are interspersed with scenes of those same kids talking about the events to a reporter. The characters were rotten, self-absorbed, and completely unaware of anything outside of their realm, particularly Rebecca (Chang’s character), the leader of the pack. We’re barely introduced to any of the characters or the premise of the story before everything happens; instead, we’re thrown right in.
Throughout most of the film, I wanted to smack all of those kids. Did ANYONE stop to think about what they were doing? Marc seems to be the only one questioning it, but he still goes along with everything… something to be said about peer pressure, I suppose. The kids are completely blind to what’s going on around them, until it’s far too late.
Underneath it all, the film speaks about fame, infamy, celebrity obsession, fitting in and standing out.
It’s not a bad film and maybe I’m biased, but Emma Watson certainly stole the show for me. This is her first film that isn’t based on a book, so it’s got a different dimension to it than the others. I’m not sure I’d go out and buy this movie on DVD right when it’s released – maybe I’ll wait a few months until it’s on the clearance rack.
If you’re interested in reading the Vanity Fair article that this film was based on, I found it here.