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"Spring Breakers": This is What America Gets 

Wednesday, Mar 20 2013

This candy-colored fever dream of id-driven nihilism? You brought this on yourselves, America. Or so Harmony Korine's Spring Breakers seems to say, with something like the old-fashioned pseudo-satirical wink of Oliver Stone's Natural Born Killers. This is better, though, more specific, and possibly an essay on just how deeply Disney warps its kids (and by extension, ours). Pity those who've matriculated from High School Musical: Last year Zac Efron got himself pissed on by a boffo Nicole Kidman in The Paperboy, and now here's Vanessa Hudgens in bed with corn-rowed wigga-Gatsby James Franco — the same man who's also currently the wizard of Disney's Oz — forcing him to fellate his own guns. (Whereupon he says he's in love.) At least fellow Disney kid Selena Gomez's character has bailed by now, neither digging this scene nor appreciating that her gal-pals used armed robbery to subsidize their Floridian tits-and-beer-bongs adventure. Credit Korine for spotting some obsessive pathology at play not just in America's manufactured youth culture but also in our trash-movie love (his last film was, after all, Trash Humpers); whatever exploitation occurs in Spring Breakers also is a sort of audit, and his instinct to decorate Franco's customary shit-eating grin with a gleaming grill seems like both a prank and a lucid insight. Cinematographer Benoît Debie dapples the proceedings with the same DayGlo doom he brought to Enter the Void. Music by Cliff Martinez and Skrillex lends the queasy rapture of a gone-wrong EDM trance. Editor Douglas Crise imparts an eerily loopy structure. In sum, it's Girls Gone Wild as a neon Bosch painting.

About The Author

Jonathan Kiefer

SF Weekly movie critic Jonathan Kiefer is on Twitter: @kieferama and of course @sfweeklyfilm.


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