The Bling Ring succeeds in portraying the exploits of the real life high school aged vandals who burglarized Hollywood celebrities in 2008. In fact, Sofia Coppola's latest film is too successful and is just as boring and shallow as it's real life counterparts.
The film follows a bunch of spoiled kids from Calabasas, California, who crave the spotlight and jet set lifestyle of their Hollywood/Reality TV idols. These kids embrace all the petty and shallow aspects of modern American life, to the nth degree. In a world where you can become rich and famous for making a sex tape, or land on the cover of fashion magazines after being arrested and having your mugshot plastered all over the news, it almost seems logical to steal from wealthy A-(or sometime D-)listers and become famous yourself. The robberies, the drugs, the partying, the horribly cliched music and posturing, these kids use this things to mask how boring and pathetic they really are inside.
Unfortunately, The Bling Ring is a case of art imitating life. The film captures the vapid and empty lives of it's characters to a T...and this makes for a hell of a boring movie. It's so sterile and repetitive it's almost maddening. They rob and party, and rob and party some more. The characters don't grow or develop as people, because they were barely even people to begin with. The film doesn't glorify their actions but refrains from villianizing them either. Coppola's film takes a fly on the wall approach and is as cold and distant as the young hooligans themselves. Acting wise, the cast does an okay job but again, they're basically playing caricatures so that doesn't really say much. When your film is about unlikeable scumbags, you can either go go buck wild into left field (Spring Breakers, Pain & Gain) or stay true to the source material and risk crafting an unlikeable film as well. Looks like Coppola chose the latter. If it wasn't for Emma Watson and newcomer Katie Chang looking gorgeous onscreen and the ironically bumping soundtrack, I might have officially hated The Bling Ring. Instead I'll summarize the film with something Emma Watson's character would say: "it was NOT chill."