Cannes 2013: Critics give Coppola’s ‘Bling’ mostly golden marks

The last time Sofia Coppola brought a movie to the Cannes Film Festival, in 2006 with “Marie Antoinette,” she might have preferred to stay home: The reviews were harsh, and the film was booed by audiences.

The reaction to her new movie, “The Bling Ring,” has been far more favorable.

The film, which premiered at Cannes on Thursday and arrives in U.S. theaters on June 14, focuses on a group of real-life young people who break into celebrity homes to pinch jewelry, money and rugs.


As Times staff writer Amy Kaufman has reported, the movie’s making has sparked a controversy within the LAPD.

PHOTOS: Cannes Film Festival scene

But the early reception to the Cannes screening has been largely positive.

Peter Bradshaw, reviewing the movie in The Guardian, said, “‘The Bling Ring’ is a very distant, minor cousin to Robert Bresson’s ‘Pickpocket’ or Christopher Nolan‘s ‘Following.’ The final notes of irony and repudiation may be laboured and obvious, but this is an intriguingly intuitive and atmospheric movie”

Robbie Collin, reviewing for The Telegraph, said: “Coppola and her young cast make the gang’s actions creepily plausible: if celebrities are the new gods, these youngsters are storming the Holy of Holies and making off with the curtain. Emma Watson is a stand-out: she delivers her character’s blasé whines of entitlement like a musician coaxing a keening lament from an oboe, and her drained interactions with her dopey mother, played by Leslie Mann, are a joy.”

Reviewing for HitFix, Guy Lodge said, “What’s gratifyingly fresh about the film is Coppola’s refusal to sentimentalize the kids’ crimes as a form of starry-eyed celebrity desire, which would be the easiest and most self-flattering stance for a celebrity filmmaker to take. The girls don’t steal Paris Hilton’s Louboutins to feel like Paris Hilton, whom at least some of them hold in blatant contempt; they steal them because they’re nice shoes, and readily available at that.”

Todd McCarthy in The Hollywood Reporter was less kind: “Shot in a gliding, gently intoxicating style that lightly suggests that this ‘based on actual events’ story could be taking place in a dream (or, more to the point, an altered state), this is a too-cool-for-school portrait of spoiled kids achieving dubious but welcome fame for robbing the homes of young Hollywood celebrities. As such, it will attain a certain stature itself as a cultural artifact but without stirring significant interest artistically or commercially.”


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