“Like Somewhere, The Bling Ring sneaks up on you,” Film Comment‘s Kent Jones has apparently written. (I can’t find the actual link but Sasha Stone has.) In other words, Jones is implying, Sofia Coppola‘s film doesn’t feel like that much at first…but then it gradually starts to. And then it does.
“Somewhere during the first visit to Paris Hilton’s house (if it isn’t the real thing, it could just as well be), you might find yourself, as I did, alternately charmed, mesmerized, and horrified by the lives of the characters and the homes they enter. Halfway through the film, Marc and Rebecca wander through what is supposedly Orlando Bloom’s open-plan house at night, viewed from an exquisite remove several tiers above in the Hollywood hills, the sounds of howling coyotes and wailing police sirens quietly echoing in the distance—a suspended spell of uncanny beauty, and one of the most beautifully lyrical stretches I’ve seen in a movie in ages.
“I’m not sure if Coppola’s film ends as satisfactorily as it might have — resolving a narrative about characters who lead unmotivated lives does present its dramatic problems — but I don’t think it matters all that much. Unlike Spring Breakers, with which the film will inevitably be compared (alongside Schrader’s The Canyons), The Bling Ring goes about its business quietly but with a tremendous purity of focus. The film casts such a lovely spell that its full force may hit only after the lights come up.”