When the casting news about Harmony Korine’s “Spring Breakers” first broke in November of last year, it sent waves through the film industry – the film would take former Disney stars, Vanessa Hudgens and Selena Gomez and pair them with James Franco in a dark comedy that intelligently critiques the American culture of excess, the stage of youthful rebelliousness and the contradictory societal pressures to be “good” and to “be a kid” in a morally ambiguous society. The film is refreshingly original – the plot revolves around four college girls who rob a restaurant to pay for their spring break at the beach. Today, January 17, 2013, we get a taste of this daringly original film for the first time in the film’s first full trailer (accompanying this article).
The trailer does a great job showing that the film is unlike anything audiences have seen in a long time, though it doesn’t make the film feel like a must-see. The extraordinarily versatile and extremely talented James Franco is a corn-rowed, bling-wearing, grill-sporting pimp who recruits the stunning, bikini-clad spring breakers for a potential crime ring. His role will undoubtedly make-or-break the film – if his performance seems even slightly over-the-top, the movie could easily wither away.
However, the film already premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival to stellar reviews, and according to Selena Gomez, the film received a standing ovation – which gives me a lot more hope than the trailer did. Furthermore, Hudgens and Gomez are both immensely talented actresses, and although Gomez hasn’t had much experience in these more mature roles, she’s been consistently impressive over the course of her career, so I have no doubt she will do a great job once again.
One of the film’s main attractions is the opportunity to see the former Disney starlets in sexy, more mature roles. At this point it’s tough to tell how much this will attract audiences. Hudgens has had a number of extremely publicized nude photo scandals, which I can only assume will mean that fewer viewers will be interested in seeing her in a bikini, while Gomez has been unsurprisingly cast in a more morally righteous role. Although Gomez will be prancing around in a bikini like her fellow cast members, audiences shouldn’t be expecting any nudity or excessive sexuality. “Spring Breakers” will deal with a number of adult themes, including violence and sexuality, but audiences shouldn’t expect to see a “Wild Things” performance with the former Disney stars anytime soon.
“Spring Breakers” will hit theaters in March of 2013. Stay tuned for the latest information on “Spring Breakers” and subscribe to the Pittsburgh Film Industry Examiner for all of the latest film news.