what would become of Harmony Korine’s hallucinatory cult today

Presented at the Venice Film Festival in 2012 and immediately afterward at the Toronto International Film Festival. spring Breakers immediately attracts a seemingly unstoppable wave of controversy, resentment and controversy, which grows more and more, reaching a climax at the time of release in cinemas around the world, allowing more than skillfully to exploit the reputation of a tabloid film, turning into a short-term instant cult.

spring Breakers everyone is hearing. There are those who extol it – most of the international critics – and those who, instead, emphasizing the gratuitous provocation carried out between the explicit content and the raw and hallucinated representation of youthful reality that is not at all true, shout scandal, not too subtly suggesting boycott the film, hindering its success but unable to do so.

In this sense, the distance, never so obvious and political, between the critical stance supported by similar publications such as The Guardian and RogerEbert.com, in relation to The Hollywood Reporter, Variety, but above all to Time, which rejects Korine’s film throughout the world. board, even calling it a trashy movie.

Richard Roeper of RogerEbert.com reflects on the parallels between spring Breakers AND natural born killers Oliver Stone widely praising Harmony Korine’s film for owing so much to this pre-existing psychedelic and violent imaginary yet being able to be innovative, hybrid and committed to all intents and purposes in terms of social and political condemnation.

Just think of the aesthetic and language of the rough, raw, kitsch, and sometimes camp music video – to be clear from the MTV repertoire – that Korine resorts to throughout the film, knowing this reality more than well. , taking care of the video footage of artists such as: Daniel Johnston, Sonic Youth, Will Oldham, Cat Power and Die Antwoord, therefore exploiting it to the fullest and boldly rejecting it, given the almost complete absence of the prohibitions typical of Corin’s cinema. .

Whether you like it or not spring Breakers this is a real movie case

Spring Break - Cinematographe.it

That’s why it’s even interesting to revisit Richard Corliss’s historical critique of Time, who, while labeling the film as “pop-art trash,” doesn’t allow it to be seen at festivals in Venice and Toronto alongside the titles of the real authors. masters like Terrence Malick and Paul Thomas Anderson, as if their coexistence in the same competition was nothing short of an insult.

Causes? For Corliss, Korine’s film is superficial, delusional and too provocative. A free exhibition of the female body, which means sexuality and drugs. A position that in many ways refers to the moralism of modernity, between the inexplicable ability to detect the objectification of the female body everywhere – by expelling the witch, which often and voluntarily does not exist – and the naive and childish desire to hide the head. under the pillow, so as not to observe what is lust and the free use of one’s body and desire.

Two extremely clear voices from Roper and Corliss. On the one hand, the desire to think deeply about the psychedelic, desperate and documentary cinema that Harmony Korine brings to life with spring Breakers. On the other hand, the rejection of any form of author’s research that does not coincide with the generally accepted one.

The audience of those and these years has no choice but to once again plunge into the whirlpool of toxic madness and hallucinatory fun presented by spring Breakersdiscovering further merits or demerits, but inevitably coming out alarmed and surprised from vision to vision.
Starting from the forerunner of time in relation to many languages ​​and codes subsequently recognized as sensational and truly mature and realistic – see. Euphoria Sam Levinson, which will soon be reached.

Spring Breakbitch – Girl Riot on Disney Channel

Even before the descending for some and ascending for others parable of Bella Thorne, another former young Disney star – At full speed – increasingly struggling with a bold desire to experiment with different languages ​​​​besides cinema, including porn, four performers: Vanessa Hudgens, Selena Gomez, Ashley Benson and Rachel Korine scandalize the audience, showing a different face of their being-performers, except for the innocent and pure guaranteed by Nickelodeon/Disney productions in which they take part in different programs and periods at a young age.

And it was playing four bad girls spring Breakers that this new face takes shape from the very first shots of the film, intensely orgiastic in its sassy display of a very long series of nude volleyball matches, sexual simulations, colossal hangovers, as well as real relationships in the sunshine, and again in front of a blatantly excited crowd that not only observes, but also devours with his eyes the same bodies, wanting to touch them and use them, despite the violent exhibitionistic nature of everything that happens. Indeed, the main thing is exhibitionism.

The Disney Channel girls are rebelling, and Harmony Korine is giving them the best opportunity to do so. the immediate cleansing of explicit sexuality, which is central to the film and never gratuitous, rather, a real psychological weapon capable of manipulating much more perverted, dangerous and toxic male minds, such as that of a human trafficker and drug dealer Alien.
So it’s not surprising that Vanessa Hudgens intends to draw a huge penis with the words “Spring Breakbitch” written on it after faking oral sex on it. Or, again, Ashley Benson points the muzzle of a fake gun into her mouth and pours a large amount of vodka right down her throat. As well as the constant abuse of drugs applied to their naked bodies, or simulations of sexual – and homosexual – relationships in threes or fours in the company of the best James Franco seen to date.

spring Breakers goes to the endnever sparing the viewer, almost never able to enjoy the visible, just as mercilessly gloomy, dirty, miserable, cruel and rebellious.
A rebellion that represents sexual emancipation and, more generally, identity that finds a liberating and somewhat orgasmic outlet in letting go without any brakes on the creative, pop hallucinatory, sweet and delusional mind of Harmony Korine, who, by signing spring Breakers he becomes the author of the most clear, desperate and realistic film about the problems of youth and the collapse of the American dream.

Faith returns home – the need to escape, the desire to return.

Spring Break - Cinematographe.it

To avoid doubt that spring Breakers it’s not just about drugs and sexuality, this becomes clear as soon as Faith, played by Selena Gomez, is shown to Korine in a series of close-ups in which she is still sidelined, immediately conveying the anxiety and doom that it soon coincides with the need to escape and find one’s own place in the world, despite the realization of pain and the fact that this place in the world does not exist at all, or at least very unlikely to exist, being then frankly unresolved.

“I’m tired of seeing the same thing every day. They are all depressed because they always see the same thing. They wake up in the same bed they always do, in the same houses, and always see the same dull street lights. Just one service station, a lawn, not even green, but brown. Everything is always the same, everyone is sad. I don’t want to end up like them, I want to get out of here. It’s so much more than spring break, it’s a chance to see something different.”

Fresh from an important collaboration with Larry Clarke, maker of films still considered taboo and anomalous, such as Children or Ken ParkHarmony Korine knows only too well the deep meaning of the generational malaise that these toxic young people are experiencing, lost but dreamers she talks about. spring BreakersSo much so that much of his film focuses on the need for escape and the youthful state of doom, which is geographical, but above all identity and existential.

Death experienced primarily by the character of Vera, the one who, more than anyone else, observes, peers, judges and understands, and then leaves, lowering her head and voice, keeping silence and letting off steam in tears.

And yet, as they engage in a spiral of violence, the film’s four young women lose their weakness and sense of abandonment, soon finding their doom, moving around in hoods as if they were vampires, moving from brazen display of their bodies to defense. them, committing armed robberies like a trifle, perfectly protected by the mantra “Let’s pretend we’re in a movie or a bloody video game”so that everything, or almost everything, goes well.
And only with the arrest, the dream ends, and Faith returns home, thinking about the need to escape and the desire to return that follows from this.

I wanted to be a motherfucker – The real American dream Spring break forever

If the humanity shown spring Breakers until the second half of the film, it coincides with a squalid undergrowth of semi-noble criminals, drug addicts, artists, drug dealers, outcasts of all kinds, aspiring gangsters, pimps and prostitutes, and only with the arrival on the scene of the Alien, played by James Franco, Harmony Korine embodies the most daring , the relentless, insane, and obsessive critique of the American Dream offered by the entire film.

The alien states that he is different, he says that he came from another world, that he never wanted to pursue a career as a doctor or a champion like many others of his age, but that he always wanted to be a bastard, pursuing the ideal of success, crime and the American’s dream came true through the exhibition of a bedroom full of weapons – a real armory from the end of the world – money and women at his service.

However, presented as a perfectly strong, dangerous and formidable male character, therefore convinced of manipulation, the Alien becomes manipulated and manipulated, in a most likely sadistic but decisive sequence of the entire film that overturns this logic of use within a few moments. and violence against the female body, illusory as a simple object of desire, but in fact a volatile weapon, much more aware than the male characters of the consequences of all the violence, chaos, desperation and logic of survival that led them to this. there.

Two moments: the submission of the Alien, forced to perform a blowjob on the barrel of two pistols, forcibly inserted into his mouth by Candy and Kitty (Rachel Korine), and a desperate return, already in itself a symbol of the collapse of the American dream, and then about his fate, about an unforgettable Every time Britney Spears, the one who is defined in James Franco’s “Alien” as: “A fallen angel to earth, if he ever fell”.

spring Breakers it’s not an angelic movie, but somehow it is.
Its protagonists may actually be angelic figures, albeit cursed, seeking to lose their innocence, but traumatized by the consequences of doing the same and accepting death.
A film that could hardly be conceived and made today, and which, fortunately, is the son of another Hollywood and another era, during which sex and the body were not yet subjected to the social, political, moralistic and conservative dictates of “Today”.

Available for streaming on the MyMovies ONE platform. spring Breakers waiting for you from August 15th.

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