There was a great comment on the late, great Velvet Rope when Sofia Coppola won Best Original Screenplay for Lost In Translation at the Oscars: "That crashing sound you heard was a thousand laptops being hurled across living rooms in LA." Zing! I liked LiT, but have somehow managed to miss everything else she's made while my girlfriend is a fan. (I want to see Marie Antoinette.)
Recounting the real-life exploits of a pack of spoiled, entitled, amoral, LA rich kids who decided to break in and loot the homes of celebrities like Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohan, The Bling Ring seems to want to make a statement about lost youth but much like Spring Breakers it is all surface with little substance. Are we supposed to support the kids antics because they're robbing the 1% of their 1% in a case of high-rent class warfare or ponder what would make kids who want for nothing go and take stuff, not that they exhibit any personal depths; or is that another joke?
Being a silver spoon princess herself would seem to put Coppola at a disadvantage as far as being objective about telling the story about her latter-day society doppelgangers, but in actuality I think there's a generation gap causing the disconnect, namely Coppola is old enough to be her subject's mother and she can't really express what may've been driving these pampered dolts.
Taissa Farmiga, the much-younger sister of Vera Farmiga (by 21 years), is technically the lead character but all the attention gravitates to Emma Watson has she continues to put her Hogwarts years in the rear view as she did previously in The Perks of Being A Wallflower. While her SoCal accent seemed a little ropey, she manages to pull off the deeply shallow aspect of her twerpy character. I suspect I probably would've gotten more insight from the magazine article which was the primary source for the story and provides the narrative conceit.
Score: 5/10. Catch it on cable.
The teaser trailer is brilliant with the sharp cutdown of Sleigh Bells' "Crown On The Ground" and its "Whoa! Hermione has all growed up!" shot of Watson gyrating in seductive slow-motion as captured in the poster frame.