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The Bling Ring Review Critics


Dave White Profile

True Hollywood story... Read full review

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Critics scores range from 0 to 100, with higher scores indicating more favorable reviews.

  • 4.0

    out of 100

    Generally favorable reviews
    based on a weighted average of all
    critic review scores.

  • 40

    out of 100

    Wall Street Journal Joe Morgenstern

    The point of the film is vacuous materialism, but the way these larcenous children return the camera's impassive gaze suggests that no one is home behind their beautiful faces and dead eyes.

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  • 60

    out of 100

    The Hollywood Reporter Todd McCarthy

    Coppola’s attitude toward her subject seems equivocal, uncertain; there is perhaps a smidgen of social commentary, but she seems far too at home in the world she depicts to offer a rewarding critique of it.

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  • 63

    out of 100

    USA Today Claudia Puig

    The Bling Ring is the cinematic equivalent of the vapid, superficial kids it features — all visual panache and minimal substance.

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  • 80

    out of 100

    Variety Scott Foundas

    The Bling Ring traces an intriguing feedback loop of which it is knowingly a part: a movie that affords its subjects the very immortality they so aggressively sought.

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  • 80

    out of 100

    The New Yorker David Denby

    May be the most exquisitely crafted movie ever made about a bunch of nitwits. [10 & 17 June 2013, p. 110]

  • 88

    out of 100

    Chicago Sun-Times Richard Roeper

    The Bling Ring is a sly, often hilarious and at times sobering look at the 21st century fascination with celebrities.

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  • 91

    out of 100

    Entertainment Weekly Owen Gleiberman

    For a while, the girls' personalities seem almost interchangeable, but that's part of the texture. Katie Chang gives the leader a ripe synthetic glow, and Emma Watson does a remarkable job of demonstrating that glassy-eyed insensitivity need not be stupid.

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For Families provided by Common Sense Media

Pause for kids 16 & under

Glitzy but superficial dramedy has swearing, alcohol, drugs.

What Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Bling Ring is based on the real-life escapades of a group of teenage thieves who raided the homes of Hollywood's rich and famous for their high-end clothing, accessories, and more. While Sofia Coppola's drama demonstrates a clear awareness of the sadly aspirational yearnings and self-aggrandizement that fueled the robberies, it emphasizes the glamor in it, too, as it seeks to uncover exactly how and why the so-called Bling Ring came to be. Be prepared for an almost nonstop litany of label-flashing -- the acquisitiveness factor is set to the max, with an almost slavish detail to the name brands of the items that were stolen -- as well as lots of swearing (from the comparatively tame "ass" to "f--k" and more) and plenty of underage drinking and drug use (both weed and cocaine).

  • Families can talk about how the Bling Ring came to be. Can you understand why members of the group wanted to steal from the rich and famous? What drove them? Did they find what they were seeking?
  • What is the movie saying about the allure of fame and the famous? Why did these kids want to be like the stars so much they started stealing their stuff? Does the media glorify fame?
  • Are teenagers really this label-hungry? How do they even hear about what celebrities wear and own? What explains all this consumerism?
  • How does the movie portray underage drinking and drug use? Are there any realistic consequences?

The good stuff
  • message true0

    Messages: If there's anything positive here, it's that old clich that crime doesn't pay. Also: Having the Louboutins that Paris Hilton walks in doesn't make you Paris Hilton.

  • rolemodels true0

    Role models: You'd be hard-pressed to find role models in this movie; the teens are sad, lonely, greedy, angry, yearning, misguided or, depending on the character, all of the above. The adults seem out to lunch at best and delusional at worst. One home-schooling mother bases her "lessons" on the tenets behind the self-help program called The Secret.

What to watch for
  • violence false2

    Violence: Characters yell expletives and scream at each other; a young man finds a gun, which a young woman brandishes around and fires accidentally. A car crash with injuries.

  • sex false3

    Sex: Teen girls are shown scantily clad while changing clothes and making out with guys, some of whom are older than the girls are. Sexual references.

  • language false4

    Language: Frequent use of words including "f--k," "s--t," "d--k," "a--hole," "bitch," "goddamn," "slut," "whore," "ass," "damn," "hell," "oh my God," and more.

  • consumerism false5

    Consumerism: Tons of brands/labels seen and mentioned: Louboutin, Herve Leger, Kitson, Chanel, Dior, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Porsche, Rolex. Also, plenty of name-dropping of celebrities: Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, Orlando Bloom, etc.

  • drugsalcoholtobacco false5

    Drinking, drugs and smoking: Lots of underage drinking (beer and hard liquor), both at homes and in clubs and bars. Also, teens use cocaine and smoke pot, both with and without bongs and paraphernalia. Cigarette smoking.