Friday, October 13, 2006

Thoughts On: Sofia Coppola

I saw a trailer last night for Marie Antoinette, Sofia Coppola’s new film. Because I’m a girl I was sucked in by all the pink, the finery, the New Order songs, but because I’m also a woman I got a little disgusted. Nothing like revisionist French history filtered through the lens of new wave music, Manolo Blahniks and Sofia champagne. I started thinking about Sofia Coppola’s two previous films, The Virgin Suicides and Lost in Translation, in relation to this new one and the seed for this post was germinated. Something about Sofia Coppola doesn't sit right with me.

I have complicated feelings about Miss Coppola. On one hand, she is a high profile female director in an industry where we desperately need more female directors making accessible films. I also think she garners attention only because there are so few. On the other hand I think hers is one of the weaker female voices in Hollywood, and Lord knows how those weak female voices are most palatable in male-dominated fields. I was pissed off that she was nominated for Best Director for Lost in Translation. Was it a good film? Yes, I think so, but not necessarily for its direction. I think Nicole Holofcener (criminally underrated), Mira Nair and Jane Campion, for example, are much stronger, experienced directors who manage to tell complex stories with both substance and style. I’m always interested in their perspectives. In comparison, Coppola is just....pfffftt....airy, fluffy, a pink meringue, champagne with a straw. She seems stuck in adolescence. Her films are pretty to look at and listen to but I don’t find myself caring about the characters or the plot. Films that appeal to the young and fashionable....not exactly rocking the status quo there. Sofia Coppola reminds me of an ultra-girly, trendy model-type whose eyes glaze over at the mention of Laura Mulvey. I will give her some credit; Coppola does have a gift for matching music to a scene. I'm thinking specifically of Trip Fontaine walking down the hall to Heart's "Magic Man" and Bill Murray singing Roxy Music karaoke.

Will I see Marie Antoinette? I’ll probably rent it just to see Versailles used as a set and for the music but certainly not to see snaggle-toothy Kirstin Dunst dance around her pink mansion. Why is she still getting roles? She’s bugged me since she was a little bratty vampire.

1 comment:

Lori Mocha said...

Lost in Translation is SO BORING. NOTHING HAPPENS AND NOTHING INTERESTING IS SAID EVER. The only reason that movie is any good is because you get to see crazy Tokyo.

Kirstin Dunst is a stick.