When I found out last March that Sofia Coppola was making a movie about the Bling Ring, at first I was shocked, and then I became optimistic after I heard what her intentions for the film were. I can only hope that this movie does not just tell the story of Los Angeles teens robbing the homes of celebrities, because that, I don’t believe, would have much impact on people, as the real cultural obsession with what the Bling Ring would. In my opinion, as a society, we are so focused on which celebrity is doing what, and we have gotten distracted. It has led to teens literally killing themselves, and to a complete erosion of privacy and boundaries. If you look back a couple of decades ago, and all the way back to the beginning of time, spirituality and religion were the central focus of every home. The work like, family life, finances etc. were focused around a culture’s spiritual beliefs. I don’t know exactly where we started to go wrong. I believe it has something to do with technology advancing so quickly, in the last few decades especially, fracturing relationships, because of the one-way nature of traditional forms of media. Maybe this is changing now with the more interactive forms of communication. We will see!
The obsession with celebrity — which so many of us suffer from — is what makes the Bling Ring so relevant almost 5 years after the initial robbery took place. I believe that a large majority of our society is just as sick as us teens were. We are all obsessed, I believe, because we want an inside look into the real life of these celebrities, and we enjoy publicly scrutinizing people because they “sin” differently then we do. This obsession is a way of distracting ourselves from having to look at our own actions and sick behavioral patterns.
No one knows the real story behind the Bling Ring. All of the media outlets have gotten key facts in this case wrong, from names of defendants, who is involved in what robbery, who the leader of this crew was, and many more facts that we will never know because no one went to trial. Key pieces of evidence were never submitted, and the majority of the defendants walked with 3 years or so of probation, and refused to have anything to do with the media. Not to mention, the lead detective is currently under investigation for his conduct in this case.
I am still hoping that this movie will accurately show what I have described above, and I have faith in Sofia’s ability to tell this story.