Somewhere dir. Sofia Coppola

By Dorian Tocker

Somewhere is a pure high-octane adventure, right from the first frame; it begins with an explosive car chase through the bustling streets of Los Angeles, ending climactically with a 52-car pile-up—right through the façade of a wholesale watermelon warehouse.

Just in case you’re not in on the joke, the bombastic description above couldn’t be further from the quiet, subtle, and sorta heartbreaking portrait of (fictional) famed actor Johnny Marco (Stephen Dorff) and his 11-year old daughter, Cleo (Elle Fanning). Director Sofia Coppola echoes her previous portrait of a lonely actor in a hotel, Lost In Translation, again creating stillness with the film’s static camera (with help from Cinematographer Harris Savides) and use of dramatic understatement.

If motor vehicles spattered with watermelon entrails and big, twisty-turny plot-points sound more like your bag, then this ain’t  the film for you. Personally, I found Coppola’s meditative, anti-romantic point-of-view on Hollywood glitz to be refreshing.

Cool side-note: the film’s score was composed by French indie-rockers Phoenix! Though the band has had many notable placements of their songs in movies and commercials, including  “Too Young” in Coppola’s Lost In Translation, this is their first attempt at scoring a film.

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