The Virgin Suicides movie review - Aussieboyreviews
IS THE VIRGIN SUICIDES AN INTENSE DRAMA ON TEENAGE SUICIDE?
The story focuses on a group of boys who become obsessed with the five Lisbon sisters. The Virgin Suicides is very slow-paced, but is also tragic, mysterious, deep and incredibly haunting, based on the novel.
In the mid 1970s on a suburban street, four male teenage friends become obsessed with the Lisbon sisters, five sisters who are isolated by their strict, religious parents after the youngest of the girls commits suicide.
Director: Sofia Coppola
Cast: Kirsten Dunst, A.J. Cook, Hanna Hall, Leslie Hayman, Chelse Swain, Josh Hartnett, Lee Kagan, Jonathan Tucker, FourTee, Anthony DeSimone
Writer: Sofia Coppola
Release Date (Australia): 10 August 2000
Runtime: 97 minutes/1h 37m
Genre: Drama, Romance, Mystery
CONTENT GUIDE (warning: May contain spoilers)
The film contains strong adolescent and suicide themes.
The film contains scenes of suicide violence, including depictions of the impaled corpse of a girl and blood detail surrounding a bathtub after a girl implicitly cuts her wrists.
The film contains infrequent coarse language, including singular uses of the words “bitch”, “ass” and “s**t”.
Teenagers are depicted smoking marijuana joints.
The film contains verbal references to sex, as well as several scenes of passionate kissing and implied sexual activity.
R (for strong thematic elements involving teens)
Aussie boy's thoughts
Building its story and events very slowly, you’ll be forgiven to find yourself wriggling in your seat for a large portion of the film. However, viewers will be able to dismiss this small scratch when they come to the incredibly mysterious finale that will haunt them longer than most teen movies do. Now implied to be adults, four male friends look back at when they were not fully-built human beings as teenagers, and how they were obsessed with the five beautiful Lisbon sisters who were completely forgotten about after they, obviously due to the title and story, committed suicide.
Sofia Coppola does an exceptional job at capturing the novel and executing its complex story into a motion picture meant to remain as a mystery forever, where us as the audience can try to speculate and brainstorm some interesting theories. Just take a look at the main poster for this film, where you’ll see a dreamy, faint and beautiful image of one of the Lisbon sisters. That is exactly how they’re portrayed in the film, and you never really get to take a look at the depth of their struggles, because the film’s leads are the boys who were obsessed with them and saw them as pretty, sexual creatures. They don’t understand that there’s so much more to the girls than what hits the eyes.
But The Virgin Suicides isn’t a film to watch when you’re tired or feeling like a light-hearted teen drama, not automatically because the content is so explicit and dark in tone, but the suicide themes and the finale will haunt you for the rest of your days. It eventually comes to an end after the very slow and often not captivating enough, but without dropping full-on spoilers, it’s an extremely unsatisfying mystery with no answers by the end, leaving us to endlessly speculate without ever expecting any real answer. The performances from the young actors, direction, writing and music are all solid here, but the lack of an extra 30 minutes doesn’t stop it from being slow-going.
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