So, when I picked up the Spring Breakers Blu-Ray on Tuesday, I was elated to find that it was packed with extras. Instead of reviewing Harmony Korine’s masterful film again (you can read my initial review here), this post is dedicated to the special features on the DVD/Blu-Ray. (Note: the special features on the DVD and Blu-Ray versions of Spring Breakers are identical.)
This Spring Breakers Blu-Ray marks a number of firsts for Harmony Korine. It’s the first time any of his films have been released on Blu-Ray, first of his home releases to contain special features, and thereby, his first recorded audio commentary. And his track for Spring Breakers is pretty much exactly what you’d think Harmony Korine’s track for Spring Breakers would sound like. While he unfortunately focuses a little too much on the scene we’re seeing at any given time, the track does open itself up to a plethora of great trivia. Including:
Val Kilmer was supposed to play Selena Gomez’s fire and brimstone youth pastor, but he got sick. So Korine's friend (and pro wrestler), Jeff Jarrett stepped it.
A chief inspiration for Spring Breakers was Korine’s personal collection of fraternity imagery and coed pornography he had gathered over the years.
The looping dialogue in the film is meant to evoke electronica and sample-based music.
James Franco’s character, Alien, was inspired by the “gold teeth, white rapper, gangsters,” Korine used to ride the school bus with, and beach bums.
Also, once Alien arrives on screen, Korine clearly becomes more interested in talking. His voice is excited and heightened. You can tell he loves this character, and loves what Franco did with it.
Highlight: “This is their dream. What could be better? Scooters at midnight. Florida motels. White rappers. Bad beer. Donuts. Milkshakes. Weed. Seeing their reflection. Perfect.”
Three Part Making-Of Featurette (22:01)
“It’s meant to be something unreal. I never really cared about this idea of ‘truth in film’ or ‘vérité is truth’ or some type of ‘ultimate truth.’ That’s boring. I want something more enlightening, more like poetry.”
This is a notion Korine brings up several times in this exquisite Making-Of. How he never intended for Spring Breakers to feel 100 percent real. How through music, cinematography, editing and performance, he wanted the film to be an experience. A trip, if you will.
In addition to Korine’s intentions behind the film, this featurette covers the lengthy pre production process, casting, photography and much more. It’s full of marvelous bits of knowledge for any remote fan of the film.
Highlight: Franco describes how Korine’s pitch for the film sold him. “He said he wanted to make a Britney Spears music video mixed with a Gaspar Noé film.”
Deleted Scene (:58)
Amusing little scene. I won’t give away what it is, but I’m glad it was cut.
The outtakes on this Blu-Ray are the real highlight of the disc. When I hear “outtakes,” I imagine a gag reel of the actors flubbing up there lines. Not here. Instead, these outtakes are mostly a collection of extended scenes and/or unused material from the film. Most of it is confined to Franco’s career-defining “Look at all my shit!” tirade, but all of it is gold.
Highlight: Easy, Korine interrupts Franco’s “Look at all my shit!” speech and gives him a line to say. Watch Franco here. Watch him slightly pop out of character and really pay attention to what his director is saying. He cuts his director off, saying he’s got it, then delivers a great bit about why Alien does what he does. Twice. In one take. And it’s in the final movie. That is fucking acting.
Harmony’s Ear Candy (7:22)
Excellent making-of documentary about the musical inspiration for the film. Music supervisor Randall Poster and the film’s composer, Cliff Martinez, talk about motifs and intentions behind their tunes. A great doc.
Highlight: Martinez made his own version of Skrillex’s “Scary Monster and Nice Sprites” (which opens the film), to be played during the final shootout. I never knew that’s what that track was.
Additional Material: A trio of Vice featurettes that were already online for free, trailers, and TV spots.
Final Thoughts: Honestly, I would’ve been fine with just having Korine’s gorgeous film to look at (and believe me, this Blu-Ray looks gorgeous), but these special features really do make the experience that much better. For fans of Spring Breakers, this DVD/Blu-Ray is an absolute must.