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Overall Rating
3.65

Awesome: 29.49%
Worth A Look35.9%
Just Average: 14.74%
Pretty Crappy: 9.62%
Sucks: 10.26%

12 reviews, 84 user ratings


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Virgin Suicides, The
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by Dust For Eyes

"Deeper than death"
4 stars

Sofia Coppola was the woman who most fingers were pointed at when looking for someone to blame for The Godfather III. It seems that they were a little harsh in their criticisms. It turns outs that she has plenty of her father’s talent and has directed one of the most ethereal and intangible films for years.

Copolla has taken Jeffrey Eugenides’ novel on the suicide of five sisters and runs with its romantic and reminiscent tone surrounding the tragedy.

The reminiscence of a time long past usually leads to a glossing over of the tragedies and a romantic emphasis on the high points. How do you gloss over youth suicide though? That drastic and, "deeper than death decision" by young people with whole lives in front of them is such an awful tragedy that the topic is only reluctantly discussed. Why does it happen? Who is to blame? These are questions that are not easily answered. The reminiscing of boys of the suicide of five girls that they loved is dealt with in The Virgin Suicides.

The Lisbon sisters: Cecelia (Hall), Lux (Dunst), Bonnie (Swain), Mary (Cook) and Therese (Hayman) were the object of fascination and wonder for the local 1970s community - especially the boys. They could not comprehend how such beautiful daughters could be the product of the marriage of the rather stuffy Mr. Lisbon (Woods) - a local high school math’s teacher - and the rather mother-superior-esque Mrs. Lisbon (Turner). Thanks to a world conscious Cecelia and a sequence of events, a tragedy is set to happen.

This film is not about knowing the girls and their motives - That is meant to be a mystery. It’s about the boys and in turn the community’s fascination and reaction to them. We never hear the conversations between the girls and finding out what they are thinking. All we learn about them is from evidence that the boys can gather up. That’s because the film is more about the reaction to the girls rather than learning about them.

The Lisbon family’s destroyed innocence marked the demise of the community that loved them. The girls are a symbol of society’s lost beauty and purity of heart that was replaced by tragedy, anger, confusion and on-the-spot-reporting-live-on-the-scene. Eugenides and Coppola have marked this time as somewhere in the 1970s. A time that they may feel the suburban utopia ideal also started to collapse - a time when the back door could no longer be left unlocked.

Coppola has done a great job with recreating the idyllic 70s suburbia. She has had experience in photography and it shows with intricately and elegantly crafted cinematography showing all the pretty little girly things that teenage girls have to fill their rooms and lives.

This hauntingly beautiful film has some stand out performances from Woods and Turner - Both in roles that are slightly different paces than we’ve come to be used to. The girls are just dreamy - as they’re mean to be - especially Cecilia and Lux (who Coppola obviously takes a liking to). They stand out because of their stronger written characters which Hall and Dunst portray with poignancy. The other three sisters do get a bit left out.

The music for the film - a collection of releases at the time and a score by French duo Air - captures the spirit of the time. The sequence where the girls communicate with their admiring boys is quite heart pilfering.

The Virgin Suicides leaves you taking large deep breaths and holding back welling tears. The film just asks the questions with no attempt to answer them. That is your job as your contemplate the girls’ and society’s lost innocence. The rousing of emotions is nearly overwhelming. Coppola’s beautiful film is a wonderful debut effort.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=3859&reviewer=166
originally posted: 07/03/00 04:12:26
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User Comments

10/10/17 Louise Superbly made and nicely understated, although a serious theme. 4 stars
9/13/17 morris campbell bleak but worth a look 3 stars
9/02/15 Brando James Woods as the father is the only compelling act in this movie. 2 stars
5/18/13 PAUL SHORTT COMPELLING, INTENSE DRAMA WITH SOME GOOD PERFORMANCES 3 stars
8/20/11 Rachel undeveloped characters and story. Ridiculous and crude. Not at all like the 70's I lived 1 stars
8/15/11 chris Poetic and kind of empty in some ways though why it got a R-rating is beyond me. 4 stars
3/20/11 Lab Rat Well, I think every woman having kids MUST see this, to know how NOT to raise them. 5 stars
7/16/10 brian Can Ribisi fail even when he's not on screen? No, he cannot. 4 stars
10/23/09 Jeff Wilder Visually poetic. 4 stars
8/27/09 Girl A really good movie 4 stars
5/18/09 Anonymous. anyone who liked this movie should read the book, it's even better. 4 stars
5/15/09 Matt absolutely horrid and detestable in every way. made me want to hang myself 1 stars
7/31/07 ravenmad this is a luv it/hate it pic: I loved it! 5 stars
5/13/07 fools♫gold What would later lead to greats like Lost in Translation and Marie Antoinette. 7/10 4 stars
2/21/07 Beau wonderfully made film from 'coppola' and 'dunst and turner' are magnificent, very compellin 5 stars
12/05/06 criticalthinker It is critical to read the book before watching the film. 4 stars
11/27/06 William Goss Intimate, immediate, and haunting. 5 stars
9/22/06 David Pollastrini Sofia coppola directs much better than she acts 5 stars
3/03/06 omar one of the best movies ever. depressing but a good movie altogether 5 stars
8/17/05 ES blah, blah, blah, blah, blah =not worth the time or money 1 stars
4/26/05 movielover this movie is one of the best movies ever! 5 stars
4/24/05 sweetgrrl1972 Boring 1 stars
3/24/05 john h. wallace very depressiing yet lures you into wanting more 5 stars
1/27/05 gtsilver makes you wonder what your daughters are thinking 4 stars
1/15/05 Jeff Anderson A dreamy, perfectly acted, and totally accurate depiction of the 70's. SOFIA COPPOLA ROCKS! 5 stars
12/06/04 Felicia Matthews I really like this movie. It was well directed and had very talented actors 5 stars
7/25/04 Movieguy A great film 5 stars
7/21/04 dropdead beautiful movie, very endearing. 5 stars
6/16/04 Jeanne Beautifully shot, nice mood, but ultimately, no real point 3 stars
5/29/04 R.W. Welch Good cinematography but enigmatic and a bit draggy. 3 stars
3/27/04 lvlisty69 it was good to me is it true? 4 stars
1/29/04 Elena Amazing use of music; great acting; but story has holes in it... doesn't make sense 3 stars
1/26/04 Chloe Brody The title was decieving...the virgin suicides...hmmm 4 stars
1/09/04 your worst goddamn nightmare artsy, humorous, intelligent film... the narration reminded me of Goodfellas, hehe 5 stars
10/28/03 WestcoastPunk wow is all i hvae to say 5 stars
9/08/03 sneaker it's not enough to show sad pretty girls in "danger looming" atmosphere. Cheap. 3 stars
9/04/03 Darlene Groetz The movie in which Kirsten Dunst became a zombie of the tragic wands. 1 stars
4/28/03 Buko This movie has a magical feeling, and Kirsten is just wonderful 5 stars
4/19/03 Dillon Considering its the directors debut, pretty damn good. Great music, great Dunst & Josh too 4 stars
3/24/03 Jack Sommersby Curiously unmoving. 2 stars
3/12/03 kelley jewell its alright 3 stars
2/05/03 Kirsten Dunst fan in mourning I'd rather be sodomized by a gang of porcupines than have to play "Lux"!. 1 stars
1/14/03 dammitall this is the worst. only visuals worth it. 1 stars
11/27/02 Zack W. Young Beautiful and truly disturbing. 5 stars
8/30/02 Natalie Stonecipher Poor Kirsten Dunst - Is she wasted herein? Drawn and quartered is more like it. 1 stars
8/28/02 I Can't Swim Excellent in practically every way. A bit more insight into Mom & Dad would have been nice 4 stars
8/26/02 Phoenix I'm in love with Kirsten Dunst. 5 stars
6/22/02 Frances I love twisted films like this 5 stars
6/01/02 I'm in (L) with a Jedi I absolutely loved this film, very depressing, yet very entertaining 5 stars
5/15/02 Darlene Groetz The movie where Kirsten Dunst became a zombie of the tragic wands. 1 stars
4/28/02 Demure33 It has all the flavor of the 70s from a girl's perspective 4 stars
3/31/02 Elizaveta amazingly real 5 stars
3/06/02 Kirsten Dunst fan in mourning I'd rather be sodomized by a gang of porcupines than have to play "Lux". 1 stars
3/01/02 Nomargin Fantastically clautorphobic!! Ms. Coppola has a bright future ahead of her. 5 stars
2/02/02 Natalie Stonecipher Poor Kirsten Dunst - Is she wasted herein? Drawn and quartered is more like it. 1 stars
1/13/02 Tomper Lux was a virgin??? Barely stuck it out to the end. 3 stars
12/02/01 Kate Dull, missing lots o'details, unrealistic, under-dvlpd chrctrs, boring plot. Don't bother. 1 stars
11/30/01 Jeff Wilson Nice "collective" narration idea. Dunst before she made teen crap. nice movie, nice book 4 stars
9/16/01 Bri Yuck, avoid this garbage. 1 stars
9/07/01 country had to watch it for a college english course... i liked it, and the book is worth reading 4 stars
8/18/01 Dakamus "Sucks All Ass" is nowhere near the level of shittiness for this festering bag of poop. 1 stars
5/28/01 Basil I think it w 5 stars
4/01/01 Clarance FanFuckinTastic cinematography combined with a unique and thought provoking plot 4 stars
3/21/01 lickthestar Not as good as the book but few movies are I suppose. Still an excellent film. 5 stars
3/07/01 Mart Dawg GAyest, most boring movie i've seen in a while, IT WOULDNT FUCKING END!!!!!!!!!!!!! 1 stars
2/23/01 Marie completely unbeliavable. Huge plot holes. 3 stars
1/28/01 xy this movie was so awesome. i reccommend u watch it!!! 5 stars
1/06/01 kyle great soundtrack + lovely um, girls? woods very good 4 stars
12/16/00 perverted pixie Shades of "To Die For". Ethereal and enigmatic- who exactly was the narrator? 4 stars
10/17/00 elizabeth dreamy, ethereal, gooey like the lip gloss on kirsten dunst's lips 4 stars
10/05/00 JL Sofia's a lucky bitch. But also a fucking genious. I want a new daddy. Two thumbs way up!!! 5 stars
8/29/00 Viking Not a bad effort 4 stars
8/15/00 MIKE I AM IN SUCH LOVE WITH JOSH HARTNETT! WHAT A HOT GUY!!!!!! 5 stars
8/12/00 Belinda Yawn. 2 stars
6/25/00 skye chapman boring. trite. empty. simpleminded. obvious. stupid. annoying. is it only me? 1 stars
6/11/00 Lisa Odd movie, but kept my interest. Not enough info regarding the reasons for the suicides. 4 stars
5/29/00 Zatoichi Jones Dead sexy and dead creepy. 4 stars
5/19/00 Louis An OK movie. Kirsten Dunst is HOT! 3 stars
5/18/00 syd Coppola has a good eye for set design & costume design, but writing/directing needs work 3 stars
5/09/00 Stefano maybe failing in deeply exploring the teens' world, but it's poetic and touching 4 stars
5/07/00 PJ Great movie, great soundtrack, great acting, original, beautiful, just great 5 stars
4/27/00 Robert I Cruickshank The auto-comment says it all: worth a look. I liked the movie, despite its numerous holes. 4 stars
4/17/00 violetta Incredibly brilliant, touching, never conventional. 5 stars
4/17/00 Mairi Thomas Brilliantly evocative of 70's chilhood and barmy parents. Dreamy ultra-cool soundtrack. 4 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  21-Apr-2000 (R)

UK
  N/A (15)

Australia
  10-Aug-2000 (MA)




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