Palo Alto (2013)

(Spoiler free)
I was really looking forward to watch 'Palo Alto', Gia Coppola's directing debut based on a book of short stories by James Franco (not too keen on this last thing, though).

The trailer, as it was everything that i had seen from the movie, showed a very similar style to her aunt Sofia Coppola, beautiful shots, girls hanging their heads through a car's open window, all very Sofia-esque. Which i adore, but that didn't say much about Gia Coppola as a director. But let me tell you that, even though she has inherited lots of similar things from her, Gia Coppola is definitely something else.

It's easy to compare them, the film it's beautifully shot, the use of music is on point and the style is somehow alike but that's pretty much it. Whereas Sofia creates a more dreamy, gloomy world, Gia is more accurate in depicting reality. Not that Sofia doesn't make it, she embellishes it and i adore that, but Gia goes straight to the core of things.

Gia Coppola gets into the world of accommodated highschool students and really achieves to create that environment, the intimacy they have on their bedrooms, the boredom they experience, the absurdity of their actions like getting arrested just because you've seen the girl you like kiss someone else. It's like a secret camera into the world of these group of young people and she really achieves that. It really reminded me to The Teenage Gaze by Petra Collins, it has that whole mood and both really achieve what it is to be a teenager.

On the other hand, the story is just fine, somehow it leaves you expecting that something is going to happen but just as life itself, and especially in that age, everything is boring and not much happens aside from small victories by oneself; like finally admitting you have a crush on someone or leaving friends behind. Some have compared Gia's work with Larry Clark's 'Kids' or to Gus Van Sant, i wouldn't go that far, but she's definitely creating her own signature style and being a Coppola that's not easy.

About the cast, Emma Roberts proves again that no matter the haters, she really can give solid performances, Jack Kilmer is really a surprise and i totally liked Zoe Levin, who could be a true Sofia Coppola girl and reminded me to 'The Virgin Suicides', i think i liked her character the best.

Many will find the movie boring and with no substance, but i definitely liked it though maybe, just maybe, i expected a little bit more from the ending. But if you're a Sofia Coppola lover or are into small stories with a lot behind, you have to definitely watch it.

Also, the soundtrack is really good and i can't stop listening to this version of Blood Orange's 'Champagne Coast', i'm playing it non stop so enjoy the song, see some beautiful stills from the movie that i adored behind the cut, and give Gia Coppola a try because she's not the new Sofia, she's another talented Coppola in the making:

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