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From Academy Award-winning writer/director Sofia Coppola (Lost in Translation, The Virgin Suicides, Marie Antoinette), comes the critically acclaimed Somewhere.
An intimate story set in contemporary Los Angeles, Somewhere is a witty, moving and empathetic look into the orbit of Hollywood actor Johnny Marco (played by Stephen Dorff).
We join Marco as he stumbles through a life of excess, living out of the legendary Chateau Marmont Hotel; he has a Ferrari to drive around in, and a constant stream of girls and pills to stay in with. Comfortably numbed, Johnny drifts along. Following an unexpected visit from his 11-year-old daughter, Cleo (played wonderfully by Elle Fanning), their encounters encourage Johnny to face up to where he is with life, and confront the question that at some point we all must; which path in life will you take?
Filmed entirely on location, Somewhere reunites Sofia Coppola with her Lost in Translation editor Sarah Flack and production designer Anne Ross. Sofia's brother Roman Coppola takes on the role of producer, whilst her father Francis Ford Coppola is executive producer. The films atmospheric soundtrack is written by Grammy Award winning French band “Phoenix”.
The making of Somewhere
Director Sofia Coppola's career to date exemplifies the adage to "write what you know." For her fourth feature, Francis Ford Coppola's youngest child focuses on a famous man and his daughter. Actor Johnny Marco (a surprisingly poignant Stephen Dorff) stays in Tinseltown's Chateau Marmont while promoting his latest picture. When he isn't attending press junkets, he smokes, sleeps around, and hires blonde twins who pole-dance for his entertainment (they bring their own collapsible poles). At a party, he gets so drunk he falls and breaks his wrist. Into this adult scenario, his ex-wife drops off 11-year-old Cleo (Elle Fanning) for a visit. Despite the state of suspended adolescence in which he drifts, Johnny gets a kick out of this well-behaved kid, who skates like a champ and cooks like a pro. If Cleo doesn't quite worship her delinquent dad, she enjoys his company, but when Johnny finds out her mother needs to "take some time off," he must examine a life in which mind-numbing routine takes precedence over purpose. Somewhere represents Coppola's third film about a famous figure, after Marie Antoinette, and her second about a movie star, after Lost in Translation. Johnny shares Bob's frustration with a system that treats him more like a cog in the machine than a human being. Coppola conveys his frustration best when Johnny gets fitted for an old-age mask--a remarkable sequence in which Dorff looks like a plaster monster devoid of eyes and mouth, just two holes through which to breathe. --Kathleen C. Fennessy
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Top Customer Reviews
The peerless 'Lost in Translation', and 'The Virgin Suicides' are about restraint, one internally and the other externally imposed.
'Somewhere' and 'Marie Antoinette' are about lack of restraint.
They could not, however, be more different.
The protagonist, Johnny, has it all and he has nothing. His recreations are casual sex and his Ferrari. He has freedom and money galore. But there is no focus to his life, that is until he is obliged to care for his pubescent daughter (Cleo). She is his emotional salvation and in her innocence is the antithesis of the other women in his life. She redeems him.
The film moves unhurriedly, sometimes very slowly. It give the viewer time to think. But it never grabbed me. I remained indifferent to Johnny's existence. I didn't care about him; but I did care about Cleo, though not excessively because I knew she would not be corrupted. Hence it almost, but not quite, failed for me.
Yes, I'll watch it again, but not for some time.
Somewhere is the tale of Johnny Marco (Stephen Dorff), who is film star, womaniser, hard living `guy' first and sometime father to his smart, lovely daughter Cleo (Elle `going to be a bigger star than her sister Dakota' Fanning). The film eschews having a traditional story and rather works through three `acts', each of which sees Dorff in a different light.
Somewhere is a very visual film, it may have little dialogue but it still has a brilliant `feel' which viewers will either connect with and love or reject and hate. The father / daughter bonding is the engine that drives the plot - basically we get to tag along as Cleo visits her dad and gets to experience his movie star lifestyle.
Before his daughter's arrival, women are just objects to Marco - expressed in a great double bill of scenes where hot blonde twins pole dance for him in his Chateau Marmont hotel room - and despite their eager efforts he can barely keep himself awake. When Cleo impacts his life he has to do dad duties such as watching her ice-skate and the remarkable juxtaposition of his seeing her as a girl developing into a woman makes him re-assess his whole world view.
Somewhere is a wonderful film and it looks fantastic on Blu-Ray - it made my top 10 films of 2010 and I highly recommend seeking it out!
There are revealing moments of deep sadness. Cleo is not at all keen to experience her father sleeping around - something he can ill conceal from her watchful and over-adult eyes. And in the key scene of the film, she reveals in one brief moment her deep sadness, her insecurity and anxiety. Johnny is sympathetic but has no adequate response: he just packs her off to summer camp. And of course we then see her setting off to summer camp as resilient, well-adapted, flexible... As ever. You could say that Johnny doesn't do anything terribly wrong as a father, he is kind and understanding and non-judgemental with his daughter. But is that enough? No doubt she will get all the movement she needs at the summer camp - but will she not sadly miss the family she doesn't really have?
It is hard not to draw personal parallels between Sophia Coppola and Cleo: after all, Sophia was once the 11-year-old daughter of a huge Hollywood personality. This is a beautifully photographed, beautifully acted, superbly directed film. Understatement all the way. Watch it twice, at least, to see the fine details which tell us so much that is not loudly expressed.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting film. One of Sophia's strongest. Well acted and filmed with a fresh feel. Bears repeated viewing. Good stuff.Published 6 months ago by James Thorold
Fantastic film, great service and great quality. Nothing else to say... Will definitely be buying from this company again!Published 14 months ago by Michaela Woolley
One of those dull films with no beginning no middle and no ending after which people say: "deep..."Published 15 months ago by Nadja Zivkovic
To state the obvious, all films are interpreted by the viewer in their own universe, with their own prejudices and experiences. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Call me Al