"A little sun can bring out your dark side."
And that's nothing we don't know. But it's also the tag line of Harmony Korine's upcoming teen-flick-gone-mad Spring Breakers. You know, the one starring a gangster James Franco and a barely dressed Selena Gomez, hitting theaters Friday, March 22.
Korine, who also wrote and directed amazing mind-fucks like Kids, Gummo, and Trash Humpers, assured us that this is no standard college story. It's much more sinister and disconcerting. He also assured us that he's been on molly, like, constantly while making this thing, for research.
So when it came to doing the soundtrack, he needed someone who knew a thing or two about this generation and its drug-destroyed brains. So he got Skrillex. Duh.
The 17-song soundtrack, streaming on Pitchfork, is as broad as any modern 20-something college girl's iPod. It goes from dance and dubstep to mood music and trap. The latter is kind of important to the story, because trap music was a big influence on the film, as well as some of Korine's characters.
"Once these girls meet the alien character and are introduced to this whole other crime world, the world of the trap and the gangs and the drugs and the money and the sex," he says, "it's kind of about how all the things coalesce and become this almost spiritual experience for them."
Right now, the whole trap music scene and street-code mentality is really popular with kids in this country. Things like MTV make it all seem really safe and disarmed. Drugs are something that make people millionaires, but we don't seem to focus too much on what that kind of lifestyle does to you as a person.
"It's just like trap music or a lot of pop music now: On the surface, it's very slick and kind of airless," Korine explains. "It's poppy and catchy and vibrant. But at the same time, subject-wise, it's all about murder and drugs and kind of like gangsterism of religion. I wanted this film to work in that same way. It's almost like the intersection of gangsterism and mysticism. It's like all filtered through this kind of aesthetic, through this idea."
For the collection, James Franco goes in on some trap beats as "Dangeruss," his drug-slinging Spring Breakers alter ego. Fellow star Gucci Mane also appears on the tracklist. (But unfortunately, no, Korine didn't lick the rapper's ice-cream cone tattoo on set.) Meanwhile, Waka Flocka Flame, Meek Mill, Rick Ross, and others round out the hip-hopin', molly-poppin' dark side of this slab.
Of course, there's lots of Skrillex. His hit "Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites" opens it up, "With You, Friends (Long Drive)" makes an appearance. He also composed originals like "Smell This Money" and "Park Smoke" to add a bit of atmosphere to Korine's flick.
Cliff Martinez, who worked on the amazing soundtrack for Drive, also helped put this movie music together, composing tracks such as "Your Friends Ain't Gonna Leave With You" and "Big 'Ol Scardy Pants."
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All in all, the Spring Breakers soundtrack is a pretty tight collection of songs and sounds. Listening to it from beginning to end highlights the dynamic nature of the film. Sometimes it's energetic. Sometimes it's introspective. Sometimes it's fucking terrifying. Kind of like a night full of popped mollies.
"It's meant to be almost more physical, more experiential, close to something that was like a drug experience," Korine says. "You just want people to go see it, experience it, and have fun."