It is with a heavy heart that I have to admit: my name is Ben, and I am a Millennial.

This admission hurts almost as much as the time I said I was a hipster; however, that admission was under much duress. I always wanted to believe that I was part of the tail end of Gen-X. However, it's something that I've come to understand about myself: I'm part of Gen-Y.

I have come to understand my generation after seeing Harmony Korine's opus Spring Breakers (2012). The film is a masterpiece, especially coming from a man whose previous film was called Trash Humpers (2009). Korine has been pushing the buttons of adults everywhere since his first screenplay was made into the sleazy indie classic Kids (1995). If there is one thing Korine and his films understand, it is disenfranchised youth and the lengths they will go to stand out and have fun. In each of his films, Korine chooses to write and portray youth with the skill of a Gonzo journalist documentarian. These kids are relatable, and that's what's truly horrifying.

The film centers around four childhood friends: Faith (Selena Gomez), Brit (Ashley Benson), Cotty (Rachel Korine), and Candy (Vanessa Hudgens). They are bored college students who yearn for a Spring Break party paradise that has been sold to them for years by MTV. They decide to rob a local restaurant to fund a trip to Florida. What follows in the first act is non-stop, dubstep-fueled partying complete with a buffet of drugs and saturated sexual imagery. The first act ends with the girls being arrested at a party. They are bailed out by Alien (James Franco), a seemingly foolish white rapper with cornrows and grills. From there, I can't ruin any of the exploitative, sleaze-on-film that follows this plot twist. The second and third acts fall into a neon nightmare that needs to be seen to be understood andcannot be spoiled.

The film is visually stunning, which is shocking coming from Harmony Korine. His films usually have a guerilla or lo-fi look to them, but here his aesthetic has completely changed. This decision is for the better. The film oozes Technicolor sleaze in every frame. The color palate alone screams of a director who has grown up and understands something new. Korine has said that his inspiration was Michael Mann's pitiful box office failure Miami Vice (2006). In an interview with the New York Timesblog, Korine said, "The reason I love his [Mann's] movies, and that movie in particular, is I could feel the place. When I watch that film, I don't even pay attention to what they're saying or the storyline. I love the colors, I love the texture." Similarly, Korine creates an atmosphere using color and texture, and his camera work has exponentially improved. The best examples are the scenes involving music; the pacing and length of the shots match the music impressively. All of Korine's technical abilities have improved, including his writing and storytelling.

This film has a unique perspective, specifically about my generation, that has been missed by most films that include kids my age. Films like Project X (2012) and 21 and Over (2013) have the spirit of existential search for meaning through partying, but Spring Breakers has it in spades, plus a beautiful visual style of its own. Project X does a better job, but it misses Spring Breakers by a mile. The girls and Alien attempt to find themselves through every debauched method possible. The movie becomes somewhat disturbing, not in the sense of gore, but in the sense of being uncomfortable. These kids become psychopathic over time. Gen-Y seems to be going through the same thing in the same way. The more guns and drugs we gain access to, the more of us wind up dead. The Gen-X apathy that was so prevalent in the 1990's has bled over to us; we are indifferent to our lives. The carefree nature of every kid in the film, whether Korine explores them or not, seems fun at first then takes a dark turn. My generation attempts to understand themselves through drugs, sex, and violence. Korine puts all of that front and center. These characters are perfect representations of the post-music video MTV generation raised on promises of Carmen Electra and mind-numbing amounts of alcohol. Spring Breakers is a must-see for anyone who has taken a selfie with molly on their tongue while the real world passes them by.

Spring Breakers Trailer

Ben McGinnis is a senior English major concentrating in Film and Media Studies. He's a nocturnal, film-obsessed gentleman feminist who has seen well over a thousand films.