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The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

Your School. Your Paper. Since 1936.

The Suffolk Journal

‘Priscilla’ is the take on Elvis we’ve been waiting for

Philippe Le Sourd Courtesy of A24
(L-R) Cailee Spaeny, Jacob Elordi.

Priscilla,” directed by Sofia Coppola, is yet another example of why women’s voices are vital in media. “Priscilla” is a take on Priscilla Presley’s 1985 book “Elvis and Me. 

Cailee Spaeny starred as Priscilla Presley, with Jacob Elordi starring as Elvis Presley himself. In all, both actors did an incredible job representing this iconic couple. From the beginning the film portraying 14-year-old Priscilla, and finishing with her at 28. 

Spaeny’s ability to show such a tragic and sensitive story really shined through, along with Elordi as Elvis, which was a refreshing take on the rock giant. 

Elvis, as well as his relationship to Priscilla, has been a hot topic in the film world ever since the 2022 release of “Elvis” starring Austin Butler and Tom Hanks. “Elvis” was a story of Elvis’ life perspective from childhood to his last performance, however, Priscilla’s story in “Elvis” was hardly covered. 

Online users were quick to compare both Butler and Elordi’s performances. Overall, Elordi’s sluggish, messy and pill-filled take on Elvis felt like his true cynical and pedophilic story was finally being told. 

“Priscilla” opens with 24-year-old Elvis taking interest in an underage Priscilla and inviting her to a party while he was serving in the U.S. Army. From there, Priscilla is nothing but taken advantage of. After gaining the trust of her protective parents, Elvis encouraged her to have long stays at his Graceland estate.

Throughout the growth of their relationship, Priscilla is still a child and this film makes sure you know that. In one scene, Priscilla spends her high school graduation celebrating with Elvis and his friends. As the film climaxes, she is put into nonstop overwhelming situations like taking pills with him and being overexposed to the attention of the media.

The Elvis lifestyle eventually became too much for Priscilla during Elvis’ Las Vegas residency. The film ends with Priscilla packing up her life and taking her and her child away from the mess of Elvis.

The film itself is breathtaking with Coppola’s talent for creating dream-like visuals that connect perfectly to the subject of her films. 

The set and costume designs were some of the most memorable parts of this movie. From Priscilla’s lip prints on her letters to her hanging up anything he sent her, this film encapsulates the bittersweet moments of what it feels like to love as a teenage girl. 

Scenes where Priscilla stayed overnight at Graceland and brought along all her beauty products were some of the sweetest moments of the film. The themes of femininity and girlhood connect almost instantly with viewers. Fashion fanatics will also have a great time admiring “Priscilla” due to the attention to detail in all of their outfit choices. Some of her most iconic 60s and 70s outfits were recreated to perfection, including Chanel recreating her famous wedding gown. 

Coppola’s greatest talent is capturing girlhood in ways that aren’t action-packed and bubbly. “Priscilla” shares similar themes as Coppola’s other films “The Virgin Suicides” and “Marie Antoinette.” They tell the complicated yet beautiful stories of girls who suffer their fates because of unfortunate situations. 

Priscilla” is definitely worth watching with women’s stories being so important to listen to and learn from. Overall, it was satisfying to see Priscilla’s story come to life and find representation after a lifetime of her story not being told.

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