At The Movies


Director: Sofia Coppola
Starring: Cailee Spaeny, Jacob Elordi, Ari Cohen, Dagmara Dominczyk, and more.

When teenage Priscilla Beaulieu meets Elvis Presley at a party, the man who is already a meteoric rock-and-roll superstar becomes someone entirely unexpected in private moments: a thrilling crush, an ally in loneliness, a vulnerable best friend. Through Priscilla’s eyes, Sofia Coppola tells the unseen side of a great American myth in Elvis and Priscilla’s long courtship and turbulent marriage, from a German army base to his dream-world estate at Graceland, in this deeply felt and ravishingly detailed portrait of love, fantasy, and fame.

Stepping into the shoes of a teenage girl who finds herself the chosen one by the world’s most illustrious celebrity is a narrative many might daydream about. But for Priscilla Presley, it was her reality. This tale, ripe with every teen’s wildest dreams and every woman’s deepest heartache, has been brought to life with a sensitivity that could have easily been lost under a less discerning eye.

Directed by Sofia Coppola, the film navigates the intricate dynamics of power with grace, offering a perspective that feels profoundly real, rather than a fabrication tailored for the male gaze. Through Priscilla’s lens, we’re invited into a world that, while enchanting on the surface, harbors moments that are challenging to witness. Scenes where Priscilla models outfits under the scrutinizing eyes of Elvis and his entourage, or experiences gaslighting, stir a deep empathy for her. She’s portrayed as a young, isolated, and innocent soul yearning for the storybook romance she was promised.

Jacob Elordi, stepping into Elvis’s shoes, was a surprise. Initially, I was skeptical about his ability to embody such an iconic figure, but his performance surpassed expectations. Perhaps his youth and relative obscurity compared to Elvis’s monumental fame worked to his advantage. Cailee Spaeny captured Priscilla’s innocence with a finesse that, when juxtaposed with Elordi’s portrayal, emphasized her youthful vulnerability—possibly an intentional contrast to underscore her character’s journey.

The film’s visual storytelling deserves accolades, particularly for its set design. Memorable scenes, such as the strikingly decorated Christmas trees and a poignant moment with Elvis framed in a room adorned with metallic love hearts, were nothing short of artistic brilliance.

This movie is a must-watch for anyone who has ever harbored a celebrity crush and pondered the “what if.” It peels back the layers of fantasy to reveal the complex realities beneath, making for a compelling and empathetic narrative. I recommend this one.

Isabella Jordan