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“Priscilla” Movie Review

Priscilla’s Beautiful yet Heartbreaking Story

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

When the “Elvis'' movie came out back in 2022, the film created a dramatic perspective of Elvis Pressley’s legendary life. But the new film, “Priscilla,” an adaptation of Priscilla Pressley’s memoir, “Elvis and Me,” starring Jacob Elordi as Elvis Pressley, and Cailee Spaeny as Priscilla Pressley, has sparked an entirely new storyline for the renowned artist and his wife. “Priscilla” was released in theaters on Nov. 3rd and follows Priscilla Pressley from when she met Elvis, to the day she left him. 

The director, Sofia Coppola, did an amazing job at accurately executing the book to film adaptation. Priscilla Pressley’s memoir, “Elvis and Me,” tells the story of Priscilla’s life with Elvis. The memoir has a steady pace, and is mostly anticlimactic, as Priscilla’s marriage was lonely for her. Coppola adapted the memoir to film accurately because she didn't add any crazy, climactic scenes to change her narrative. She kept the story true to Priscilla’s in real life, and emphasized her loneliness, as the majority of the film focused on Priscilla, and how she was constantly left alone in Elvis’s Graceland home, while he was away living the rockstar life. Although the film didn't have an intense climax, Coppola made sure it wasn't boring to watch. She included heart-racing scenes that captured Elvis’s anger and cruel treatment towards Priscilla. Many of Priscilla’s scenes were also relatable to young women. Coppola incorporated scenes that accurately demonstrated how girls feel when they fall in love, and how they would do anything to be with that person. These are all elements of Priscilla’s memoir, and they were accurately displayed in the film.

One of the factors that made the movie so engaging was the cast. Spaeney, the actress who played the role of Priscilla, had an amazing performance. Spaeny is a beautiful and talented actress, and she was truly mesmerizing to watch. The film begins when Priscilla meets Elvis at age 14, and ends when Priscilla is in her early 30s. 25-year-old Spaeny basically shapeshifted throughout the film and looked exactly like the age her character was supposed to be. The focus of the film was on Priscilla, and even in scenes with Elvis, Speaney’s character caught the viewer's eye through her captivating expressions and performance. She truly acquired the emotions that women relate to when they are young and in love, and in more intense scenes, her expressions made the audience empathize with her and how she must have felt.

The role of Elvis was played by Elordi, who has been in many influential pieces for this generation of teenagers. Elordi has truly evolved into a talented actor and did an amazing job of playing the complex character of Elvis. Elordi and Spaeny had intriguing chemistry and were the perfect actors to play the roles of Elvis and Priscilla. The two obtained the complex relationship between the two characters, and Eloridi’s height of 6 '5 emphasized how much power and control Elvis had over Priscilla. His tall height exposed how young Priscila was compared to him, as they met when she was 14 and he was 24.  

Coppola's cinematographic style was interesting and unique. Her style is unlike other directors because the movie did not have an intense plot or climax. Instead, it accurately shows Priscilla’s experience. Priscilla did not have a crazy life with a lot of action. It was slow and lonely, and she practically lived to please Elvis. The dazzling cinematography is what made the movie so mesmerizing. Priscilla had a pretty boring life outside of her time with Elvis, but Coppola used artistic cinematography to keep the movie interesting. Coppola's style captured the 1960’s fashion and the Americana aesthetic of the time.  She incorporated montages of Priscilla doing her makeup and hair and demonstrated how Elvis’s perception of beauty affected Priscilla’s appearance. The cinematography of the film was fascinating, and Coppola's approach emphasized the glamor of Priscilla’s life.

Overall, the movie, “Priscilla”, was incredible because it was memorable and mesmerizing. Some may view the movie as boring and anticlimactic, but it was different from most movies, and truly collected the perspective of Priscilla’s marriage to Elvis in an artistic way. The movie was effective as the director did an amazing job at adapting the book to film, incorporating a unique approach to the cinematography and having a perfect cast. 

<Star Rating>

Execution of memoir to film: ★★★★

Cast: ★★★★★

Cinematography: ★★★★

Overall: ★★★★


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