30 jun. 2011

My Review: Sucker Punch (3/10)

¨ Who teaches us what`s real, and how to laugh at lies? Who decides why we live, and what we'll die to defend? Who trains us, and who holds the key to set us free? It's you. You have all the weapons you need. Now fight! ¨

Zach Snyder has adapted various graphic novels into films in the past and I enjoyed his movies very much; I was a big fan of 300 and Watchmen and I thought those movies were terrific. In Sucker Punch Snyder tries something new; he wrote the story instead of adapting another novel, but still tried to give it the same feel and look his other films had. The look of the film is also stylish, full of CGI, and the graphics make us think we are playing a videogame instead of watching a movie. This style worked for me in the past because Snyder`s stories were interesting. In Sucker Punch I just couldn’t get into the story, I didn’t like any of the characters, and thought the plot was just ridiculous. The approach was also very hypocritical because the movie tries to preach about female empowerment and girl power, but the entire time the movie is targeted towards a male audience; we have girls fighting in short skirts, and the male characters have little screen time. I can see how this movie might be enjoyed by a young male audience, but it just didn’t work for me. Comparing it to 300 and Watchmen this movie doesn’t even come close, but even before watching Sucker Punch I had lowered my expectations with the trailer. I understood the metaphor and ideas the story was trying to get across, but it was just meaningless with these characters since they weren’t even developed at all. There was not one interesting character, they were all one dimensional. The screenplay was adapted by Snyder himself and Steve Shibuya, but the entire movie relies only on the CGI.

Baby Doll (Emily Browning) is sent to a mental asylum by her stepfather (Gerard Plunkett) after her mother dies and she accidently kills her little sister while trying to protect her from her abusive stepfather. She was aiming at him, but she missed and her little sister suffered the consequences. Baby Doll is institutionalized and in five days the doctor will perform a lobotomy on her so that she forgets everything her stepfather has done. Blue (Oscar Isaac) receives an important amount of money from the stepdad to make sure the doctor signs the ok for the lobotomy. Dr. Vera Gorski (Carla Gugino who also starred in Watchmen with Snyder) never signs the petition because Blue falsifies the signature and so everything is set for within five days when the Doctor (Jon Hamm) comes back. Baby Doll isn’t alone in the asylum. She befriends four other female companions: Sweet Pea (Abbie Cornish) and her sister, Rocket (Jena Malone), Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens), and Amber (Jamie Chung who was recently seen in The Hangover 2). Baby Doll decides to create an alternate reality in order to avoid her pain and guilt. In this fantastical world she becomes a sort of warrior and with the help of a Wise Man (Scott Glenn) she comes up with a plan to escape the mental facility. Along with her four friends they go on a mission to retrieve the five elements they will need in order to escape. In this fantastical world they have to face ninja robots, Nazi zombie`s and different kind of monsters. The lines between fantasy and reality begin to blur as they try to collect the items and break free from the asylum.

The characters are so poorly developed that I really didn’t care whether or not they escaped the institution. Even the fantasy clips in which all the main action and cool effects take place felt more like music videos due to the loud music and videogame style graphic. The movie is empty; simply eye candy and I couldn’t see anything philosophical or deep about it. I really was disappointed with this movie, but I know Zach Snyder will bounce back. He should stick to graphic novels. As for the performances there was nothing remarkable about any of them, but the cast isn’t to blame because the entire movie relied only on the special effects and not on trying to develop the characters. The effects are interesting at some times, but we`ve seen them all before and there is nothing new to Sucker Punch. This will definitely be on my list of worst films of the year; it was a huge disappointment for me. Everyone has the right to make a bad film; even Pixar came short with Cars 2 so I don’t think Zach Snyder should be worrying about how things turned out in Sucker Punch. Some young males might want to check this movie out, but I wouldn’t recommend it.


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