POSTED BY MICHAEL A. SMITH, March 24, 2011 Share
Starring: Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish and Vanessa Hudgens
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Rated: PG 13
Running time: 1 hours 49 minutes
Zack Snyder has made some great films. The remake of “Dawn of the Dead,” “300” and “Watchmen” if I need to name them. He also made the horrible “Legend of the Guardians: the Owls of whatever.” It was with that last film in mind that I took in his latest film, a kick ass/action packed spectacle called “Sucker Punch.”
Meet Baby Doll (Browning). She has been placed in a mental hospital by her stepfather (Gerard Plunkett), a man who makes “Lolita’s” Humbert Humbert seem like father of the year in comparison. There she meets other girls in the same situation. There’s Rocket (Jena Malone) and her sister Sweet Pea (Cornish). The very dark haired Blondie (Hudgens). And Amber (Jamie Chung).
Meet Baby Doll (Browning). She is studying under a wise man (Scott Glenn), learning to do battle with the enemies of the world. There she meets other girls in the same situation. There’s Rocket (Jena Malone) and her sister Sweet Pea (Cornish). The very dark haired Blondie (Hudgens). And Amber (Jamie Chung).
Meet Baby Doll (Browning). She’s the new girl and soon to be featured dancer in a club where high rollers get a little more bang for their buck. There she meets other girls in the same situation. There’s Rocket (Jena Malone) and her sister Sweet Pea (Cornish). The very dark haired Blondie (Hudgens). And Amber (Jamie Chung).
Confused? Join the club.
Full of noise and scantily clad women, “Sucker Punch” is the film equivalent of the breath mint known as Certs. That’s right, it’s three…three…three films in one. Or better put, it’s “300” meets “Moulin Rouge” on “Shutter Island.” As in previous Snyder films, the action is non-stop. Set to a modern day soundtrack that includes great cover versions of such songs as “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This),” “White Rabbit” and “We Will Rock You,” “Sucker Punch” is a look at both the future and past, a time where young women blindly follow their masters, obediently nodding when he spouts such nuggets of wisdom as “if you don’t stand for something you’ll fall for anything.” OK, so Snyder (and co-writer Steve Shibuya) aren’t the best at dialogue. What he is a master at, however, is seamlessly blending all kinds of on-screen action into an almost photo like beauty. As Baby Doll and her gang battle all sorts of baddies, slow motion shots of shell casings ejecting surround them like rain.
The cast of young actresses are well cast. Browning, all blonde hair and red lips, is as silent as Clint Eastwood during his spaghetti western days and just as deadly. Cornish, who also co-stars in last weeks’ “Limitless” is excellent as well and almost unrecognizable from that Bradley Cooper starrer. The rest of the main cast are equally talented, with special mention going to Malone, who hasn’t done work this good since “For Love of the Game” and “Donnie Darko.”
Great action and good acting usually overcome a bad script and that is the case here.
This Week's Movie Review of "Sucker Punch" is ©2011 by Mike Smith. All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2011 by Nolan B. Canova.
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