Sucker Punch – Movie Review
Director Zack Snyder has made quite a great name for himself. In 2004 he directed the Dawn of the Dead remake that turned a lot of heads, but it wasn’t until 2006 when 300 came out that he really started to get noticed. 300 was a huge hit, and because of it he was given the task of adapting the cult favorite comic book Watchmen into a feature film. Long thought impossible to make, Zack did an admirable job and was finally given the chance to finally direct a personal project that he wrote as well as directed. Sucker Punch is his pet project, and Warner Brothers is hoping he continues his streak of hit movies.
Sucker Punch begins with the death of Baby Doll’s (Emily Browning) mother, which leaves her and her sister in her stepfather’s care. Her stepfather is a cruel man however, and one night he goes after her sister and attempt to rape her. Baby Doll grabs her mother’s gun to try and save her sibling, but when she fires it she accidentally kills her sister. Her stepfather has her institutionalized for her actions and schedules her for a lobotomy. She has five days until the procedure, and thus five days to make her escape. In order to cope with the dark reality in which she lives, Baby Doll retreats into a fantasy world. The institution becomes a brothel, and the procedure becomes a high roller coming to take her virginity. Here she forges relationships with the other girls trapped inside, and with them they travel deeper into her imaginary worlds to find objects that will help them all escape. Each item can be found in different worlds, with different creatures guarding them, but in the end the objective is always the same: fight to survive.
Visually, Sucker Punch is a treat. The different worlds come together nicely, and the stylized atmospheres are fun to watch. Unfortunately that and the soundtrack are the only good things about this movie. The story makes no sense, the characters are ridiculous, the acting is terrible, and the overall movie is a bore. It’s like watching a music video mixed with a video game for 2 hours without being able to interact with it. It will be a surprise if this movie does not take home multiple Razzies next year. In fact it’s hard to imagine that anything worse than this movie will come out this year. Emily Browning shows no personality playing her character at all, nor do any of the other girls starring in this movie. At times it looks like she is even bored by what is going on. One of the serious problems with this movie is that there are no stakes because you know everything is all in Baby Doll’s mind. The only time there are stakes is when she is in the real world, which doesn’t happen for very long. Of course this means you know when the girls are fighting zombie Nazis or robots on a train that nothing can happen to them. They’re just going to kick ass and head onto the next challenge. That prevents you from feeling anything for them at all. In the end it means you just don’t care.
Avoid Sucker Punch unless you’re looking for a loud place to sleep. It’s a waste of two hours and a waste of however much money you spent on it. Hopefully Zack Snyder’s reboot of Superman is better than this movie was.
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