Think Of The Homeless

There are over 30 million Americans who live on the streets of our nation. Can you consider giving something to a shelter near you? Your fellow human beings need socks because they walk everywhere. Food and shelter are great too, if they will take them. So please give.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Reviews by Hubie Goode: Sucker Punch

Sucker Punch

Genre: Action & Adventure, 
Mystery & Suspense, Science Fiction & Fantasy

Synopsis: “Sucker Punch” is an epic action fantasy that takes us into the vivid imagination of a young girl whose dream world provides the ultimate escape from her darker reality. Unrestrained by the boundaries of time and place, she is free to go where her mind takes her, and her incredible adventures blur the lines between what’s real and what is imaginary. She has been locked away against her will, but Babydoll (Emily Browning) has not lost her will to survive. Determined to fight for her freedom, she urges four other young girls-the reluctant Sweet Pea (Abbie Cornish), the outspoken Rocket (Jena Malone), the street-smart Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens) and the fiercely loyal Amber (Jamie Chung)-to band together and try to escape a terrible fate at the hands of their captors, Blue (Oscar Isaac) and Madam Gorski (Carla Gugino), before the mysterious High Roller (Jon Hamm) comes for Babydoll. Led by Babydoll, the girls engage in fantastical warfare against everything from samurais to serpents, with a virtual arsenal at their disposal. Together, they must decide what they are willing to sacrifice in order to stay alive. But with the help of a Wise Man (Scott Glenn), their unbelievable journey-if they succeed-will set them free.. -- (C) Warner Bros More

Rated: PG-13 – See Full Rating for thematic material involving sexuality, violence and combat sequences, and for language

Directed & Written By: Zack Snyder
  Emily Browning • Babydoll
  Abbie Cornish • Sweet Pea
  Jena Malone • Rocket
  Vanessa Hudgens • Blondie
  Jamie Chung • Amber

Ridiculous. Absurd. Exploitative. Sexist. 
Existentialist. Corrupt. Slimy. Sophomoric.
For the “women in peril” crowd only. Teenage boys who play video games will also love it. Unfortunately, in the middle of the day during the week, the theater I was in had too many older men, sitting alone in various seats around the movie plex watching this one. What have we come to?

Frank Miller’s look and feel of 300, and the stylized camera work of Watchmen are mixed with an art palette that is a bit too reminiscent of a salad left out on the counter too long. All the comic book conventions are in full display here as towering demonic Asian adversaries take on school girls with samurai swords, who themselves cannot be injured, but the Amelikite enemies can be felled by a common sword. What? No light sabers? Of course, the heroine’s commando team also takes on Nazis as well as Ninjas, and also some dragons, one of which manages NOT to flood the crew’s airplane with a column of deadly fire when it could have easily done so and ended things right there.

It’s all rather ridiculous, and yet right up the “girls with guns” genre Quentin Tarantino is so fond of. Emily browning plays “Baby Doll” (not Baby Spice, but you could have fooled me, no musical numbers folks) who is wrongly committed to an insane asylum, so we are lead to believe, but then who really knows where the real truth lies in this hodge podge of an action movie steroided with video game conventions?

Wrongly accused of killing her own sister (we think) she bonds with a group of other inmates, all nubile and about to burst upon the world of full blown womanhood, eh hem. They plan to gain their freedom from the obviously puerile and corrupt keepers of their imprisonment.... at least we think so. The problem is that viewpoints are so slanted and one sided that it’s hard to know if the girl’s imagination is highly prejudiced in her interpretation of things that happen to her and the group.

She does, therefore escape into her imagination, where anything can happen and she can survive anything. She is about 5 foot 4 inches tall and her compatriots are not all that statuesque either, but she manages to ruthlessly kick butt anyway, even though the giant enemies often look dead already, and who can kill animated dead? Anyhow, the action sequences happen while the girl dances in real life for her “suitors” whom she is being trained to “pleasure” in what is kind of a strip club/Moulon Rouge from hell. Though there is never any sex that would bring an “R” rating, there is plenty of concentration on the sexuality and exploitation of women’s physical place and attributes that is a bit too “enjoyed” by the movie itself. I wouldn’t let my kid see this one based solely on that, and we’d talk about the subversive nature of this sort of thing in detail.

For cartoony action scenes, the choreography is well done, one can almost see the comic book panels and the usual contrivances coming from a mile away. “Girls with guns” action almost warrants bloodless scenes, since it would be distracting from the “rason de etre” of the whole narrative. You have to accept a lot of silly, impossible antics in the violence and it is only the walking dead or the dragon who get the worst of it. For action scenes themselves, the girls are no punching bags, and I was glad to see it, but they also survive a lot of things that require full fledge fantasy daydreaming to accept.

I will say one thing though about the performances, I felt that Miss Abbey Cornish, who plays Sweet  Pea, was a stand out, and deserved to be the superheroine of the movie. She has the height, look and feel of the position. Someone out there has to pick this up besides me.

The main bad guy, (Oscar Issac?) the keeper of the girls, also has a fine turn as a slimy villain who reminded me of real people I have known. He was downright great at being slimy and corrupt. Perhaps the best acting job of the whole cast.

Unfortunately, I was not all that impressed by the rampant existentialism used as philosophy in the movie, with its pretentious clap trap that is supposed to inject some type of philosophical meaning into the narrative. Complete hooey! But you know it sounds good, and is attractive in a way to the common person, despite its empty promises.  I suppose one could say this about Sucker Punch also, as a writer once said:

"Out, out, brief candle! Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and then is heard no more: It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing."

Yep, it’s a 2.5/5. And only for the production values, if indeed it has any values at all.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Escape The Hezbollah