Should I bother watching the movie Sucker Punch?

>> Sunday, August 07, 2011

Depends: do you like watching someone else play a videogame for nearly two hours?

Well, what's it about?

Basically, there are four worlds where the character has to go through various enemies and boss fights with these giant tengu-samurai, swarms of steam-powered zombie Nazis, a dragon and a horde of robots to collect a map, a cigarette lighter, a knife and a key. The graphics are pretty cool and the soundtrack is alright.

No, I mean, what's the plot?

The cutscenes don't add a whole lot, if that's what you're asking.

The cutsc--look, what's Sucker Punch about, is all I'm asking?

Fighting. I didn't see any logic puzzles or platforms.

What about those previews with the burlesque dancers shooting guns and stuff?

Sucker Punch is rated PG-13 for the dubious reason that the studio wanted to get lots of teenage boys in the theatre without their parents (which didn't really work; the movie barely made its budget back in worldwide theatrical release). There's an R-rated cut that apparently includes an extra sex scene, but it's hard to imagine that that actually salvages anything. If Sucker Punch had been a Paul Verhoeven joint it might've had the witty sleaziness director Zack Snyder clearly wants to sink to; on the other hand if it had been a Chris Nolan project, it might've managed the brain-fucking cleverness Snyder doesn't manage to pull off, either. Those directors come to mind because one way of summing up Sucker Punch would be it's Showgirls-meets-Inception minus the first film's smirking campiness and the latter's knowing meta-ness.

So it sucks?

Yes, but it isn't as terrible as you've probably heard.

Wait, that doesn't make any sense.

Go back to the first paragraph, then. Look, Sucker Punch is a shitty movie that fails to be as naughty or clever as it wants to be, but as a sitting-around-watching-Zack Snyder-play-on-an-XBox sort of experience it isn't unenjoyable if you don't mind that kind of thing.

Could he have fixed it?

The lack of health bars and a HUD map makes the interface problematic and some of the levels are too short.

No, seriously.

If you're going to make a pure-id-driven movie about gun-toting strippers blowing the shit out of stuff, go for the hard R. Sucker Punch is a big-budget grindhouse flick with no grind.

Also, Sucker Punch's framing plot, involving a mental hospital and an evil stepfather, ends up being profoundly stupid. It's really obvious what Snyder was trying to do with it--well, duh, subtlety not being Snyder's forte, everything he's trying to do is pretty obvious--but it doesn't work and... well, I already said it was profoundly stupid. Instead of punching up the film's sole twist (ha! there's a pun in their that works on several levels!), the framing plot pretty much kneecaps the whole movie, which is shaky to start with.

Speaking of punching things up: what's with the title?

The title is actually the nearest-to-clever thing about the movie, referring to that plot twist. In fact, if the movie's framing device actually worked, the twist might be actually clever and not merely almost clever. Anyway, the victim of the titular sucker punch isn't anyone who appears onscreen.

Anything else?

Zack Snyder really liked Brazil.

Who doesn't?

I know, right? That movie is fucking amazing. In fact, maybe you should watch that one again, instead.

I might have to do that. Anyway, does any of this mean anything for Man Of Steel?

It's going to suck. Everything Zack Snyder does badly doesn't belong in a Superman film and nothing he does well really belongs there, either. Bryan Singer's underappreciated interesting failure is going to look spectacular in retrospect.

So do you regret buying it?

Borders, dude; anyway, I read the reviews when it came out and I still had to know for myself.


Kitch,  Wednesday, August 10, 2011 at 12:21:00 PM EDT  

I enjoyed suckerpunch. Saw it twice in theaters (Almost a third time.)

Mindless? Yup. Utterly brainless flick, and sometimes that's ok.

What did suckerpunch have:

1) Amazing graphic visuals. The movie was PRETTY. Lots of pretty. Not just the girls, the settings, the fight sequences, and the like, all were amazing.

2) Killer Soundtrack. The music was good enough to get me to buy the soundtrack. (I almost never buy movie soundtracks.) The covers they made for the flick were amazing.

No, it's not a movie that's going to win academy awards, but who cares? A Lot of really fun movies never get considered for the awards. Go see it cuz it's fun.

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