5 hours ago
Saturday, March 26, 2011
Sucker Punch Reviewed
I saw Sucker Punch last night with a group of friends. I had read a number of reviews before hand which were mostly negative--though some of the them were so hyperbolic and shrill it actually made me intrigued as to what had gotten their dander so up.
My advice: be not too dissuaded by the reviews--if it looks interesting to you go see it. I thought it was good, as did most of my friends. Even the ones who were cooler towards it found it compelling in many aspects and though it offered a lot to think about. It's far from perfect, and Snyder's reach likely exceeded his grasp, but its also far from vapid.
The good: there are great visuals--things you really haven’t seen done before to this degree (particularly in the robot fight scene), there's good music, and sumptuous production design. There's a straight forward but serviceable plot that doesn't flinch from the likely unpleasant outcomes of certain realities, but doesn't wallow in them either. The ultimate meaning of events is ambiguous, and the relationship of reality to dream in the film, offers things to think about and discuss, you like to think about and discuss film. Despite what some people would have you believe this is indeed a film where things are going on--and it isn’t necessarily killing dragons and shooting down zeppelins (though there is that).
You should see it if: you don’t mind a large wallop of artifice in your film (so you can groove with something like Moulin Rouge, 300, or Speed Racer--In fact, it might be helpful to think of it as a musical where the songs have replaced by fantasy action sequences), and if you like visual style-heavy, thematic, but not big on character exploration, media like many Heavy Metal-style euro-comic stories, films like El Topo, or some anime.
You probably shouldn’t see it if: somewhat “downer” material really bothers you (things like snakepit mental institutions, lobotomies, or women forced to work in brothels), if anything that seems similar to a video game incenses you, or purposeful anachronisms bug you, or club-ish covers of rock tunes are anathema, or if the things described in paragraph above this one sounded awful.