Let’s just punch Zack
FRESH FROM Watchmen and Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole, the director of 300 needs a credible hit if he wants to keep us onside. Unhappily, Sucker Punch is the worst film of Zack Snyder’s career and may indeed be the worst film of any career.
Do believe the hype: the toxic US reviews and unspectacular boxoffice takings are no accident. Within five minutes, this craven, baffling, tedious action chick flick has established itself as a monstrous cross between an unlovely beta videogame and a Turkish Sin City. It gets worse.
The plot sees Emily Browning’s Baby Doll packed off to the world’s most ridiculous psychiatric facility. There, traumatised by the prospect of a lobotomy, our heroine imagines an even more horrible world wherein she and her foxy fellow inmates reside in a whorephanage. (It’s one of those brothels where they keep orphans for rich men.)
There, traumatised by the prospect of “entertaining” wealthy clients, Baby Doll imagines an even more horrible world wherein she and her foxy fellow hookers battle CGI monsters and unintentionally hilarious digital armies.
Undaunted by the messy chronology and an inability to disassociate correctly, Baby Doll hatches an escape plan. Using her amazing dance skills, she and the gals will simply distract their enemies by busting some moves. Success. Huzzah.
Huh? Is there any point in complaining that Sucker Punch equates the hoochy-cooch with fighting off the Nazis? Or that the heroine is called Baby Doll and spends the entire time with her lips pursed to form the word “shoe“? Or that the girls take ballet and battle aliens in fishnets and corsets?
Why stop to quibble about the “empowering” misogyny when there are so many other things to choose from? The soundtrack is dad rock, the dialogue subnormal. The dreams within dreams make Freddy vs Jason look like Inception. Abbie Cornish still can’t sound human while doing an American accent. This bit is from Call of Duty. That bit is the video for Aerosmith’s Janie’s Got a Gun.
To cap it all the film-makers keep it clean enough to make an all-ages rating. You know, for kids. Suck Punch, more like.