Zack Synder, why do you torment me so?
I have seen four of your movies, “Sucker Punch” included, and I still can’t decide if I hate you or love you.
It’s not because your movies are decidedly mediocre. It’s because in my mind, you have two fantastic movies in “300” and “Dawn of the Dead,” and two massive disappointments in “Watchmen” and, sadly, “Sucker Punch.”
Sucker Punch is not a bad movie, but I’m certainly not going to recommend it to my friends any time soon. The movie promises an escape from reality, in the vein of “Inception,” and lots of hot girls beating up zombie Nazis.
What it delivers is probably one of the most forgettable yet incomprehensible plots in the history of… well anything.
And hot girls beating up zombie Nazis.
I’m going to get the good out of the way first. The visuals are spectacular. To be honest, I don’t give Snyder-directed movies points for that anymore. You don’t get to be fantastic at one thing and repeatedly get praise for it. It’s like cheating.
What really stood out for me was this movie’s soundtrack. Lead actress Emily Browning even contributed to some of the remixes, and every song fit every action sequence perfectly. Sound editing and mixing were done to absolute perfection.
Considering the first part of the movie is like one giant music video, Snyder is lucky the music was done right.
The set pieces in the movie were also extremely well done. Whether is was Rocket and Baby Doll battling androids on a high-speed rail that’s about to explode or the entire crew taking on Nefarian over Mordor, everything is fast, fluid and pretty exciting to watch.
Now for stuff that made me cry.
There’s a reason why I’ve been avoiding the plot for roughly nine paragraphs. The plot avoids the movie for about 45 minutes. Emily Browning plays Baby Doll, who was unjustly sent to a mental asylum.
Baby Doll, with the help of fellow hot inmates, Rocket, Sweat Pea, Blondie and Amber, must escape the asylum, controlled by the charismatic jerk Blue, before the High Roller comes for Baby Doll.
This is the opposite of straightforward. Is the asylum real? Because most of the movie takes place in a brothel controlled by Blue. Are the girls actually dancers? Why is the Wise Man everywhere? Is the world really a dream within a dream within a dream?
I can’t really address these questions without ruining the movie. I promise you, it still wouldn’t make much sense even if I did.
The characters are extremely hard to care about. By the time the movie wants you to care about them, you’re resenting them for not making sense. I’d rather the movie just stayed simple and set up the characters better.
“Sucker Punch” has some serious identity problems. Sometimes its one giant metaphor and sometimes is soft-core gamer porn and sometimes it’s a fantastic music video. The movie just tries too much and misses too often.