From the moment I first saw a trailer for Sucker Punch, I knew that it would be one of the most awesome movies I would ever see. Knowing that it would be awesome left me to wonder, “…but will it be any good?”
And that’s where we are now.
Sucker Punch is, to paraphrase a good friend who was with me last night, a 125-Minute Nerd Orgasm. She did say this in an affectionate way because she, herself, is a nerd, married to a nerd, and friends with nerds.
Scantily clad hot chicks with large firearms and swords, biplanes, zeppelins, power armor, steampunk zombies, orcs, knights, dragons, castles, dungeons, B-25 bombers, robot soldiers, brothels, fishnets, monster samurai, more big guns, sage-like wise men, Zack Snyder, Jon Hamm, and an absolutely KILLER soundtrack. This movie has something for every variety of geek, nerd, or dork who ever breathed.
In what The Great Zack (director of two small, relatively unknown pictures, 300 and The Watchmen) termed as “Alice in Wonderland with machine guns”, we get an epic action movie covered in the thin candy shell of drama. Much like M&Ms, you’re not really there for the candy shell, you’re in it for the chocolate (and peanuts or pretzels or whatever additional filling you prefer).
The dramatic candy shell revolves around the tragic story of Baby Doll (Emily Browning) and her introduction to the girls of Lennox House, a home for insane girls. Her mother had recently died, leaving her and her sister in the care of a sexually abusive step-father who also wants the girls out of the way so that he can collect on the apparent fortune left behind by the mother.
While trying to defend her sister, Baby gets her stepdad’s gun and attempts to shoot him. A miss and a ricochet sends the bullet through her sister and gives her stepdad reason to have her committed (under the table, of course), which is where we meet Blue, the head orderly, who forges signatures to get things he’s paid for to happen within the asylum. Baby’s stepdad wants her to remember nothing of her former life and throws up some extra money to have her lobotomized (the RL setting is the 60s, and they’ll still do that). It will be five days until the doctor comes.
The asylum isn’t an asylum, it’s a brothel. The girls aren’t patients, they’re orphans and runaways forced by Blue (the boss) to serve his upper echelon clientele. The High Roller (Jon Hamm) is to purchase Baby Doll from Blue in five days. Baby meets up and is shown the ropes by the girls who will become her cadre of adventures – Rocket (Jena Malone), Sweet Pea (Abby Cornish), Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens), and Amber (Jamie Chung).
Every girl must have a dance routine. Madame Gorski (Carla Gugino) encourages each girl to make the dance their own; to use it as an escape. Baby Doll takes this literally and, when she dances, she enters her own world where she meets The Wise Man (Scott Glenn) who gives her a quest. When she gathers all the items needed for escape from the asylum/brothel, she can be free.
The acquisition of each item brings another fantasy landscape, each with its own theme song, each with its own insane fight sequence. This is the chocolate you’ve come for, my nerd brothers.
We get to watch the girls kick insane amounts of ass in an anime-type style that puts the Matrix to shame. I won’t go any further into the plot than I already have because some people might want to actually see the flick. I will say that there is a very soft twist at the end. Nothing too strenuous or over-obvious or even that spoils the movie, but its there, take it or leave it.
If you like intense and crazy fight scenes, this movie is for you. If you enjoyed the video game style battles of, say, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, you’re going to love this.
The fight scenes are exactly why I say that this movie was AWESOME. Just not good.
The dramatic plot isn’t very strong and is fairly easy to see through. You’ve seen the drama part of this movie before. But, like I said, you’re not here for the drama, you’re here for everything else. As long as you go in to the movie with this mindset, you’ll enjoy yourself.
Is it the CG Wankfest that so many people said it would be? Hell yes. But, it’s a much more entertaining CG Wankfest than the last few have been. In this writer’s opinion, it’s about a million times more fun than Avatar could have ever hoped to have been. And the action (which is really the reason you watched Avatar, too, admit it) is so much more awesome. PS, I’d rather watch hot chicks in fishnets kick ass than crazy blue cat people/night elves do it any day of the week.
This is not a movie for the critics. This is a movie for nerds. This is a movie for people who enjoy action movies. It will be panned by every publication (Entertainment Weekly already gave it a D). But, the fact that it is both awesome and not good at the same time will probably make it a cult classic.
Bidula’s Last Word – 7.5/10. I stand by that review proudly as a nerd and fanboy. You might not like it if you’re not the same way, but the hell with you, they didn’t make this movie for you.
Nerds of the world: See this movie IMMEDIATELY.
Tell me bitches don’t roll 20s like ALL NIGHT LONG.
Keep fighting the good fight.