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Suckerpunch Review

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Sucker Punch

Warner Brothers

PG 13 120 min



Well gang, I'm gonna start you off with a spoiler alert.

I have no idea how much difference it's going to make as to your enjoyment of this one or if you plan to see it at all but it is weird enough to be surprising.

I'll be honest; I'd seen trailers and was really really bumming out that the choices for the week (we do have a deadline and I try to stay current) were between this and DIARY OF A WIMPY KID 2.

Right off the bat I hated the title as badly as the previews that showed little but FX, ninja battle scenes and a no star cast, some of my least favorite things to carry a film.

On top of that it was Wednesday, which isn't even cheap popcorn day at the Montrose Movies. Oh well.

The epiphany began within minutes.

This thing really looks great. There's a surreal half color tone that really sets off the opening scenes.

After her mother's funeral little “Babydoll” (Emily Browning) is about to be killed or worse by what seems to be an evil stepfather.

She picks up a pistol, fires and accidentally kills her little sister. She winds up in a mental hospital half SNAKE PIT, half TWILIGHT ZONE where she'll be lobotomized in five days time.

Then, believe it or not, things get weird.

Babydoll either in a dream trance or a parallel world finds herself in a brothel, the inmates doctors, orderlies all have changed into white slave prostitutes, the madame and the pimp etc in the manner of a truly bizarre WIZARD OF OZ. But wait! There's more!

The girls are forced to dance for prospective “clients” but when Babydoll takes the stage she becomes unstuck in this unreality into yet another. She winds up in an Asian temple where a grizzled priest (Scott Glenn) sends her on a quest. If she can recover five items she can win freedom.

Then she battles a horde of Ninja monsters, defeats them, and returns to the stage.

This will happen again and again as she, now accompanied by the other girls in wild costumes fight Nazi zombies, fire breathing dragons and robots.

I kid you not.

The dialogue, especially Glenn's cliches is laughable, the “philosophy” cornball and the quest barely up to the dumbest video game for complexity.

Still I was involved the entire time. Why? The entire project, especially the cinematography the plot and the crazy twists were so incredibly insane yet so

Childishly simple that I was never bored and constantly riveted.

I can easily imagine someone writing this off as a piece of pretentious crap but on that popcornless afternoon I was intrigued.

We'll see what director Zack Snider does next. I hear it's Superman.

Good luck kid, I'll not be as understanding if that one sucks!




email westsidesteve@aol.com

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