Sucker Punch is from director Zack Snyder, who also did 300 and Watchmen. If you have seen those two films, you might notice that Snyder has a very strong style, and it’s no different here. Sucker Punch is marketed towards the video game crowd with a trailer full of skimpy-dressed girls, swords, guns, monsters, and lots of explosions. Sadly, everything in the trailer is everything you will be getting.
Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish and Jena Malone play the three girls that this film focuses on. There are little back-stories to each of them but they were not interesting in the least. Jamie Chung and Vanessa Hudgens appears for the sake of having some familiar faces around, but they weren’t terrible by any means. The best acting job here is either Abbie Cornish or Jena Malone but that isn’t saying much. Dialogue is all clichéd and boring, most of which you want to just skip and get to the action.
Speaking of action, the action scenes here are all what you would expect from a Zack Snyder film. Slow-motion is used to do the usual bullet time effect, together with lots of camera spinning which makes you giddy for a bit. The first action scene in the film has Emily Browning’s character Babydoll taking on three giant samurai, one of which is firing a giant machine gun. It’s loud and stylistic like the rest of the action scenes, and it’s actually pretty enjoyable. However, after seeing these girls kill zombies, dragons, and robots in various different dream sequences, it does get tiresome after a while and my ears were ringing after I stepped out of the theater.
The concept of Sucker Punch reminded me of Inception because the girls have to go into these imaginary sequences to complete their missions. None of these dream settings make any sense whatsoever, but at least I was interested to see how they were going to succeed. This film also reminded me of Scott Pilgrim vs. the World as the girls have to collect five items, just like how Scott Pilgrim has to go through seven villains. Whenever you get this kind of “numbered” stories, you always keep count in your head and are just waiting for that final one. Sucker Punch falls victim to this type of story telling, and an unsatisfying conclusion left me confused.
Sucker Punch feels like a video game, but I bet you can get more bang for your buck if you just went to play an actual video game. All the visual effects were fun to watch, but in the end I didn’t care for any of the characters. After sitting through two hours of loud explosions and gunfire, I’m starting to fear for the upcoming Superman movie “from the director of 300, Watchmen, and Sucker Punch“.