Saturday, March 26, 2011

Sucker Punch this!

J-Man has already more than adequately reviewed this movie, so I won't be doing that. Instead, I'm just going to discuss some of the reviews I've read about the movie. If you haven't seen it, you may find it informative. If you have seen it and liked it, or haven't and aren't going to bother, it may amuse you. If you've seen it and hated it, this is directed at you, so do us a favour and for once, pay attention.

A lot of reviews about this film seem to have 3 main problems:

1. The storyline made no sense.
2. The girls were dressed provocatively, thus making it akin to porn.
3. The action was over-the-top and visually uninspiring

Okay...[cracking knuckles] goes...

1. The storyline made no sense. Okay, I don't get it. Why? Maybe Snyder should have inserted title cards stating "Babydoll is now imagining being in a world where she and the girls are fighting Nazis"? I mean, I hear all the time how audiences are more sophisticated and you can't talk to them as if they're dumb. Then a movie like this comes out and people prove their dumb. I mean, everyone loved Inception. That was a dream within a dream within a dream within a dream. I didn't hear a lot of "I don't get it" from that movie. I heard a lot of people say the movie "blew their mind" (which is funny because the movie is basically using Chapter 1 of Psychology 101), but I don't get this "I don't get it" nonsense. It's simple really:

Babydoll imagines the she and the other girls are in a brothel, partly because it's a good simile to her current situation and also because it helps her deal with her situation. Plus, it's more interesting, visually. When she has to dance for someone, her mind goes into an even more outlandish setting and represents the battles she feel she has to overcome to achieve her specific goals.

There. 3 sentences explained it. A lot easier than say explaining a David Lynch movie (which everyone loves) or sometimes even a Darren Arofnofsky film (who has been bequeathed the great white hope by the clowns currently cluttering the internet). So, help me understand...what exactly don't you get?

2. The movie was porn. Noooooooo. As J-Man pointed out, there's no kissing, no sex. There may have been a rape attempt, but even that was heavily open to interpretation. If that's someone's idea of porn, I'd hate to see their reaction to real porn. Oh wait...I get it! It's because the girls are dressed all sexy!

Well, that's pretty much every Japanese anime/manga. Which are hyper-popular on both sides of the Earth. You think it sucks? Well, in my opinion, Japanese anime has a far more loyal following than North American animation. It's more profitable, goes on forever and from what I've seen, never diminishes in quality. No one is dying over how their characters are dressed and sometimes it's even skimpier than what you see in this movie. You want to tell the Japanese you find their stuff to be porn? Be my guest. They've just been totally destroyed by earthquakes, nuclear meltdowns and tsunamis. I'm sure they'd be more than receptive to your cheap opinion.

Oh, by the way, North America also has their actresses dress all slutty and no one cares. How about Chicago, Moulin Rouge, Nine, Sin City, Transformers 1 & 2, Basic Instinct, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dollhouse, to name just a few off the top of my head. Most of these movies or television shows are extremely popular and I didn't see the big flag-waving there about how the ladies were dressing.

3. The action was over-the-top and uninspiring. Yes, I have to admit, you could see the action in this movie. It wasn't done in the style today of putting a camera on the ground and punting it across a parking lot. Actually, the WWII war scene was shot in a frantic style, so I wouldn't say even this movie was completely clean, but it was still better than 99 percent of what I'm seeing. Nope, people today enjoy the style of Battle LA (or BLA as J-Man called it, which I think is the best way to think of that movie), where you can see nothing. That's exciting. I love it when I can't see anything or tell what's going on. That's great. How about I just give you $10 and close my eyes through the movie and then leave. That's what it turns out being.

The movie has lots of Slo-Mo though and that's bad. I mean, no popular films ever have slo-mo. Hard Boiled doesn't have slo-mo. Face/Off doesn't have slo-mo. Resident Evil 4 doesn't have slo-mo. Hell, The Matrix? Nope, they didn't have shots where the action didn't just slow down, but stopped entirely while the camera revolved around the picture. Nope, didn't happen. All part of my imagination. As for the over-the-top comment, go see any foreign or Hong Kong movie...go see an Indian film named Enthiran. Oh wait, that would involve you actually have to delve outside your North American "I only watch movies made after 2007" mentality, wouldn't it? Well, if you bothered, you would see the meaning of "over-the-top". You would also see the meaning of "really good."

So, that's my rebuttal to the common critiques of this movie. For all those out there who complain about about movies not being imaginative enough, here's your movie. For those who like "realism", avoid it. Or sit out on your front stoop. Then you can have all the realism you want.

- Stephenstein

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