Wednesday, August 27, 2014

On Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

Okay, so I'd never had any experience with Sin City until today. I never had much a reason, I just never got around to it. So I guess, at the end of the day, I'm not really a fan of either film. They're really stupid, but that's okay. They're chalk full of brutal violence, but that's okay. They're full of scantily clad women, but that's okay. 

My real problem has more to do with the source material. Not even the material, no ... just the source. Frank Miller is ... colorful to say the least. Or, one might say he's a misogynistic, homophobic fascist, and unfortunately, whatever qualities his works might have going for them, for me, personally, they're overshadowed by that. 

Suffice it to say, I find the man distasteful. And to put it bluntly, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For ... ugh. 

Most Idiotic Review

"I think it's almost as good as the first one. If you want to see a Sin City movie, that is exactly what you get." — Doug Walker 
Wow, Doug ... I'm sorry. I just ... I'm so sorry, but I disagree so hard ... oh well. So it goes. 

Most Accurate Review

"This is Rodriguez's second sequel in a row in which he turns sex, violence and exploitation into an occasional for dullness. For a film loaded with decapitations and gun-toting ladies in bondage gear, Sin City gets really tedious really quickly." — Alonso Duralde (The Wrap) 

This is one of the few times I checked the reviews before stepping into the movie. I really wasn't sure how it could be this bad, you know? I thought this might be a case where I and the critics really just didn't agree. That said ... well, I really agree. 

What I Say

The more of this movie I watched, the more I hated it. I actually haven't hated a movie like this ... wow, Turtles didn't piss me off this badly. That's how badly I reacted to this movie. Wow. Just wow. 

Plot — Well, we have two main stories. There's Joseph Gordon-Levitt who ... gah, I'm getting frustrated already. Okay, he's a lucky gambler who always wins and comes to Sin City to test his luck. And there's Josh Brolin who is playing as Clive Owen's character from the first film and they do a really shitty job establishing it's the same character. I didn't realize it until halfway through when Rosario Dawson reappears and recognizes him, cause I sure as hell didn't. Josh Brolin is caught up with Eva Green's character, a classic Femme Fatale, who ... wants power? I wasn't too clear on what exactly she wanted. 

The plots themselves aren't horrible, but the pacing in this movie is god-awful, and all those reviewers saying they were checking their watches? Seriously spent the majority of the time doing just that. Man. They tried to recreate the multiple storylines element from the previous movie, but except maybe Joseph Gordon-Levitt's, none of them are that interesting, but his is horribly anticlimactic. 

Jessica Alba's storyline, on the other hand, pisses me off to no end. Apparently, without her man, Bruce Willis in her life, she descends into alcohol and eventually self-mutilation. I really hate this kind of storytelling. One could argue it's just in character, but I'll argue it stinks of sexism, and knowing Frank Miller's history? I'm pretty secure in making that argument. 

The individual stories climax on their own time, contributing to the flawed pacing. In the first film, each climax felt like it was building toward a grander finale, or at least a personal, character driven one. I think that's what they were going for here, but I feel like they sidestepped success on that one.

Character — Okay, so we have some returning faces. Jessica Alba is back ... for the last half hour mostly. Marv returns, but he's sidelined as random muscle for the majority of the film. Josh Brolin plays Clive Owen's part from the first movie (I'm noticing that outside Marv ... I really don't know any of these characters' names) and while his arc takes up most of the first half of the film, I found myself far less invested than I expected to be. All in all ... a hodgepodge mess.

Spectacle — I will give the film credit, it is a violent, stylized, noir-fest ... but I don't think it's good. There is a distinct lack of pop, however you want to interpret that. At the end of the day, I suppose the film just really failed to grab me (like the first one did) leaving me with a muddled story and undertones of Frank Miller's insanity. 

No comments:

Post a Comment