What can I say about Sucker Punch? I'm reading reviews online to try and help myself make a little more sense of it, but I feel like it's getting worse reviews than what it should. It wasn't amazing, but it wasn't THAT bad! Let's break it down a little further...
The Good Stuff
Visually, it was stunning. All of Zach Snyders movies are. I knew going into this that the story wasn't great, but I knew I'd be entertained, and I certainly was. The fantasy worlds were absolutely fantastic, and in the words of Evan T., I felt like I was watching a live action anime. The girls were all gorgeous as well, so that just added to the prettiness of the rest of the movie.
I know that people are shitting all over the story as well, and honestly, the more I started thinking about it, the more I liked it. The story is about a girl, Baby Doll, whose mother dies, and leaves everything she has to Baby Doll and her sister. This infuriates her step-father who thought it would all go to him. Step dad gets drunk, goes to hurt Baby Doll, and instead decides to go after her younger sister. The step-father kills the sister, and pins it on Baby, which leads to her going to a mental hospital.
In the mental hospital is where the story begins to get a litte confusing. There are two different dream worlds going on. Baby creates the dream worlds to escape the real-world and the abuse she and the other girls are facing at the hands of the employees of the institution. Baby comes up with a plan to try and help herself and some of the girls escape.
Through a series of "adventures" the girls try and acquire everything needed to leave the facility. In the end, only one girl makes it out, and it is her responsibility to then "live for the rest of the girls".
It sounds pretty good on paper, right? Now lets look at
The Bad Stuff
The movie didn't know what it wanted to be. Did it want to be a drama? An expose of mental institutions in the 1960's? A sweet action flick? It was all of those things, and that was a problem. It made the story incredibly hard to understand. It's almost as if Snyder had all of these ideas for what he wanted in a movie, and just decided to mash them all together. It tended to take you out of the story at times. It wanted to be a little Girl Interrupted, while also wanting to be a little bit Inception, and that is where things fell flat to me.
The Ugly Stuff
The girls were absolutely beautiful, however, some of them had a rough time with the acting. For the most part, I liked Emily Browning as Baby Doll. She was like a less-irritating version of Paris Hilton to me. She has a super sweet girl voice what could get a little grating at times, but generally I liked her. Abby Cornish (Sweet Pea), Jamie Chung (Amber) and Jenna Malone (Rocket) all did an awesome job. Vanessa Hudgens (Blondie) though? Yikes. She had the look down, that's for sure. She played a dirty-hot girl amazingly. However, I'm not sure of it's due to her Disney upbringing, but the girl can't act. There was more than one scene in the movie where it was her turn to take the spotlight and shine, and she was SO bad that it literally took you out of the movie for a minute. She is a gorgeous girl, but she should stick to bubble-gummy Disney stuff until she's ready to take on something a little more serious.
All in all, I would give it a nice solid B-. I wouldn't spend $10 to go see it in the theater, but it'll be worth the watch on Blu Ray. That way, if you like it, you'll enjoy the visuals on your HDTV, and if you hate it, you won't be pissed that you spent $10. I will continue to go see Zach Snyders movies because if nothing else, they're entertaining and nice to look at. Some film critics are saying things like "THIS is the guy the studios trust to make the next Superman movie?!" To that I say, it can't be any worse than the last one, and even if the story falls flat, there will still be lots of cool things to look at.