UK Release Date: 1st April 2011
Watched on Sky+ Sunday 15th April 2012.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE MAY BE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
Although I may not be the target audience for this film, I decided to give it a viewing because of the very mixed press it got at the time of release. I must say I did find it interesting, but ultimately it left me with far more questions than answers. I’m usually pretty good at following the most complicated of plots, but this one was all over the place and, what makes matters worse, never really resolved itself by the end. But more of my thoughts after this very brief summary… That’s if I can think of a way of putting it that makes any sense.
Having lost her mother and having been framed for the murder of her kid sister, Babydoll is put into a mental asylum by her evil stepfather. Here she finds her only escape is into a fantasy that she invents. In this fantasy all the inmates (all girls by the way) work in an upmarket bordello (whore house to those that aren’t familiar with the term). The girls are to put on shows for clients in a little theatre and they are supervised in this by Vera. The other girls are; Sweet Pea, Rocket, Blondie and Amber, and they all have their own reasons for wanting to leave (apart from the obvious – of course). In one of her flights of fancy, Babydoll is told by Wise Man that the High Roller is coming for her in five days and she must find five items in order to escape. These are; a map, fire, a knife, a key and a fifth object that he cannot (or will not) tell her. And so the girls begin their quest to retrieve these objects and each time one is being retrieved, Babydoll dances and another fantasy is played out. Will they get all the objects in time for Babydoll to make her escape? Well, I guess that would be a bit of a spoiler and so I’ll leave it there before the Spoiler Police catch on to my rouse.
There is some really spectacular CGI in this film and the fighting sequences are all very well done. It’s a shame the narrative couldn’t live up to the visuals though. As far as performances go, well everyone did a pretty good job without anyone really standing out. So honourable mentions must go to; Emily Browning as Babydoll, Abbie Cornish as Sweet Pea, Jena Malone as Rocket, Vanessa Hudgens as Blondie, Jamie Chung as Amber, Carla Gugino as Dr. Vera Gorski, Oscar Isaac as Blue Jones, Jon Hamm as High Roller/Doctor and Scott Glenn as Wise Man.
I finished watching this film with the feeling that I had just watched a bunch of music video’s patched together with a very flimsy storyline. Admittedly, they were very spectacular music videos with some spectacular effects, but I didn’t feel it made for a film. There was no way I could form any connection to any of the characters because there was no time. The action comes thick and fast and, although there’s a lot of talking in between, little of it serves to explain what’s happening or even why. Over all, great to look at, but with little substance… I guess those that get their kicks from watching scantily clad young women with big guns will like it, but it really didn’t do a great deal for me I’m afraid.
My Score: 5.7/10
IMDb Score: 6.1/10 (based on 99,643 votes at the time of going to press).
MetaScore: 33/100: (Based on 29 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com at the time of going to press).
Rotten Tomatoes ‘Tomatometer’ Score: 23/100 (based on 196 reviews counted at the time of going to press).
Rotten Tomatoes ‘Audience’ Score: 47/100 (based on 83,935 user ratings counted at the time of going to press).
If you’re crazy enough… You can find me on Facebook at:
Wiseman: Don't ever write a check with your mouth you can't cash with your ass. Oh, and one more thing... don't wake the mother.
Dr. Vera Gorski: I want you to dance.
[Bjork's "Army of Me" playing over speakers]
Dr. Vera Gorski: ...
Dr. Vera Gorski: If you do not dance you have no purpose. And we don't keep things here that have no purpose. You see, your fight for survival starts right now. You don't want to be judged? You won't be. You don't think you're strong enough? You are. You're afraid. Don't be. You have all the weapons you need. Now fight.
Sweet Pea: And finally. This question. The mystery of whose story it will be, of who draws the curtain. Who is it that chooses our steps in a dance? Who drives us mad, flashes us with whips, crowns us with victory when we survive the impossible? Who is it that tells all these things?
(Note: All were working at the time of going to press)
Official Site: http://suckerpunchmovie.warnerbros.com/dvd/