What’s the best way to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Superman’s appearance? If you’re film director Zack Snyder, you put together this video celebrating the Man of Steel’s decades-long run.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: Institutionalized by her stepfather after her mother’s death, Baby Doll retreats into an alternate world which helps her devise a plan to escape.
PROS: Well, at one point I saw biplanes and zeppelins. That’s got to be a good thing, right?
CONS: Ridiculous action sequences, including repeated, pointless use of slow motion; quest looks and feels more like a videogame than a movie; slapdash mashup of images ripped off from multiple movie genres; overwrought soundtrack; fetishization of women; and, despite the presence of a number of actors, not one actual character.
Sucker Punch gives away its game before the end of its prologue. In a montage set to the background of Emily Browning’s cover of The Eurythmics’s “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This”), Baby Doll (also Browning, and yes, that’s her name) defends her sister from her stepfather’s advances after their mother’s death and winds up in an institution known as “The Lennox House.” This of course will mean nothing to anybody over the age of thirty, or who didn’t grow up in a box, but it shows exactly where director Zack Snyder’s mind is throughout the entire enterprise. (He also receives story credit, and co-wrote the screenplay with Steve Shibuya.) No need for those who think of anything that happened prior to Gulf War I is ancient history and can’t quite get the hang of Google to scratch their heads, I’ll explain: The Eurythmics’s lead singer was a platinum-haired woman named Annie Lennox. Snyder’s attempt at humor does not liven the events in a joyless movie but underscores his own lack of interest in making a film about adults or even human beings but instead creating a twelve-year-old boy’s adolescent fantasy about what women fantasize about.
BRIEF SYNOPSIS: The film is set in an alternate 1985, in which Nixon has remained in office far longer than two terms, the Doomsday clock is ticking ever closer to the fatal midnight mark…and super-heroes have been existing in the world for some time now. The story begins with the murder of one of them, The Comedian. The mystery of who hunts the Watchmen begins to be explored by Rorschach.
PROS: Gorgeous imagery, with scenes from the comic copied exactly. Also, a soundtrack that you can’t help but notice as it turns up throughout the film. Some of the most amazing opening credits out there.
CONS: Almost everything else. The acting is extremely dodgy at times. There is no emotion or context or explanation for what’s happening.
BOTTOM LINE: Since one has to read the comic to really get anything of interest out of the film, the film is little more than some brought-to-life panels. Interesting to look at, but it doesn’t have a leg to stand on.