I’ve only seen a few of Zack Snyder’s movies, and the few that I have seen have left me confused. Sucker Punch is just another of his movies that has done that. This is one movie I will most definitely buy the soundtrack for, the movie, not so much. In the opening, we see a blonde girl dressed in pink on a brass bed on a stage, and she is facing the wall. We get a quick history of why things are looking like they do. Rich woman dies, leaving her fortune to her two daughters. The estate is to go to the stepfather (Gerard Plunkett) if something happens to the girls. He is going to make sure it happens. The older sister, Baby Doll (Emily Browning), does everything to protect herself and her sister from this evil man whom was married to their mother, but ends up in a cruel fate, and loses the one thing she was trying to protect. Her stepfather sends her to a mental institution for young women to be rid of her. But is she really in an asylum, or has she been pawned off by a corrupt priest to a high security brothel?
Baby Doll wants nothing more than to escape the brothel, and she uses dance to escape further away from the reality within the other reality. Her dances are wild and varying, but we only see what is truly going on through her eyes. In one escape, she is the courtyard of a Shinto temple in winter. A wise monk (Scott Glenn) tells her what she will need to escape, but first she has to face the giant warriors in the temple. These are giant elemental warriors, and the only things she has to fight them with is a katana and her wits. The wise man tells her there are five things she needs to escape. A map, fire, a knife, a key, and one other thing, but she needs to figure out that for herself. I am not sure if we were supposed to notice the change in Baby Doll’s shoes from heels to flats, but I guess since it is her escape, she can wear whatever she wants. After her dance, she finds friends in four other girls in the brothel.
Rocket (Jena Malone), Sweet Pea (Abbie Cornish), Blondie (Vanessa Hudgens), and Amber (Jamie Chung). The madame that keeps the girls in line is Dr. Vera Gorski (Carla Gugino), and the whole operation is being run by a true scumbag, Blue Jones (Oscar Isaac). This little den of sin is designed for high rolling politicians and men in power. The dances and shows the girls perform are there to entice the clients into spending more money on the services and the things that go with them. Soon, we see Baby Doll using her dances to get the items from various men that either work at the club, or frequent it. The girls back her up as the get mesmerized by the dance and the world Baby Doll creates. We see her and the girls fighting in the trenches in WWI against the Kaiser’s undead, steampunk-powered forces. In another dance, they fight in a fantasy castle to slay a dragon and against orc-like creatures. In another, they are racing to save a city on another planet from a bomb on a runaway train. Each of these scenes are full of action and visually stunning, and with each dance, Baby Doll gets closer to her goal of getting herself and the other girls out.
There is just so much confusion going on here, it seems hard to believe the whole story is all in Baby Doll’s mind except for the fact that she is in the asylum. She is being very brave in her escape, but the result is just wrong, as wrong as the whole reason she was taken to there in the first place. I watched this movie because my son wanted to see it, and he was rather impressed by Baby Doll’s little Japanese schoolgirl outfit, but he was also a bit confused and disappointed. The eye candy just was not worth it. If you want a great CD for your collection, get the soundtrack, but unless you are a fan of Zack Snyder’s work, just leave this one alone.
I give this film a Musing review of