VIDEO: Sucker Punch (2011)

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Exploitation? Robots? Kung-fu? Guns? Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Vanessa Hudgens, and Jamie Chung in sexy outfits? Normally, those would all be ingredients for the perfect movie, but when Zack Snyder is the chef, the only thing being served is a shit sandwich called Sucker Punch. Watch as Johnny chokes down the whole thing.

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  • John Wilson

    This movie was on my top ten list of 2011. You know why because I like it.You know why because it was different. Well I mean different in a way I like. You know why Baby doll not Bellatrix. Because its two different characters. Baby doll came come from a bad life. All the girls came from a bad life. That why they act like they do. And The special effects. They are amazing(well to me anyways). This movie made for people who like David Lynch type movies. Its basically a big budget David Lynch movie. And in David Lynch movies. Reality and fantasy come together in a way that as the movie goes on,they start to effect each other.
                This movie wasn’t made for you. I know that what people say when they are being”high class” but its true. It such a unique experience that everyone will get something different out of it. Just because you don’t like it. Everyone has the same option. This movie should be seen by people. Because everyone will get something different out of it. The reason it barely broke even is,its hard to get people to go to movies like this. Where the story up to interpolation. Inception decide to go the action movie route and explain everything. And people still got confused. But it was a action movie so they went along with it. This movie is many genres. That why people didn’t like it.            Now you have your option and understand where your coming from(kind of). But I think you should watch it again. This time maybe with a more open mind. And If you still dislike it. Well good for you. Its nice to have really different options for arts.            
    For the people who didn’t see it. See it. Who knows maybe you might like it. And maybe watch it again to see if you still have the same option. Thanks and have a nice day:).

    • Nevillerikard

      This movie isn’t nearly deep enough for the phrase “not made for you” to apply. It’s an effects-driven action movie; there’s nothing deep about it. If Snyder had dropped the connecting material and added more vignettes, it would have been a silly, fun action movie. That was all I was looking to see when I saw the trailer for this.

      The attempts at depth are just eye-rolling in their blandness. The Matrix did a better job, and it was much the same simplistic battle-cry of “Freedom!!!” as is put forth here. I imagine Snyder intended this to be his Matrix, and he didn’t succeed.

      Also, there’s been a big-budget David Lynch movie, Dune.

      • John Wilson

        When I say its not made for you.I’m not saying it deep. I’m saying its made for certain people. You ,like many other people were expecting a simple action movie. But the movie trun out to be more like Bridge to Terabithia,meets The matrix,meets Inception. The message is not a simplistic cry of freedom its about dealing with things in your life,and the nature of reality in fiction. Yes I know there was w big budget Lynch movie.I’m talking   
        about his later movies(Inland empire,Mohallod dr,etc)about dreams.

                  If you can or want to. Try watching it again,knowing what the movie really about. Who knows,you might jst like it :).

        • CDiehl

          You are in fact trying to say it’s deep, because you are trying to claim this movie has any kind of message. I saw it when it came out, I paid good money to see it in a theatre, and I can tell you that it is in no way intelligent or deep. It isn’t about anything but a group of attractive, scantily-clad young women fighting in over-the-top CGI environments. If the movie had stuck to being that from start to finish, it would have been amazing. The connecting material, and the attempt to have a plot or message beyond what I just described, failed miserably. It is not about dealing with one’s life, because the main characters do the exact opposite by retreating into some adolescent fantasy world whenever they’re confronted by adversity. It is also not about “the nature of reality in fiction”, because the movie’s real world (where the main characters are basically slaves) and its fantastical world (where they kick ass on fantastical beings) are very clearly delineated.

          I have no interest in watching this movie again, let alone at your suggestion. I’d watch the action scenes again, because those are entertaining, but the main plot sucks and drags down the action scenes. I have even less desire to watch it while pretending that it’s about the things you think it’s about, because I know it isn’t about them. I guess you actually learned one thing from this movie, that anything is tolerable if you pretend it’s something else, but I don’t care to pretend this is a David Lynch movie when I know it’s basically 300 with girls.

  • Muthsarah

    I haven’t seen this movie (though I’ve seen more than 2 hours’ worth of reviews of it), so I can’t comment on it direction, but I thought MovieBob had a pretty good dissenting review on it a couple months ago.  Every other review I’ve seen ripped the movie to pieces for being incoherent fanservice, so it was fun to watch a detailed qualified-positive review based on a surprising deep theory on what the movie was intended to be about.  It’s the kind of nerd-analysis that I like best:

    P.S. Bitchy McGee, siphylitic slut, Slutty McShorthair, whore heaven, self-absorbed slut, bitch, C**ty McGee.  The characters you’re describing (though fictional) are teenaged sex slaves trying to escape their captors, most of them dying in the effort.  I think you can be a lil’ classier in your descriptions of them.

    • John Sco

      Wait, you haven’t see the movie, but you think that MovieBob had a pretty good dissertation on it? That does not compute.

      Listen man, the story was not deep at all. Snyder had to do a shit ton of back peddling in interviews after it was released, and the only semblance of depth it has comes from the story he tried to weave around it after the fact to avoid having his career further destroyed. As for MovieBob, I’ve never seen someone reach so much. I can only assume he was trying to impress some chick.

      That said, this review of mine basically sucked. I hate it. I’m slow paced, low energy, and wooden. This was back from when I was still getting used to being on camera, and it shows.

      • Muthsarah

        I watch far more recent film reviews than recent films (it helps that they’re shorter and free).  I don’t have to have seen the film being reviewed to enjoy the review and think it was well-done.  I never said I agreed with Bob (I can’t in this case), just that I liked that he had a rare contrary opinion and a detailed argument, one that does address a lot of the points you raised.  I like any detailed analysis of nerd ephemera, regardless of the work it’s delving into or the position it’s taking, provided it has some entertainment value.

        Aside from the tone going into questionable areas, I liked this review as well.  The “slow pace” helped, since it allowed you to cover a lot of the material without just zipping through it and making the same two or three comments everyone else has been making (big video game, misogyny, dance makes no sense)

      • Sofie Liv

         well.. it’s still better explanation than what David Lynch usually gives. he is absolutely just like.

        “Haha, no, figure it out yourself, I am not supposed to tell you a thing!”

      • John Wilson

        Reach? Moviebob going into the themes. Yes,movies are about things not related to the movie.  Snyder does well in his movies. But unlike Nolan,he try to be different. Nolan a director that makes “deep films” for a big audience. Snyder makes movies for whoever he wants. 

  • Delawheredad

    Great review of a real misogynist movie. One of the many  real crimes of this film is that Zack Snyder tried to claim that it was a film about female empowerment when its as exploitative in its own way as the worst excesses of porno films! Kill Bill by contrast  is real female empowerment. The sad thing is that despite it being a flop Hollywood will insist that the problem is not the elements of this film that were  bad but how they weree arraigned that is the problem. Some studio will give Zack Snyder even more money in the future to make another movie as bad as this. The only way to get yours career as a director killed in Hollywood is by bankrupting your studio a la Michael Cimino.       

    • Sofie Liv

       How is Kill Bill female empowerment? by having a super-soldier female samurai whom can kick every-body elses asses as if it was a game?

      How does that tell women. “Ya know, you are all-right just being women, don’t change.” it’s just another super-powered women whom get the mark of “female empowerment.” because.. she is a super soldier.

      Well, that movie does some-thing good about having several female characters that actually are interesting characters, I don’t deny that, but female empowerment? .. not.. really.

      I’m just a little bit tired of people going. “See, she has a gun! she can beat all the men, EMPOWERMENT!”… no, empowerment is over-coming obsticles that were difficult for the character over-come in the first place, either because of personal flaws or the way society works.

      • Calum Syers

        I’m a fan of Kill Bill, but I do have to agree that while it’s a cool exploitation-dobule bill, doesn’t mean it’s automatically feminist and it’s definitely not empowering, because The Bride simply kicks too much ass… if that makes sense.

        I mean, sure, it does several things right. Both passes the Bechdel test and The Bride and several other characters are fleshed out JUST ENOUGH to not be 2-dimensional (at least for me). But those things alone do not a feminist empowerment tale make.

        The way that the sexes are portrayed in genre cinema has been a fascination for me for a while, and just because a flat, boring character lacking in characterisation (such as the lead in Haywire) has a gun and kicks ass, doesn’t mean it’s empowering or does squat for feminism. I’ve also been steeped in this stuff for a while, because me and my bro are about to write a TV pilot for a sci-fi/Western, and we’re trying hard to avoid the particular trap of: “Look, she’s got a gun and kicks ass! SEE, FEMINISM, RIGHT?” The character DOES have a gun, and her profession as a Marshall means she also has a gun, but we’re coming up with plenty of ideas on why that alone is not her entire character.

        Phew, long spiel over. 

        • Sofie Liv

           Why do you even have to go out of your way to do “female empowerment.” .. wouldn’t it be nice with just one movie going.

          “yeah, we have women characters, but screw that female empowerment shit, we are just concentrating on writing a story here.”

          Wanting to have “female empowerment.” present in your movie is actually only hurting the female characters at this point… just.. drop it. 

          And well, you can absolutely have an interesting female Marshmal, all you need to do is make her a character and acknolwdge her design flaws as a person.
          Maybe she is a bit to tought on the town having to always face up to men whom are not taking her seriously, forcing her into taking pretty strict rash decisions?
          Maybe it’s the opposite, maybe she’s a slob whom had it with it all and have gotten a drinking problem.
          Maybe she is actually an idealist wanting the best for the town, but you know about the trouble with big idealists? they will always be called out on it and get into some kind of trouble a bit to deep because they go intead action, based on their big ideals, before thinking things entirely through. These people are often very good people, but ends up in trouble and most learn to grow up, and actually quite enjoyable characters.
          Maybe she’s slightly insane and likes to frigthen men with her gun for fun? all valid options. only the sky is the limit.

          • Calum Syers

            I agree. “Female empowerment” has gotten to the point where it sounds somewhat condescending, or like a marketing idea. Much like “girl power” did in the 90s.

            Also, I think I must have put my point across poorly in my last message. When I said “avoiding the trap”, I didn’t mean I’m going to go out of my way to make it about empowerment. Just try to make the best damn sci-fi/Western out there.

            It’s interesting that you should say “too tough” and “rash decisions”, because that’s kind of the route we’re taking. In the back story, the planet they lived on went through a war (based on the American Civil War), and she was a captain of one of the brigades. During the war’s final battle, due to being cornered and overly head strong, she made a rash decision which got over half of her platoon killed. Even though her side (barely) won, there are many who won’t forgive her. Due to this, and sheer resentment, she isolates herself, with only very few people she’d call friends. She looks out for number one, sometimes at the expense of others. Like convincing a group of drunk miners to charge at a group of people trying to kill her, so that she can escape. So long as she gets paid, then who cares.

            All of which is questioned when the few people she does care for are hurt.

            Which is the basic characterisation so far, but by no means the final product. When pen is put to paper things will become a little more rounded.

            Also, thanks for the advice and ideas. It’s been really helpful and we seem to be on the same page. Again, thanks.

      • John Wilson

        You hit the nail on the head. I remember the guy who direct Hanna saying “This is how you direct a female film,not like Sucker Punch”(or something like that). And you know what Hanna turned out to be,the same as all the other female action movie. That why Sucker punch so great. We get real women,who are flawed,get scared,etc. A happy ending is a ending that should make you be happy for the characters. Not just to end the story. Sucker punch(even how bittersweet it is) still felt like a happy ending. 

        • Sofie Liv

          Well… yeah.. it’s hard to describe without sounding like a whiny helpless bastard, but.. on many occasions being a woman is scary.

          We have a genneral rule that says.
          “Never ever go to town alone late at night, it’s a bad idea.”
          Why do we have that rule? .. well.. because it genuinly is neccesary. When I walked around late at night in London city last summer, I genuinly felt relief having my good friend Christian with me, cause then I was sure to be left alone.

          So why are movie afraid of dealing with these aspects? and let women over-come their problems, not by being physically stronger, but learning and becoming smarter?

          For me, true empowerment will always be to over-come your own flaws and over-come real life obstacles to archieve a goal or.. just move on in life. Male or female empowerment. So unless a movie deals with a woman doing just that, I wont call it female empowerment.

          Now, Sucker Punch is a movie about a girl using the tool that she has, as a woman,  to over-come immediate obstacles, she learns doing the cause of the movie because she fails, but also over-comes her failure, so yeah.. that is arguable empowerment.
          How-ever, for her plan to even work in the first place, would require all men in the movie to be stupid sex fixated pigs.. which apparently they are. So ones again, this movie is offensive to males not females.

          • John Wilson

            Man, women be cray. Movies that deal with what you talking about, barley break even. Twilight or 50 shades of grey,overtake Harry Potter.Plus movies like this are done by mostly men. Twilight and 50 shades are written by women.(‘-‘).All well:)

          • Sofie Liv

             there’s been no clever writers dealing with it in any clever mainstream movies and they never even try to make that aspect present in the big mainstream things because the woman must be an “Strong independet woman.” which is rarely instersting.

             stupidity does not require a gender.
            The stupid women and there are stupid men, and obviously twilight and fifty shades weren’t written by the smartest of women -_-;

            But oh well, maybe they have actually opened the gate-way to more female orianted movies, which will eventually become smart.. maybe some-day they will spur a really smart main-stream female orianted movie or book that becomes a hit, who knows.

    • Tony

      Are you actually suggesting it flopped because it wasn’t sufficiently “feminist”?
      Let me tell you, this movie sucks big time not because it’s “misogynist” but because it is loud, emptyheaded, boring and refuses to end. It could have come from Michael Bay.

  • Sofie Liv

    Erh.. well.. I erhm.. erhm.. kind of.. sort of.. like this movie (hides behind the couch.)

    I’ve seen it twice, the first time yeah, it was hard for me to understand, but I was fascinated with the atmopshere and some of the ideas regardless, then I saw it twice, and the movie was much more understandable to me.. but yeah, it kind of requires for you to be willing to play along with the movies “Dream rules.”

    Cool thing about dream rules, you can do what-ever the hell you like with it and say. “Well, dream.” it’s kind of the plot-hole from To Boldly flee all over again, the bad thing.. a lot of people can become annoyed at it, and it’s an easy way to have, well, lazy writing. But I don’t think this is, there’s a lot of subtletees lurking beneaht the surface, small hints and ideas.

    So Sweet pea was the true heroine of the story huh? the voice of reason whom all along said. “This is dumb! you know that right? it’s dumb and disgusting.” the one caring about her sister, is always the most fully dressed and is a, good person.. hmm.

    Also.. really like the look of the movie and the atmopshere. I can’t hate it, I’m so sorry! D: 

    • I’m with you, I actually think it’s a quite excellent film. It’s not perfect, there are definitely some pacing issues, but those who think this movie is misogynist are completely missing the point. They fail to realize that the movie isn’t trying to “empower” women, it’s spotlighting the exploitation and marginalization of women.

      • Sofie Liv

        I also think it’s weird so many people are saying. “Why is this so degrading towards women? it’s totally offensive towards women!”

        please note, most poeple saying that… are men.

        And if this movie is offensive to any gender, it’s god damn offensive to males! not the women, the males!

        The women in this movie, are all people whom has against the will been put into a very compromising situation.. by males! The women are the innocent, even the smart ones, while the males are disgusting, stupid, childish, power hungry and just all around terrible human beings.

        I’ll say, all men has the right to say this movie is offensive to the male gender! it arguable is.. I don’t really see it as that offensive towards women really.. so we are attractive? okay nice, so we can use our good looks to blind the men to our true intention and there-by trick them? again, that’s offensive to the men not the women, that these men can’t think as far that these women might be silently rebelling… well, that genuinly is kind of dumb.

  • Pratchettgaiman

    If I remember correctly, they had a brief montage of her experiences in the asylum before she gets put into the chair, and it’s implied that she does what Carla Gugino claim she does at the end, which she then fantasizes as the plot of the rest of the movie. Not that that isn’t overly complicated and stupid, and it still doesn’t make much sense, but it’s not completely nonsensical    

  • Carlostrivas

    message to studio executive on Zach Snyder: give his an amazing and he will make look awesome, give him a crap one and you get, Suckerpunch!

  • John Sco

    Just so everyone knows, yes, I realize this review is poorly paced, and basically sucks. I made this quite awhile ago. 

    Just bear with me folks. My recent stuff is actually watchable, and my next proper project will be out soon. I just have a whole sh** ton of stuff to deal with in my life right now, and am waiting to get back on my feet. After I move and I’m all set up again, I’ll be going back to getting out one decent project every month or so. 

    God do I ever hate watching my old stuff. Well, at least that means I know I’m making progress.

    • Phazer8472

      Maybe I’m just being a sycophant, but I honestly didn’t see anything wrong with it, heh.

      • Believe me, a mic – even a cheap one – will make a world of difference in audio quality. This video sounded tinny, echo-y, and hollow. 

        • John Sco

          Oh I know man. And the lighting is shit too. *chuckles* In the videos I made after this, I hung blankets from the ceiling over three of the four walls in my room. Combined with a filter which removes background noise, that has improved my sound quality ten fold.

          As for lighting, I got two 500watt studio lights and bounce them off the corners of the room. I spent an hour working with some color correction filters to make a template to use in the future. It fixes the washed out green color completely.
          Amazing at how much you can improve your quality without spending much money.

    • I hope you get a microphone next time dude, Cripes, did that sound horrible. Good review, though. Agree 100%

    •  Honestly, I thought this review was great! 

      I guess the only problem I have would be the length of it.  It can be hard to find 30 minutes to spare to watch a review sometimes.  But then you couldn’t work in as many jokes as you did if it was shorter.  I guess you can’t have everything!

  • Tony

    “Killer Klowns From Outer Space” was much better than this, so if anything the reason the writing sucks is likely to be Zach Snyder.
    Dawn of the Dead was a remake with some changes.
    300 is based on a story that already existed.
    Watchmen was basically adapted screen for screen from a comic book.
    Suckerpunch was completely original, and lo and behold, it sucks.

  • Sand Ripper

    This movie always looked really bad to me.

  • I am sooo writting stuff with a plot dice from now on XD

  • Thomas Stockel

    I hated this movie.

    However, I loved this review.  It pretty much nailed everything I disliked about the film.  All style, no substance, thank god there will be no sequel.

  • Reifgrimm

    You know, I can make the connection between layer one and layer two of the narrative. I can even make one between two and three, patronising as Babydoll’s fantasies may be.

    However, having a layer one, and a layer two, and layer a three – two-thirds of which are essentially pointless, and one perhaps even downright stupid – well, I have a hard time trusting what was presented as the basic premise of the movie, i.e. poor Babydoll being set up by her evil stepfather. I have a hard time feeling for her, since I can’t really trust what I think I know about her. Even something as horrible and intrusive as a lobotomy leaves no scratch, no trace. It might as well not have happened at all.

    Is there such a thing as pulling an inadvertent inception..?

  • Goblin1001

    IF the base line “reality” of the story had had more of a sense of realism and believability, and the fantasies had resembled in any way a GIRLS and not a teen age BOYS, this might have been a good idea.  As it was, it’s the ultimate example of style over substance.

    • Well, I dunno, I think of robot Nazis before I think of…giant Barbie dolls with lasers shooting out of their eyes or whatever a girl is “supposed” to think of as something to kill. 😉 Not saying it’s a good movie, but I don’t think that’s a valid point.

  • Well…no comment on the movie, because it looks like an incoherant mess that’s just stupid enough for me to enjoy despite it being stupid, but I do have a comment on the movie’s title. Perhaps “Sucker Punch” is supposed to refer to the audience being sucker punched by the story in the end, where she was lobotomized after all?

    Something else does occur to me. This is also wild speculation since, like I said, I haven’t seen the movie, but is there room for stuff to have happened between Baby Doll arriving at the asylum and her being lobotomized? Perhaps she was supposed to have been reliving starting a fire and stabbing someone, etc., just before she was lobotomized.

  • My theory is that Baby Doll had already been operated on before the beginning of this movie and what we are watching is the distorted delusions of a mind damaged by an ice pick lobotomy.

  • CaptainCalvinCat

    Sorry, I disagree with you, Johnny.

    Just the fact, that a movie is directed by a certain director doesn’t make it good automatically.

    There are movies out there, that prove it – for example: any movie made by M. Night Sh. starting with “The Happening”.

    And just because you like the works of Tarrantino, that doesn’t mean, that they are “good”.

    I for my part watched three movies, done by him (reservoir Dogs, Pulp Fiction and Deathproof) and thought that, while being not the worst of them all, Tarrantino as a storyteller is overrated.

    So – your argument, that Kill Bill is better than Sucker Punch is not really an argument.

    It just shows, that you like movies done by Tarrantino and are willing to cut him much more leeway.

    And reading the posts of Sofie Liv here, I can’t help, but to agree with her.
    Plus: You say, that this movie is so partronizing… where?
    Where is this movie patronizing?