“Sucker Punch” had major things going for and against it. The style of the film, much like the style of most Zack Snyder films, has love it or hate it. I tend to enjoy Snyder’s surreal style but if you don’t, chances are good that you will really hate this film. There is something very entertaining about watching the impossible come to life on screen and “Sucker Punch” certainly has it’s share of visually stunning moments.
The film plays out very much like a music video version of the film “Altered States”. This is the main flaw of the movie. The film’s ending (which I will not spoil) leaves certain aspects left up to the audience’s interpretation. The problem is, Snyder doesn’t really give the audience enough hints to make an educated guess regarding what really happened at the end. Sure, I have theories, but I can’t really back up any of those theories using aspects from the film. It really felt like a critical piece was left out of this film, and perhaps it was to secure a PG-13 rating. It’s also possible that the film just missed the mark. As a fan of films such as “Shutter Island” and “Inception”, I appreciate films that don’t spell out everything for the audience, but both films left clues to the audience to make a good (and probably correct) guess regarding how the main character’s journey ended. I wish I could say that was the case with “Sucker Punch” but it wasn’t.
The film also suffered from a lack of character development. The characters of Baby Doll, Sweet Pea and Rocket had a decent amount of development but the characters of Amber and Blondie ended up being severely underused. I wish Snyder had explored the motivations of Amber and Blondie more and why they decided to join in Baby Doll’s plan to escape despite the risks.
The acting in the film was quite good. Emily Browning proved she could headline a major motion picture with ease. That’s not an easy task for an actress that young. Abbie Cornish and Jena Malone were also very convincing in their roles. I wish Jamie Chung has been given a bigger role as Amber because she really made the most of her limited screen time. The great Scott Glenn really stole the show whenever he was on screen though. Glenn’s lines and delivery were some of the best in the film.
In the end, “Sucker Punch” was not a terrible movie, but it also wasn’t on par with Snyder’s previous films. It was heavy on the eye candy and light on the story. Still, I found the film to be enjoyable.
OVERALL GRADE: 6/10