Friday, March 25, 2011

I'll say this much for now...

...people really should get out to "Sucker Punch" this weekend.

I can't promise that everyone will "like" it; but it's the first "big" movie of 2011 that's actually worth talking about. It'll be making a lot of lists, stirring a lot of heated discussion, and being used as a baseline comparison A LOT as we head into Summer - so if nothing else you'll want to have an opinion on it.

32 comments:

Joe said...

Will it be typical Snyder: tonnes of style with little substance? Probably. But where else am I going to see a 20-foot tall metal samurai wielding a Gatling gun?

Hopefully this is the film that ends the "action films with female leads do poorly" mentality in Hollywood. I'm definitely there opening night.

Arturo said...

I've been thinking this film could be a more refined version of 300. With plenty of estrogen.

Still, this post gives me a (cautiously optimistic) good feeling about tomorrow...

Tim said...

You know, this is the same guy who after Other M was being called one of the biggest pieces of shit to be released last year, told everyone to go give it a chance. Now pretty much all of the critics are calling Sucker Punch abysmal and now Bob is telling everyone to give it a chance. You know what? Now I KNOW to avoid this movie. Especially since you overrated the hell out of Watchmen.

counterpoint said...

ok, totally looking forward to your review of this so you can tell me WHAT THE HECK IT IS.

Seriously, somehow I have remained completely ignorant about this movie. I see these billboards and I'm like "wow... looks interesting." But seriously, otherwise, totally under my radar. very very ridiculous.

Btw I should say you've pretty much never let me down. With the exception of a couple of films you thought were so-so that I actually enjoyed, your EttM recommendations have been a very good idea. Even the wife likes most of em.... now, I wonder if she'll let me netflix Pirahna 3d?

Aaron said...

I'm going to have to side with Tim on this one. I REALLY don't want to see this film do well and no one should encourage people to see a movie from the guy who royally fucked Watchmen and Dawn of the Dead up.

The Grey Man said...

Ok, I just got back from seeing it.

First, the bad:

The lead is bland. Not Sally Field bland, but bland enough. Some of the other girls were engaging enough, but not once did I ever REALLY care about her. All she does is make the same face, occasionally with her mouth slightly more open.

The ending is kind of bullshit.



Now the good:

There's never a sense that it doesn't really know what movie it's trying to be. There's a mish mash of different aesthetics, subculture obsessions, et cetera, yes, but the same sensibility permeates through all of them. They fit together just fine.

The action scenes are fun. Not amazing, never suspenseful, not necessarily exciting, but never boring either. Just fun. Ever watch those Dead Fantasy videos where the broads from different video games do crazy fight scenes? I got the same vibe off of the "Sucker Punch" action sequences.

The old mentor guy was good, I liked him.

I dug the soundtrack. No "99 Luftballons" or "Hallelujah" head-scratchers here. Even got a nice fight scene set to a Björk song.



Having said all that, I did also like "Watchmen" and "Dawn of the Dead." I didn't like "300," though, so I'm not just way into Snyder or anything. The movie is enjoyable. Nothing original, nothing innovative, nothing really shitty, just a fun way to spend 8-ish bucks and a couple hours. I'm sure it will be polarizing as hell, with a ton of people over praising it and just as many people overly harsh toward it, but as with most things like that, it's pretty much somewhere in the middle.


Joe pretty much summed it up. It's style, all caps, in bright neon letters with glitter thrown on them for some reason, no substance to be found whatsoever. The style's good enough, though.

Minic said...

No, Mr. Chipman. "Having an opinion" is not a good enough reason for me to give over money for what looks like a contrived, pandering, juvenile mess that exists solely to tick every box in the Internet's sophomoric list of "awesome". If anybody were to jump down my throat about not seeing it in theatres, I simply wouldn't want to know them.

Popcorn Dave said...

Sorry, Bob. I mostly like your film reviews but you always massively overrate anything that has hot chicks and geek culture in it. You can do a smart analysis of the latest crime thriller one week, then the next week someone releases a film where you get to see some boobs or there's a videogame reference and all you can do is shake us by the shoulders and shout "DUUUUUUUUDE you gotta see this movie I know it's not Oscar worthy but DUUUUUUUDE!". Unless it becomes TOO popular, and then you have to angrily denounce it as "pandering" (HAH!) like Transformers, or get snarky about how other people like it "too much", like The Dark Knight. It's actually kind of embarrassing.

Clayton said...

I wasn't interested in the first place. Snyder's track record is at best mixed, though I will say that the failings of the Watchmen movie were less about him more than film being a very bad fit for an adaptation (though I also argue that Wathcmen will forever be unfilmable).

akkuma420 said...

(sigh)Yea... It blows.
Didn't expect much and it didn't disappoint.
IMO.

Ryan said...

It's a bad sign when the most pandering, illogical 'splosion of 2011 is NOT in fact Transformers 3.

Ryan said...

Bob, whenever you come out and defend Zach Snyder, I'm reminded of something you said about Baz Luhrman back when Australia came out. You said that he "is one of those filmmakers who I like in principal even while despising most of his movies."

I have similar sentiments about Snyder, only I can't find anything about his whole filmmaking philosophy that I evenly mildly like. He seems like an okay guy, but his films have been extremely aggravating to me, and apparently to many film fans, for a long time now.

It's great you like him, but I think I'm going to have to take a rain check on this and wait until I don't have to pay to see this.

argryliberal said...

@Bob

Goddamn it, Bob! What are you trying to do? Be the next Armond White?

Q said...

You know what's your problem is, Bob? You fail to criticize in a vacuum.

You see it's perfectly alright to like a film that's generally hated or hate a film that generally liked, it's just that the way you criticize makes it seem like you're directly trying to antagonize those that don't agree with you. Which is alright and fun and all but it does kind of lead to this kind of backlash you see before you.

Sarge said...

Whenever Bob makes predictions about movies that will be big in the coming year, I remember his review of "Splice."

And what a shit-fest that movie was.

buzzkillinton said...

The amount of hate thrown up by the shortest of posts is staggering. Yes bob is a big nerd and blows his load over everything nerd cultured and that isnt wat everyone is looking for. if thats not the type of film you like then song come to his page go somewhere more aligned to your interests

ram said...

lol @ the complaints at watchmen, that movie had more style and substance then most flicks that come out these days.

J_Tracey said...

I saw it at a midnight show last night.

Pretty damn awful if you ask me. Bland characters, poorly set up action scenes and really no overall point to it.

The robot fight scene was cool, but not nearly enough to save the movie.

I'm pretty upset, because this could have been a really great and intelligent movie. It's ambitious in regards to putting this kind of idea on film, but it's just so badly executed that it ends being a lot of interesting pieces or filmmaking that don't gel together

Jonnyp555 said...

I don't know when it's out over here in the UK but I'm confident enough to judge the book by its cover, especially when non-student cinema prices are through the roof.

I mean it's nice to know that somebody's getting away with making 100% nerdsploitation movies, but they can still have substance. It doesn't have to be one or the other.

I do think the whole "it's like a video game" put-down is a little unfair though. There's plenty of linear films out there. Just because this one in nerdy to boot doesn't mean it has to be lumped into that category.

Popcorn Dave said...

"There's plenty of linear films out there."

Errr... all films are linear. ;)

Popcorn Dave said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Popcorn Dave said...

I have to admit, though, we have been getting a bit knee-jerk around here these past few months. Every time Bob posts something like this we all go "OH NO NOT THIS AGAIN!" before we've even finished reading it. At least this time he's recommending we go see it just because he thinks people are going to be talking about it, instead of just telling us we're idiots for not seeing it, so we should at least wait to see the full review before we say anything more.

Christopher said...

Saw it Wednesday night Bob, and I'm sorry but it's god-freaking-awful. Yes the fever dreams are fun. But they mean nothing so they are just dreams and there's no consequences to what's happening to them. But the script is pathetic, plot makes no damn sense, characters were flat, terrible soundtrack, so much DAMN SLOW-MO/SPEED-UP CRAP, and terrible cinematography. The film might be worth a rental, but I'm telling people to not waste their cash on this.

It baffles me as to why you like Snyder so much. 300 and Dawn of the Dead were fun, even the owl movie was decent. Watchmen was the first warning, and this is garbage. This is Snyder's Lady in the Water. And we are trusting him to do Superman. Looks like that will be his The Last Airbender.

Sarge said...

The problem with Movie Bob isn't that he doesn't review the movies he sees, he reviews the movies he WISHES he'd seen.

His review of Repo Men said it was really sick and violent and blood and that there was a surgery/computer hacking/sex scene.

His review of Splice said a) that it was smart and b) that people would be talking about it. He was wrong on both accounts.

His review of Red Riding Hood said that it was camp, and that it was worth watching, even hinting that it might be better than Twilight. Twilight, as a film, was awful, but RRH is worse on all accounts.

and it's not even camp.

Ezenwa said...

If the reviews are as true as I expect them to be, we better not count on Zack Snyder succeeding in doing any PG-13 films anymore. Or, at least, not doing anything without a good supporting crew of writers and producers. 300 was good with help from its creater, Frank Miller. Watchmen only had the help of Dave Gibbons as a creator, along with David Hayter and Alex Tse, fresh off of Superman Returns.

I'm not sure of this one just yet.

Oh, and Bob, what are your thoughts on The Adjustment Bureau?

Nick said...

Someone with "Dave" in his username actually ADMITTED that he's been too eager to attack Bob lately?

But in all seriousness. I can't see it this weekend because, well, I'm in a play... so I can't see it on opening weekend, which means my ticket won't get "counted" when the Hollywood bean-counters are deciding which movies were successful or not, but I'm still going to see it.

superuub1 said...

ah fudge really? I was just going to ignore this because well....I didn't like 300 and Watchmen was okay and great if you didn't read the comic but compared to the comic it's like one smurf Vs. Gargamel to the death. Smurf is going to get the one up on him here and there but in the end Smurf is not winning. and now off to look at my third review site for the deciding vote.

J_Tracey said...

@Sarge: I have to say, Repo Men and Red Riding Hood are both valid criticisms (although I like Repo Men), but Splice is an entirely different matter.

Splice is goddamn brilliant if you ask me. And although people aren't liking it, most critics ate it up for the same reasons Bob mentioned in his review. And I agree, Splice was easily last years best Sci-Fi film by far knocking Inception out of the park.

counterpoint said...

wow bob, they're really crucifying you here......

CraftyAndy said...

I'm always confused by these picky shits who think Snyder ruined watchmen I read the book a few months before the movie and almost all the dialogue was matched up. Some was switched for better affect, and some of the more grusome scenes amped up which gave a much better impact of Rorschach as a character then the book did. And yeah we couldn't have giant squid monster exploding in the city because that would require too much needless explanation that adds nothing. If anything he improved on the material if only balanced out by it's little short comings like Silk Specter. Anything else would of been generic action flare and you all know it.

Q said...

@ram

You don't watch that many films out of the mainstream, do you?

@CraftyAndy
Well, here the thing and it's kind of always been a thing about Watchman, and Alan Moore adaptations in general. Alan Moore comics are not like regular serial comic books where faithfulness is the most "important" thing a filmmaker has to get right. Moore's comics have depth, real and complex depth that Watchman the movie failed to match. The movie made its themes seem rather shallow and the style choice, while being refreshing in 300, seemed more like a glossy gimmick. "He matched the comic book" but what does that mean what does that do for it a serious piece of cinema. If done right it should have been at least as good as the Social Network.

Ásmundur said...

I have to say, I first got time to see Sucker Punch today and I can't really see why everybody hate it, I really am with Bob on this one...