Review: Sucker Punch

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Genre: Action Fantasy
Directed by: Zack Snyder
Staring: Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Vanessa Hudgens, Jamie Chung, Carla Gugino
Released: March 25, 2011


Sucker Punch is an epic action fantasy that takes us into the vivid imagination of a young girl whose dream world provides the ultimate escape from her darker reality. Unrestrained by the boundaries of time and place, she is free to go where her mind takes her, but her incredible adventures blur the lines between what’s real and what is imaginary…with potentially tragic consequences.


The visuals for this movie are right in the standard I would expect from Snyder, and with all the trailers and sneak peeks we are just not disappointed with that. We knew what style it was going to be in and it delievers just that. A lot of amazing visuals and some damned hot girls to boot.

That’s all I have.


This movie relies far too much on the sexual. The girls are borderline softcore porn and while normally I wouldn’t be opposed to any of this, there is less substance to most of the characters which brings the hope that this particular softcore porn would be justified with solid storytelling.

The film had SO MUCH potential to deliver a story with deep characters and paralell visuals. However, it falls short settling on an interesting start and a visual roller coaster ride. It was too busy showing you the goods that it forgot it had a plot or depth of character. To escape we must fight, and we must fight in lingerie. Does she escape? What is real? Do they make me care? No.

I was waiting for the big reveal that resolves everything, tying the surreal to the real – waiting for the “sucker punch”… then I looked at my ticket stub and it hit me.


Lingerie, action, insanely delicious visuals are just not enough to make this movie “worthwhile” but it is sexy. Get a set of the posters instead.

This troubles me, but only briefly. Snyder’s track record was pretty solid til now so I won’t hang him after one sloppy film. He has done really well in other works, but even the great ones trip up sometimes.

I give Sucker Punch a 3 out of 10 because those girls are damned hot.

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41 thoughts on “Review: Sucker Punch

  1. I knew all along the film would be lacking in story and plot development. The whole movie was just an excuse to take all those really cool things that men love, throw them into a big pot, bring it to a boil, and hurl it on the theater patrons. Gritty World War 2 scenarios, nazis, big robots, dragons, giant samurais and of course sexy women in skimpy outfits. Do we still wanna see it? Sure! its 2 hours of action. But we won’t be going for the Oscar performances.

  2. I felt Sucker Punched after I left — and sucker being a pun, for the word should also be used in the “you went to see that? Sucker….” sense.

    There really wasn’t a story there — just a premise. It was an interesting premise, but that only makes the fact that it wasn’t developed all the more damning. There was nothing interesting about any of the girls, no depth to *any* of their characters. The action and graphics were anticlimactic, used poorly and, honestly, not up to par with what I’d expect from a Snyder film. The first 3/4 of the movie, with almost no dialog and moving with no rhyme or reason, felt more like an over-extended, high-priced music video — with bad music — than it did a movie.

    By the time anything actually happened, toward the end, it was too late for the film to be redeemed. Meanwhile, I’m actually shocked I was able to sit through the whole thing. My friend was huffing and puffing throughout the whole thing, obviously bored out of his mind, and when I whispered if he wanted to leave, he said no (he hated it, too, but didn’t want to leave out of principal), which bitterly disappointed me… even if usually I don’t like to leave theaters out of principal. I’ve just never been to see a movie that tedious and boring before. Worst. Movie. Ever.

    The sad thing is I really wanted to love it — who doesn’t love a good revenge tale? — and normally I like Girl Power films. I didn’t actually think the movie would be all that good — but at least I thought it would be so bad it was good. It wasn’t even that. No lines to laugh at. No campiness. Just bad — in the worst possible way: boring.

    Seriously — I find it pretty hard to hate a movie that much. I’ve found redeeming qualities in everything from Daredevil to Superman Returns to the MFing Last Airbender (!!), but there was *nothing* redeemable about this movie. It was just horrible in every sense of the word. Snyder should be ashamed.

  3. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and it was exactly, if not a little more, than I was expecting. My girl loved it, and after words was pen pointing which character she and several coworkers most closely would most relate to. And no, she is not in the slightest bit dry as people have found the characters to be. Yes, we are both in the over the age of thirty crowd. To each their own, though. I was a bit worried after reading all the bad reviews, so glad I did not listen to them and went to see it regardless. Next up, Hanna! Can that movie come out already?

    1. Honest question. How can you and your girl decide which character she and her friends most relate to? They had absolutely, positively no character development, save maybe Sweet P’s sister, and only Sweet P, her sister and the main character had anything even resembling any kind of back story at all (and very little at that). There was just nothing substantial to this film at all. I can’t possibly get how anyone could be enthusiastic about it. As you say, to each their own, I guess… but I honestly am curious.

      1. *yawn* the repetition of the no oh-noze-no-character-development continues. Heaven forbid that because one group of people can’t get anything out of something, that another group just might. Well, since you asked, my girl relates to the survivor. As she too has been through hell and back, and during that time she saw people close to her not make it out of that hell where she has been a lonely survivor. Then to be blessed by somebody that goes out of their way to help her without concern of where she came from… another thing she has experienced. Believe it or not, it is possible to get something out of a character that’s back story has not been presented. Kind of like reality… how often do you come along people in your life that you do not know their back story, yet you still manage to get to know somewhat who they are with just a little time spent with them? Sure, we don’t get a back story for most of the characters, but we get a pretty good idea of what they are like through their actions and involvement in the movie in the little time we get with them.

  4. “Babydoll” was traumatized from her mother’s and sister’s death. When someone gets traumatized they can invent ways to cope with their reality. She created the world of the Brothel. She also created a world within worlds as she was forced to danced, to help cope with her insecurities and stress. All of the scenes connected because the girls were searching for a particular item, and the scene was a surreal version of that.

    The script was a little painful sometimes, and I think that the acting was a bit dry, and Zack needs to learn how to direct his actors. He lucked out on Watchman, and 300, but these are young girls who still need more experience. I do think that Abbie Cornish and Carla Gugino were pretty solid, as well as the orderly(villian)

    At times, the movie’s plot acts like a distraction and takes away from some good character development, but otherwise, for an action movie, it is deeper and more thoughtful than most. I personally like the movie, others may disagree, but it was a total surprise to see something that I didn’t expect, which went more along the lines of a random action movie full of excess, and I ended up getting more of an art/action film.

    Overall I give the movie a 6/10

  5. I think Rodney meant “Soft Core” as being Hot babes IN hot outfits and making all the facial expressions that soft porn delivers and not actually “Porn”.

    Dissapointing news, Now on to Superman

  6. This film was a farse. it has so much potential, but never I never have a connection with any of the leading characters; for me the best character was the guy who give the girls thier mission the bus driver at the end.
    This is not a film is a collection of scenes trying to fit together. what was the point of 3 different realities without connection.
    One of teh worst film I ever saw in my life

    1. Uh, their connection was that they were each a separate mission to get one of the four needed items. One girl goes for item, and Baby Girl creates a surreal journey in her head to accomplish it. That clear things up for you?

      1. That didn’t actually answer the question. He asked what was the *point*, and you answered “what happened?” Those are two very different things.

      2. Actually his question was “what was the point of 3 different realities without connection.” I pointed out that there is a connection to the three different stories. Not to mention the end of the movie then ties them all into reality. If you want to take it deeper to what was the point of why she chose such surreal settings to go to, then the argument can be answered with “why not?” Why does anybody think up what they do in their heads? Cause we can.

    2. That was my impression. It was a 2+ hour music video, with bad music. There was very little difference in the development of the ‘revenge’ story in this film compared to the Lady Gaga / Beyonce extended music video from a while ago. If anything, that one pulled me in more than this movie.

  7. I Think Rodney was too harsh in his review. Sucker Punch is way far from being the best film of 2011, has very slim acting talent, and CGI eye candy made up 85% of the movie. However, in this day and age where hollywood rewards lack of creativity and where almost every film that comes out is either the fourth or fifth instalment in a movie franchise or a remake of a great 70’s flick, Sucker Punch to me was a breath of fresh air.

    This movie was original and very unconventional by Hollywood standards. It was written by Zach Snder himself. Although the trailers sold us some kind of girly action flick for teenage girls, it was very different from what I expected. There was no romantic subplot what so ever, with no good looking 19 year old romantic lead or twilighter kid popping up to save the girls and no comic relief (As per my knowledge, these are part of the hollywood standards for blockbusters today). Beneath the awsome imaginary action sequences, lies a dark, gritty and sad psycho drama at the core, about a group of young women finding strenth, courage and hope under brutal circumstances and the constant threat of sexual abuse…and yes the concept was poorly excecuted, but at least Mr. Snyder tried.

    Given the lack of interest for original ideas by big studios like Warner Bros, the uncofortable subject matter beneath the eye candy CGI action sequences and its uncoventional nature, its an achievemnt for Zach Snyder to have this film done and a movie worth seing.

    1. “It was written by Zach Snder himself.”

      Therein lies the problem, or at least most of it. With a better script this movie could have at least been different, but it was DOOMED from the start.

      As for being “very different” and “unconventional,” it’s “unconventional” in a cheese-whiz way. Fake ‘different and unconventional.’ It’s just a bunch of shameless action scenes — that are as boring as all hell — set up with a girl who says she’s going to dance (you never actually see her dance). If the action sequences — the metaphorical — were interspersed with what was actually going on, and choreographed to actually have meaning, then maybe it would have been unique and unconventional. Instead, it was just lazy.

      “Beneath the awsome imaginary action sequences, lies a dark, gritty and sad psycho drama at the core, about a group of young women finding strenth, courage and hope under brutal circumstances and the constant threat of sexual abuse”

      No, that was the *premise* of the movie. It was *never* followed up on. You later went on to say it was poorly executed. That wasn’t the problem — a poorly executed movie could at least be so bad it could be good. No, the problem was much worse: there was no execution at all. A premise was introduced in the beginning of the movie, never developed, and audiences go from one dream-action sequence to the next, without any real rhyme or reason to them. And then the movie ends.

      “Given the lack of interest for original ideas by big studios”

      I bitterly reject this notion — in the year of The King’s Speech, The Social Network, The Town and a whole bunch of interesting and good // non CGI type films, that’s just really not true anymore. And even the big explosion/CGI type films — at least those that have been praised by audiences and critics alike — have become smarter and better films, whether it’s the Batman films or the Marvel studio films. Zach Snyder had every opportunity here to do his own thing, including write his own script, but put out a lazy and stunningly boring stinker with absolutely no redeeming qualities in the actual film itself (and no, a premise is not a quality in the film itself if it’s never executed on).

  8. Ok, who really thought this was going to be good? I know I didn’t. I knew this would have no story because Zack is a visual director not a storyteller. Hell…even with the holy grail of comic miniseries (Watchmen) he made a movie that was inconsistent. Watchmen had moments of blandness sprinkled with moments of genius. 300 was all eye candy, the story had no real weight and was background noise for the well oiled ripped men and scandily clad women. Synder’s track record has always been this way. I don’t consider him a great director, he’s a decent director. He has yet to pull a great performance out of an actor. He reminds me of George Lucas in this regard. We’ll have to wait to see what he does with Superman. I don’t have my hopes up though.

    1. It was amazing how boring the action was. I wouldn’t have thought it was possible, but you’re right — it was the most boring part of the movie (and there were a lot of boring parts).

    2. I was, it was like they showed up shot some guys and left. The shakey cam didn’t help matters cause you couldn’t see what the hell was happening. The steampunk Nazi part was the best to me but again shakey cam drew me out again.

      Also I think I was going to bang my head in the wall if I saw the stupid jump landing anime pose again, everytime they jumped they landed in that pose. Works in anime, live action not so much.

      All in all this was a big letdown for me, I had been keeping up with the movie since I first heard about it was hopeing for epic and all I got was eye candy.

      1. Jump Landing Anime Pose? Since when does Anime get credit for that shit.
        Thats “Invincible” Ironmans pose bro. give credit where credits due! LOL

  9. I saw the movie laste night, I think the movie had a great deal of art mixed with action, I do not agree that the movie was sexual. At no time in the movie did I see a soft core porn. Yes the woman were sexy but that is about all. I think if you are into artsy fimls and action films you will find a great balance. My opinon I restpect all others. Just though I would throw it out there.

    1. i share the same view as IronDoomFist. I’ve seen softcore pron and that was -not- softcore porn. I did get a artsy feel of it right away from the start (besides knowing about the awesome visuals).Lots of symbolism was used, and like a dream it is up to the viewer to decode it.

    2. Thank you Ironfist, you’re 2 sense has compelled me to still give the movie a chance, and not jump on the movie blog ban wagon. In the past I’ve been guilty of letting decent movies roll past cuz the of TMB review only to find out on video that I enjoyed the flick. Maybe the critics should mellow out a bit, but you’re right everyones allowed their own opinion which we gotta respect, but as for the “soft core porn” comment I doubt any pg 13 movie would be so racy even if the girls are wearing skimpy outfits. Do us a favor Movie Blog subscribe to show time and cinamax and review Lord of the G Strings and The Devil Wears Nada, and the we can discuss soft core porn ;)

      1. A review is just an opinion. No one is on a bandwagon.

        I am flattered that you have allowed my personal opinion on films decide for you. I will never begrudge someone who enjoys a film I do not, just as I would not hold it against you for hating a film I liked.

        My “softcore porn” statement is valid. Just because their are racier shows that deal with more graphic material, doesn’t mean that this PG13 movie wasn’t filled with scenes in a whore house and girls in lingerie.

      2. So then in that state of thought, that would make The Best Little Whore House in Texas and The Cheyenne Social Club both softcore porns… as they both are about whore houses and involve girls in lingerie. Sorry, no way. Let us not leave out Pretty Woman, a movie about a whore who is seen in less than lingerie! Oh Julia Roberts, you softcore porn star, you. I think I will hold to the definition that makes more sense, which doing some research seems to be more fitting to my idea than yours… the inclusion of the word softcore, or hardcore, before porn entails the degree of display in relation to copulation (aka. the sexual act). Where the lighter side spends more time implying that act, while the harder version is explicit in displaying the act. It might be safe to say the movie was pornographic, as it is meant to be a form of eroticism while displaying the ladies in skimpy clothes, but that is such a loose interpretation that even something like Bay Watch could be considered pornographic then. Even then, I would expect that to mean they were trying to get me aroused in the display of such imagery, but I was did not find myself aroused once. Sure I might of thought, “oh, she looks pretty hot there,” but that is far and away from what porn is supposed to do. My two cents, and always fun to see how different people interpret things. My girl got a good laugh at the idea of Sucker Punch being full of softcore porn as well.

    3. I love arty films, but this was not one of them. I felt as though, early on when building the concept of the film, the *idea* of using dance and different ‘realities’ for the film to exist in may have been thought forward, but then all that was given up in favor of pointless explosions. Again, there was a premise here, but it wasn’t followed up on. And it’s a shame, because the premise was good, even if *everything else* was horrific (save perhaps Jena Malone in the movie).

  10. This movie looked amazing in all the previews, but I knew it was going to be a disappointment. Still can’t wait to see what he does with superman.

    1. Truth be told I was never thrilled about Snyder doing Superman. I loved Dawn of the Dead, Ok with 300, didn’t care for Watchmen, and as of yesterday hated Sucker Punch. Seems like a downward spiral to me, if he directs Superman it will probably go straight to DVD or premier on the SciFi channel.

      1. Rodney you should know best that the word ‘Is’ is always used but things can change. Think of all the actors/directors that were confirmed in the past only to be dumped/fired/different vision/only used for consulting/scheduling conflicts.

        Do I think Snyder’s Superman will go direct to DVD, NO. I just think that his quality of work has been on a downward spiral IMHO.

      2. Lets not forget that Chris Nolan wrote the story, as bad as Suckerpunch may be it didn’t have Nolan attached as Writer, I have all of the confidence that Superman will kick ass…

      3. Nolan did not write Superman: Man of Steel.

        It was written by David S Goyer – who wrote Nolan’s Batman films (even the new one coming) as well as the Blade films.

        Nolan “Godfathered” the Superman reboot, offering some guidance, but once his input was heard he left the project. He was more of a consultant. Considering his success with the genre he was asked to help out, but he did not write the script.

      4. Hey Rodney, wasn’t Goyer assisted by Chris Nolan and also Nolan’s brother? I thought All three had a hand in the writing duties with Goyer being the central figure. Maybe Goyer wrote the first drafts and they all came together to tighten it up. Not sure though.

  11. I think it could have been three really good movies
    The girl who is sent in the nut house and is abused
    The girls trapped in the whore house
    The Anime style film

    If I got three whole movies out if this, I think I would have been satisfied. All stories were intersting and I wanted to see more, just not during one film.

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