‘Sin City: A Dame to Kill For’ Movie Review – For the Guys
Back in 2005, Frank Miller’s dark work was brought to the big screen in a critically-acclaimed way. I was admittedly not a huge fan of the film at the time (although that has changed a little over time) and I can point to the violence as the main reason. I’m not a chicken when it comes to violence but I don’t care for it when it’s practically all a movie has to offer. Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez’s follow-up, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, does sprinkle in some story to go with the violence but it certainly isn’t their main concern. It comes down to a matter of taste, but given the subtle digs on the female gender (whether intentional or not), this movie certainly caters to one demographic.
Just like its predecessor, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For isn’t one continuous story. Instead, it is broken down into sections (this time around, there are just four). Two of them (“Just Another Saturday Night” and “Nancy’s Last Dance”) deal directly with the events of the first movie. The others (“A Long Bad Night” and “A Dame to Kill For”) have a slight connection but introduce different characters (played by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Josh Brolin, Eva Green, and more) altogether to give the movie a fresher feel.
Personally, I was more invested in the stuff that carried over from Sin City. These subplots deal a lot with redemption, given what had happened beforehand, and come to a more satisfying conclusion.
On the other hand, “A Dame to Kill For” (which seems like the most standalone of the bunch) gives people the opportunity to see something entirely different. This is a rare film where you can just keep watching and hope you get something you’ll eventually like. Ultimately, I find the movie to feel disjointed but when has this franchise ever tried to be conventional?
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For has unconventional going for it. Besides what I just brought up, Miller and Rodriguez implore a unique comic book style to create something wholly different. If you thought a movie like 300 (another Frank Miller-inspired movie) seemed stylized, you’ve got something else coming.
It has to be bothersome to viewers that there’s an inconsistent color palette and extremely heady voiceover. But I can also understand how this goes right into the style they’re going for. When it comes to Hollywood productions, I tend to favor movies that take a chance or try something different. Therefore, I can’t knock either Sin City or its sequel for the attempt.
I can, though, jump on the film for how it treats women. I will admit that my thoughts changed slightly by the conclusion, but I have to go back to the “A Dame to Kill For” for my evidence. Ava Lord (Green) is overly-sexualized (which probably plays right into the male demographic going to this movie in the first place) and given a character that won’t sit well with even the slightest of feminists.
I wouldn’t consider myself someone that overtly notices gender stereotypes but it’s certainly something Hollywood needs to be conscious of. I don’t think this film exhibits that consciousness.
Before I set out for Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, I made sure to re-visit the original Sin City. I was surprised at the time to find out I didn’t despise the movie quite like I remembered. However, I wasn’t completely infatuated for a lot of the same reasons I didn’t really care for A Dame to Kill For. Chief among them is the priority for stylized violence (ala the Kill Bill films) over a meaty plot. There are themes of redemption, noir, and plenty of things I usually like in a movie, but neither Sin City, not A Dame to Kill For, seem to completely put everything together at once, or separately for that matter.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For is available in wide release. See it today!
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