Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Sin City

So, I just saw Sin City.

I have a hard time disliking a movie where someone gets castrated twice, or a priest is murdered in his own confessional booth. But, by the same token, it's hard to like a movie that gets so many things wrong. Namely, actors trying to deliver the often cornball dialogue, dripping with adolescent fatalism and snide cynicism, the end result congealing in a puddle of misplaced intentions. As you may have heard or witnessed, Sin City is all hyperstylzed postmodern noir where nobody can just walk out of building, they have to leap out and photogenically soar to the ground while delivering ponderous narration that people who don't know what the word means will describe as existential.

Opening with a lousy scene when Josh Harnet gets to play a grown up, and closing with a suicide that has absolutely no emotional resonance because of the complete inconsequence of the bloodbath preceding it, the movie is purely style. It's for people that enjoy the aesthetic of noir - the harsh black and white, the postwar cynicism writ large, fedoras, trench coats, duplicitous femme fatales with evil hearts and crotches that generate enough heat to sear your eyebrows through the screen, tough talking thugs, and the brutal, tragic destiny inexorably waiting at the end of the dark corridor for the anti hero - but don't have the patience to sit through the real mccoy. Sin City, to it's credit, is paced at full tilt boogie, with oddles of death and gallons of blood, dismemberment, and nudity. Thankfully, the attempts at profundity and seriousness pass with equal breakneck speed. It makes it easier to try and ignore some of the really shitty performances, tougher to appreciate the good ones. Hands down the worst performance in a film full of questionable ones, belongs to the shrill and unlikable Brittany Murphy, whose grating voice and horrible mannerisms had me want to shoot her with a harpoon. It doesn't help anyone that the her dialogue reads like a twelve year old's conception of Hammet. Only Mickey Rourke is able to jump into the proceedings it with a truly admirable gusto. if only everyone was working on the same level of pulpy bravado, what a movie it could have been.

Yeah, I didn't always enjoy myself. I rarely got bored. The three intertwining plots that unnecessarily and gracelessly were shoehorned together were all variations on same thing. The entire movie was a repetitive drone and was so cranked up for maximum stimulus that any new visceral sensation was lost in the overdriven tide. But I did get to vicariously live out my fantasy of tearing of Nick Stahl's genitals with my bare hands through Bruce Willis, or murdering a clergymen through Mickey Rourke, or eating another human being through Elijah Wood.

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home