Weekend Roundup – ‘Sin City: A Dame To Kill For’ review

Happy Monday everyone! It’s a sweltering HOT Summer weekend and those who know me well know I’m not a big fan of heat and humidity so I actually spend a lot of time indoors and got to see quite a lot of new movies as well as rewatches.

WeekendViewingRoundupAug24

You could say it’s a pretty eclectic weekend viewing given the variety of movies we saw the past four days. On Friday night we ended up watching The Amazing Spider-man 2 [which wasn’t at all amazing], the psycho thriller ENEMY with Jake Gyllenhaal [as weird as I had expected], and The Philadelphia Story for this month’s Blind Spot. I also rewatched my old fave The Phantom of the Opera, yep the movie that made me fall hard for Gerry Butler oh so many years ago.

I didn’t go to the cinema this weekend, but boy seems that lots of people went to see The Guardians of the Galaxy again as it’s now back on top with $17 mil, beating all the new releases, including Sin City: A Dame to Kill For which bombed big time with only $6 mil, ouch! Well, having seen it, I really think this sequel is utterly unnecessary and after nine years, it seems much too late for a follow-up. Here’s my review:

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I was curious to see this one mainly because of the striking visuals, which was pretty much all I could remember from the first film. That, and how cool, sexy and mysterious Clive Owen was and the stylized brutal violence, especially the bits involving Elijah Wood in a role as far away as Frodo as it could get. This time Frank Miller is back in the directing chair with Robert Rodriguez.

This time, we’ve got Josh Brolin as Owen’s replacement in the role of Dwight, a pity as Brolin doesn’t come close in terms of cool factor as the brooding, hunky British actor. Well, the same could be said about the movie as a whole. The novelty factor of the color palette of black & white with a touch of red is wearing thin, plus the plot is even thinner this time around, chock full of clichéd dialog that ultimately renders the whole thing pointless.

The tagline refers to the main character in one of the four entwined story lines, and admittedly, it’s the more intriguing one simply because of Eva Green. Oh how I’d have loved to have seen her on screen with Clive Owen, she’s my favorite Bond girl and Owen’s an actor who’d make an awesome 007. In any case, Green plays a femme fatale type role in which she played as effortlessly as she ditched her clothes in the film. Being French she’s clearly comfortable with nudity. The stylish lighting and camera angle captured her allure beautifully as she devoured every scene she’s in with aplomb.

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The rest of the story lines are pretty boring by comparison, my least favorite is the one involving Joseph Gordon-Levitt as he seems miscast in the role, especially against Powers Booth who fits the noir genre perfectly. He’s quite sinister here with his deep, gravely voice, but his character is as one-dimensional as the rest. The father/son story is nowhere near as clever or intriguing as it wants to be. Jessica Alba reprises her role as Nancy and with all of her gyrating body as a stripper, she is just so lightweight that she comes across so ho-hum next to Eva Green. Mickey Rourke’s back again as Marv, perhaps the film’s comic relief, even in the most violent parts of the movie.

The movie is only 1 hr 42 min long but it started to drag pretty quickly. The stylized violence and all that nudity + sex scenes felt more like a gimmick that became more ho-hum as the movie progressed. As I came out of the theater I thought, it took them 9 years to come up with THIS? [shakes head] Despite the beautiful 3D, the film falls exasperatingly flat. Proof that visual flair alone doesn’t make a movie.

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So that’s what I saw this weekend folks, what about you? Seen anything good?

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49 thoughts on “Weekend Roundup – ‘Sin City: A Dame To Kill For’ review

  1. And girl, oh girl, do we see a LOT of Eva Green in this film! She’s the best thing in this movie, which probably raises it some in my rating for the film. Still, all your points are valid. It doesn’t compare well with the first film, even with dear Eva working her considerable magic. Fine review, Ruth.

    1. Ahah, yeah a whole lot of Eva certainly would please her fans 😉 But she really is stunning, which makes the other ladies far less intriguing. But overall it just falls flat to me, maybe if Clive Owen were still playing Dwight I might upgrade my rating to 3!

  2. I liked the first movie but really have no interest in this. Reviewers have been saying more of the same-same from Rodriguez.

    Saw a few cool movies this weekend. Two of the years best for me in fact.

    First was The One I Love. This low budget indie that does so much with so little. It stars the charming Elizabeth Moss and indie rockstar Jay Duplass. It starts out as a troubled relationship pic then makes a left turn directly into the Twilight Zone. The less said the better about this one. Big thumbs up. No spoilers in this trailer.

    The other was Blue Ruin. It’s a low budget revenge pic in the Coen Bros. vein. It’s been favorably compared to Blood Simple and Fargo with its hapless but involving lead character who sets out on revenge that may or nay not be misguided. It’s pretty violent but not without a pretty strong point about the nature of revenge (“An eye for and eye…”) and our gun culture. It might move a little slow for some people’s tastes but with the tension is turned up to 11 you don’t seem to really notice. Another big thumbs up.

    Check these out Ruth.

    1. Hi ya Dave! Yep, more of the same is right but still worth a rent for miss Eva 😉 Oh I might check out The One I Love but Blue Ruin from what I’ve read so far sounds too graphic and violent for my feeble nerves.

  3. Ted S.

    I enjoyed the first Sin City but have no desire to see this sequel, looks lame to me. Somehow I think Robert Rodriquez has lost interest in making good films again, I used to be fan of his but after he made all those Spy Kids movies for his kids, he seems to just doesn’t care anymore about making anything good.

    I finally saw Guardians of the Galaxy over the weekend, I liked it. It’s basically Star Wars with Marvel characters. There were so many scenes in the movie that reminded me of the original Star Wars films.

    1. Yeah it IS lame, Ted. I’ve never been fond of Rodriguez’s style, well apart from the first Sin City, but this one is such a downgrade from the first, even w/ Eva Green’s sultry performance.

      Ah glad you enjoyed Guardians of the Galaxy! It does have a retro feel of Star Wars, perhaps that’s why it was such a hit as both the young & older generation can enjoy it!

  4. Good call on Sin City 2. Nine years later is a long time. I don’t think Brolin is a bad replacement for Clive, but I think the biggest flaw was the script. Nothing interesting to look at other than Eva’s body if that’s why you bought the ticket cause you knew she’d be naked. It worked well in the first film, but this one is lame in comparison. Too bad. I was looking forward to a sizzling, fun modern Noir.

    1. Hello Cindy! Brolin was ok but Owen is so much better in the role and as an actor in general, well to me anyway 😉 Eva’s body is such a work of art in itself. I often think of nudity in films as being unnecessary and over-indulgent yet somehow it works in this case but the script is just lame. It’s a wasted opportunity as it could’ve been a sizzling neo noir.

    1. Oh I LOVE Philomena. I saw it on the plane back from Paris and was blown away by it. Dame Judi is well, phenomenal as always, but I’m also surprised seeing Coogan in a serious role.

      1. PrairieGirl

        The DVD had extras with interviews of both Judi and Steve. Even though it was a serious movie both Steve and Judi managed to add some levity and fun to it, so Steve didn’t totally leave his comic roots behind…

  5. Right now, I’m watching Satantango as I’m about to finish the fifth chapter and so far, I’ve watched over 3 hours of the film but still have four more hours to go. It’s a bloody long film and definitely the most challenging film that I’ve encountered. I thought about wanting to see the new Sin City as I loved the first one but I had been wary since Robert Rodriguez hasn’t made a great movie since Planet Terror from Grindhouse. It seems like he kind of lost his way a bit and waited too long to make the sequel. Especially as he had to do some casting replacements and such while not really doing anything new. I’ll watch it if it’s on TV though with very low expectations.

    1. I actually have no interest in Planet Terror, not my cup of tea at all. But I did like the first Sin City, so it’s really a bummer this one is such a downgrade. Yeah, just watch it on TV so you don’t have to pay for it.

  6. Nice review, Ruth. Yeah it bombed hard, I saw it on opening night, along with all 5 other folks who bothered to show up, haha! 😛 But as for the movie itself, I actually didn’t think it was too bad, though I’ll agree that it felt rather pointless, and is overall a step down from its predecessor. I do have to disagree about Brolin, though. I thought he was great, a fine replacement, and his story with Eva Green was by far the best thing going on here.

    1. Hi there Chris! You are easy to please aren’t you? Just kidding! Well I’m glad you like it more than I did. Brolin was ok but I just prefer Owen in general, he’s nicer to look at too and boy he’d be so awesome on screen together w/ Eva Green. Agreed their storyline is the best thing of the bunch!

  7. This movie had some cool moments, but overall, just felt like it was trying too hard to replicate the first, that there were hardly any surprises at all to be found. Good review.

  8. Brittani

    Aw, JGL was one of the things I liked most about A Dame to Kill For. It did fall pretty flat compared to the original though. Jessica Alba really doesn’t have the acting chops to pull of Nancy’s harder scenes.

    1. I normally like JGL, he’s a good actor. But he just doesn’t seem to fit this film at all and his storyline is just lame, though not a fault of his of course. Yep, amen on Alba, such a weak actress, the role would’ve been a lot more intriguing if it had a more capable performer.

  9. That’s too bad to hear about Sin City, Ruth. Unfortunately, I can’t say I’m surprised (based off the trailer), but I haven’t seen it yet, and I probably won’t any time soon based on all the negative reviews I’ve been reading about it lately. That’s too bad about JGL in it too – I love him in just about everything he’s in, but it sounds like the movie just missed the mark in every way. I’ve never been impressed with a Jessica Alba performance ever – maybe it’s just the roles she chooses, or the lack of roles she’s offered, or maybe she just can’t act very well.

    Matt showed me Lucky Number Slevin for the first time this past weekend, and I enjoyed it mostly! It felt a little pretentious, but it was the first movie I’ve seen with Josh Hartnett, and I thought he was a pretty hunky lead guy ;).

    Also, I agree with you on The Amazing Spider-Man 2, although I actually enjoyed it more than I did the first Amazing Spider-Man.

    1. Hello Kris! The trailer actually looked quite promising, but heh it’s more of the same and it’s stale after about 10 minutes! I like JGL but I really think they should’ve hired a different actor. Alba is just blah, esp after you saw Eva Green in her sultry glory. I mean it takes more than a hot body to actually be sexy.

      Ahah you like Josh Hartnett eh? You know he’s from Minneapolis right? I think I went to school w/ a gal who was in his class. He seems like a recluse, tall and gangly. He’s good looking but not my type, reminds me of young Tommy Lee Jones, ahah.

      1. Haha, if only more people thought like that in regards to having more than just a hot body to be sexy.

        I didn’t know that! That’s really cool. Yeah, apparently he was one of Matt’s previous man crushes, haha.

        lol young Tommy Lee Jones?! Haha

  10. It’s a shame for Green because she always gives her best. She really shouldn’t be even undressing for all those terrible flicks she is in, but I guess at least that something that keeps the guys watching them from feeling like it was a waste of time 🙂

    1. Oh I think Eva gave her best, it was a daring performance she pulled off effortlessly. She seems nonchalant about nudity, though she said her dad’s never comfortable w/ it. At least in this movie the nudity was stylized so it didn’t feel like it was full frontal, but I know she’s done much worse. Yeah I think the guys watching this probably give a higher rating because of her 😉

  11. I have been debating seeing this one or not, but I am growing more and more doubtful with all the reviews. I love Eva as well, it’s a shame the movie wasn’t better. PS..I hate Jessica Alba so it is not surprising she was lackluster in this.

    1. Hi Queen Mel! I’d say just rent it if you’re curious. If you like Eva, it’s still worth seeing just for her. I can’t stand Alba as an actress, I wish she’d just concentrate on her baby cleaning products company or whatever and leave acting to the pros!

        1. The funny thing is I used to think she was good in Dark Angel! But heh, she’s a one-note actress [if you can even call it that], right up there w/ K-Stew who can’t act her way out of a paper bag!

  12. Cool weekend! I had fun with The Amazing Spider-Man 2, but it had A LOT of flaws. I think i enjoyed mainly because of the performances by Garfield, Stone and Field.

    Really want to see Enemy; looking forward to your review of The Philadelphia Story. I LOVE that one!

    And I’m so bummed that Sin City 2 is not good 😦

    1. Hi Fernando! I wish I could say I loved Amazing Spider-Man 2, I mean it has its fun moments but overall it was meh. My review of The Philadelphia Story is up now, oh I hope you don’t get mad at me that I didn’t love it as much as you do. I’m still glad I saw it tho but I wasn’t in love w/ it.

  13. I wanted to love A Dame to Kill For, but it doesn’t hold a candle to the first film. I’d give it a weak 3/5.

    I watched a few 2001 films, like The Believer, The Mexican, Donnie Darko, and Ali, over the weekend, as well as Calvary, which was amazing.

  14. Finally saw Sin City not too long ago, but it was very disappointing and boring. I gave the first one a perfect score…this one…utterly forgettable.

  15. I wasn’t a fan of the original (or the comics!) and had been a little surprised to see it do so well at the box office and critically. When this came out and got thrashed, it felt a like vindication to me. Granted, I haven’t watched the sequel, but I expected it to be “more of the same” from Miller & Rodriguez.

    1. Hi Morgan! I think there’s a bit of that novelty factor when the first one came out a decade ago. But by now this style is not so *new* anymore and they didn’t add anything new or fresh to spice things up.

  16. Pingback: Happy Birthday Eva Green! Scenes from some of my favorite roles of hers.

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