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24 July 2011

Sin City (2005)

Oh dear, I'm struggling to put my thoughts together about the film I just watched. It took a long time to get through it, and even now I'm not too sure what I just experienced or how I feel about it.

Jessica Alba in Sin City, Miramax 2005


I didn't specifically choose to buy this DVD. It came in a Quentin Tarantino bundle I bought a couple of years ago. Yeah, the same pack that lead to my recent Kill Bill reviews. Quentin's credited as being a guest director, but I really don't know how involved he was. Would I have watched this film if his name hadn't appeared on the cover? Not sure...

Sin City is based upon the Frank Miller series of graphic novels of the same name which you will have guessed correctly... I've not read. But that's never stopped me before...

Sin City, Miramax 2005


As an aside: I was intrigued just now to know what the difference is between a comic and a graphic novel and the answer I like the most is: "the binding". There don't appear to be any hard and fast rules. Graphic novels tend to be thicker because they're novels. Well, that hasn't helped me much...

Clive Owen in Sin City, Miramax 2005


Sin City really does try very hard to look and feel like a comic strip and succeeds in bucketfuls. The art is high contrast - mainly black and white - with splashes of colour added for effect. It is incredibly well done. Although it does take some getting used to at first, I really liked the whole visual side of the film. It works especially well given that the general setting of the story is a fairly classic Noir.

It's a hell of a lot more complicated than the Noir of the 40s or 50s, with more modern touches here and there, but fundamentally this is Noir by the numbers.

Mickey Rourke all plastered up in Sin City, Miramax 2005


The cast are fantastic.

Mickey Rourke is the real revelation for me. He plays a hard-headed, virtually indestructable tough-guy called Marv. And despite the heavy prosthetics to shape his face, you just know it's him underneath. For me, he's the real hero of the film. What an inspired choice for the role!

Elijah Wood as Harry Potter's Evil Twin in Sin City, Miramax 2005


There are other famous faces too: The cynical detective Hartigan is played by Bruce Willis. Bruce is always at his best when he's not trying too hard. He does a good job here - read into that what you will. The victim Nancy Callahan is played by the painfully pretty Jessica Alba. Rutger Hauer drops in for a bit of religious corruption as Cardinal Roark. I won't try to mention them all; There are famous names all over. Some appearances are so short you'd miss them if weren't paying attention. I recognised a lot of the faces if not the names.

Carla Gugina suspects an intruder in Sin City, Miramax 2005


Everything is sounding great at the moment. Why do I have reservations about this film?

Well for one: The storytelling doesn't give enough answers and this is a story that needs answers. There are reveals all the way through, but I'm left wondering what the main point of the journey was. It's not clear. And I can't get away from the fact that the film is just way too long. So, I guess the failure of this film is really in the script. I don't know if it is the result of a poor story or poor execution. Perhaps someone can enlighted me?

That Yellow Bastard in Sin City, Miramax 2005


That's it... I've had enough...

I've said all I care to say about this film.

On the Triple-B I'm going to fight with 4 hookers and come out on top. Oo-er missus...


1 comment:


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