"Sin's" Dames Can't Help Luring; Aestetics Win, Stories Wobble

by Tony Rutherford , HNN Entertainment Editor
"Sin's" Dames Can't Help Luring; Aestetics Win, Stories Wobble
Combining modern elements of the graphic novel and harshly honed extractions that accent a 21st Century brutality and sexuality disallowed by the "code" in the film noir era, "A Dame to Kill For" (a.k.a. Frank Miller's "Sin City" sequel) accents stylish artistic backgrounds. The story wobbles  from one vile hard boiled thug to another. Concurrently,  the empowered females have claimed their emancipation beyond subtle looks, movements or glaring lipstick.

Pulp crime drama director Robert Rodriguez co-directs with Miller. Crunched fingers, spilled blood and severed heads have a distant illusory quality in the gray backdrops. What should have reviled has  empathetic numbness as flying bullets fail to plug gaping storylines.

Ava Lord (Eva Green), an ultimate  femme fatale, absorbs then smolders as the woman who found a way to escape making bucks on her back.  Green's so slippery spitting the Raymond Chandler (think 50s private eye) lines that her deceptiveness occasionally gives way (albeit briefly) for dumbfounded ingenue status that vanishes forever in a series of simmering splashes. Her nudes blend with the blackness, neither raunchy nor sensual.

Combining "Dame to Die For" and "Just Another Saturday Night" graphic novels with new materials, particularly a lucky, skilled pompous  poker player (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) out of his league, prove a total helter skelter mismatch.  Aesthetics and Mickey Rourke meld nicely. The rest a mess of dropping bloody breathing bodies on the curbs or battering eyes, busting ribs in Rodriguez excessive trademark frenzy.

Have to grant a full  thumbs up to the overpowering women of Old Town who seduce with brains and kicks.

You're going to find this visit to the City of Sin a little rugged, hard to follow, and torturous unless the franchise, Miller and Rodriguez already flatter. This  "Dame to Kill For" might contain more melodramatic murkiness than you can coherently grapple. Winners or losers, they are all alike. Kinda like a "Godfather" soap opera, where all cheaters, tough guys (and gals), and anyone else ends up with blood oozing and oozing.
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