Cast: Mickey Rourke, Jessica Alba, Josh Brolin, Eva Green, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Powers Boothe, Rosario Dawson, Jamie Chung, Juno Temple, Ray Liotta, Jeremy Piven, Bruce Willis, Jaime King, Christopher Lloyd and Stacy Keach
Can you believe it’s taken nine years to produce a sequel to the original Sin City (2005)?
Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez have teamed up once again and have put together another all star line-up of Hollywood talent. You’ll also be pleased to know that many of the old favourites are back.
Mickey Rourke’s Marv (A thug with a moral code who favours the underdog), Jessica Alba’s Nancy still in mourning for her saviour and lover John Hartigan, Played by Bruce Willis in the previous movie and he makes a ghostly appearance in 2. The character of private eye Dwight McCarthy also makes a return but with Josh Brolin replacing Brit actor Clive Owen and Brolin does a far more convincing job playing the tough guy. The stunning Rosario Dawson reprises her role as Gail the ‘Big Mama’ in charge of her gang of leather clad and lethal beauties who rule Old Town in Sin City. The two newcomers to the franchise who have main storylines are Joseph Gordon Levitt as Johnny, a cocky young gambler who gate crashes a poker game and humiliates the wrong guy Senator Roark (Powers Boothe) also from the original film. And then there’s French actress Eva Green who plays Ava Lord an old flame of Dwight’s and is a Dame to kill for.
Miller and Rodriguez have threaded together a number of storylines in a true graphic novel style.
The Film opens with ‘Just Another Saturday Night’ Marv wakes up to find himself on a highway with several dead bodies and a smashed up police car but he has no idea of how he got there. He starts to retrace his steps to find out what happened before his blackout.
‘The Long Bad Night’ Gambler Johnny has come to Sin City to seek out Senator Roark and take him apart despite the fact that this could cost him more than poker chips.
‘A Dame to Kill For’ This is pretty much the main story and centres on Dwight being suckered in to helping his ex-lover Ava Lord to escape her abusive and powerful husband. Ava is a typical Raymond Chandler style femme fatale and easily convinces Dwight by the power of seduction. But poor Dwight is obsessed by Ava and can’t see the evil behind her scheme. Dwight enlists the help of big Marv to storm the heavily guarded house.
‘Nancy’s Last Dance’ Nancy is still pole dancing in the club in the knowledge that she is protected by 300lbs of muscle in the name of Marv, who took on the job as her Guardian Angel since the death of Hartigan. But Nancy seeks revenge from Senator Roark who she blames for Hartigan’s suicide. Nancy enlists the help of Marv to storm the Senator’s heavily guarded house.
When Sin City first came out in 2005 it had a unique quality to it which was originality and coolness. It was one of those must-see movies. Filmed in black and white with flashes of colour it moved along at a good pace and although it was extremely violent it was somewhat unreal as it lived in the comic book world.
The follow up lacks something as it is too similar to the first outing. Now don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy this film and there are some marvellous 3D scenes in the opening credits and in the first half of the film but after a while you tend to forget that it has 3D effects. I think the problem is style over substance as the stories are quite unoriginal. I can see Marv having his own spin-off movie at some point as he pretty much links the stories and although he always itching for a fight and goes over the top with his violent rages, you can’t help liking him.
Lady Gaga has a cameo as a waitress and is actually quite good in the 3 minutes that she has on screen. Powers Boothe as the nasty Senator seems to make a living out of playing bad guys these days. I recommend you check out Southern Comfort (1981) in which he plays the newbie National Guard recruit fighting for survival with Keith Carradine in the Louisiana swamps. Joseph Gordon Levitt seems to be in everything these days and seems to get better and better.
Sin City can be an acquired taste and isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. It deserves the 18 certificate mostly for the violence, the sex scenes are quite well shot and not that gratuitous. There was some controversy over the posters of Eva Green’s character Ava showing some half naked images but if you get a chance to see it you will agree that there is much worse on the covers of Cosmopolitan and the like. They actually banned the posters in the US. But I suppose there is no such thing as bad publicity.
Three out of five stars.
In cinemas now.