UK Release: August 29th 2014
Nine years after the original influenced a lot of other films visual looks by using green-screen, as well as many last night casino/gambolling adverts, ‘SIN CITY 2: A DAME TO KILL FOR’, has the task of trying to do something new to something it influenced and started. Directed again by Robert Rodriguez and the comic book creator of Frank Miller (they have terrible cameos here), this film has a great cast (probably better then the film itself), of Eva Green, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Jessica Alba, Bruce Willis, Josh Brolin (replacing Clive Owen), Rosario Dawson, Powers Boothie and returning as Marv (a role which fits him like a glove), Mickey Rourke.
Returning to the streets of Basin City for three interlinking stories, only two are actual based on Miller’s graphic novels. The titular ‘Dame to Kill For’ is very much the centre piece of the film, and rightfully so. With a wonderful performance from Eva Green as the femme fatale Ava Lord (which poster caused outrage), who can manipulate men like there is no tomorrow. There is a lot of fun watching Green on screen, and following on from the TV series of ‘Penny Dreadful’ and ‘300: Rise of the Empire’ this certainly caps off her bizarre year in TV and film. She is the best thing in the film, and despite strangely having a CGI crotch allows the film to work. Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s segment created for the film seems to get the bum end. He is very good as the gambler Johnny, and he does has a dashing presence on screen and his character does fit into the world, but the film can function without his story being in this film and its the only story which doesn’t feel like it gets a deserving end.
On a whole ‘Sin City 2’ is a disappointing package. Despite a cast (all on good form), to die for and being a sequel to a film which made its mark on pop culture you will be surprised how poorly the stories themselves interlock and complement with one and other and more so how the cast are implemented. Most of them are just cameos. Willis, Rourke, Jeremy Piven, Lady Gaga (why? Well of course Lady Gaga represents *exportation* cinema – see Rodriguez’s ‘Machete Kills’), Dennis Haysbert, Ray Liotta, Christopher Lloyd, Juno Temple and Marton Csokas all make cameos, and do nothing more than to serve as foreground. And this is a shame; everyone played a part in the original ‘Sin City’.
On a whole this a disappointing package. It’s amazing how something which influenced pop culture and mainstream cinema has ridiculed itself by doing it a poor degree to the stuff the original influenced. Let’s face it anyone can build a green screen and shot a film with it now a day. With a lack of wit, less adventure and occasional dullness, this hard-boiled tale needs to kill once and for all.