You know no matter how popular a movie might be, there is a shelf life and a window for the inevitable sequel that fans want and studios want to cash in on. Nine years after the original film we return to the streets of one of the most dangerous towns in movie history as "Sin City: A Dame To Kill For" tries to recapture in the magic of the first effort and really only gets part of the way there.
Weaving together two of Frank Miller's more iconic graphic novels along with some new characters we got dropped on the mean streets of "Sin City" once more where corruption is expected, the blood flows nightly and murder is about as common place as the mail as the lives of some of the more hard boiled denizens cross paths with one another for some pretty dramatic results.
Matching the style and tone of the first film, "Sin City: A Dame To Kill For" biggest problem is that it probably should have come out in 2007 or 2008. More then anything it feels dated and out of place and if not one scene chewing, movie stealing performance this would have ended up as a tired disaster.
No one question the remarkable talent of both Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez who reteam for this sequel, as the film just looks stunning from beginning to end but there is something missing. It is the marriage of style with almost no substance what so ever. Pretty pictures and stark imagery need something to back it up in the movie going world, and if you don't have them, there is no reason for anyone to actually give a damn. It was cool and edgy the first time out, but this effort seems like an obvious attempt to have lightning strike twice, and with the exception of one stand out performance the entire film is just a case of been there, done that. It isn't bad, but you can't help but shake that sense of déjà vu that is creeping into your head.
In spite of many aspects and characters either being rehashed, recreated or reimagined, the first "Sin City" had nothing that came close to the powerhouse turn from Eva Green as Ava. She exposed herself (both literally and emotionally) as her Ava tore up the screen at every single turn making for such a captivating and truly tragic femme fetale. Green knew the material that she had in front of her and played it note perfectly opposite Josh Brolin who did a solid job himself making for a highlight in what was otherwise a fairly weak film. Mickey Rourke was fine again as Marv, but Jessica Alba just felt like she didn't want to be there and Joseph Gordon Levitt probably shouldn't have shown up in the first place.
This is the kind of movie that is genuinely hard to dislike, because it has the style and flash in spades that should make for an entertaining narrative but the story was just dull and never evoked any memories of the thrill of the original movie, everyone involved just waited too damn long.
2 out of 5 stars.
"Sin City: A Dame To Kill For" is now playing in theatres everywhere. Please check with local listings for show times.