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April 1st, 2011

Movie Review - Sucker Punch

Sucker Punch

Staring: Emily Browning, Abbie Cornish, Jena Malone, Vanessa Hudgens, Jamie Chung, Carla Gugino, Oscar Issac, Jon Hamm, Scott Glenn, and more...

Directed by: Zack Snyder  Story by: Zack Snyder Screenplay by: Zack Snyder & Steve Shibuya Original Music by: Tyler Bates & Marius De Vries

Premise: This is a story of angels, angels that come to help you in different ways and wearing different forms, whether you want them to or not. A chance encounter at a mental institution sets of a series of events in multiple realities all aiming at one thing - gaining freedom.

Review: I'd heard good and bad things about this film so I went to see it with some misgivings. However, I ended up being given quite a tasty treat. But I can see how some things could be missed, which would take away from the full experience, so pay close attention. :P

Through the film, keep in mind what the female voice tells you at the beginning of the film. Here are the seeds of all that will follow. Also pay particular attention to the girl on the bed in the theater. The connection that happens there between her and the new comer is pivotal to everything else.

The plot appears simple and just as stated on the previews - find five objects and you will be set free.  Four of the five are shown to us right away. What makes this simple goal interesting is the spread out/connecting effect it has on others over time.  Especially at the end, more than those originally involved were affected and in their own way set free - a few never knowing until that point that they'd been prisoners.

The visuals are fantastic! Totally loved the saying of "the world is a stage" and having it taken to broader lengths, even involving the opening of the film in how they show the Warner Brother's logo. The fights are good, the shaky cam on some of the fight scenes not used long enough to give any trouble. Lots of cool shots. Especially loved the dream worlds - mixing some contemporary and future items with things you'd not normally see, like giant samurai, dragons and goblins, the trenches of WWI manned with mechanized enemies, derigibles, mecha, a total mixture of stuff. Totally loved the face off in the temple grounds, with the fog, the mountains, a grand, breathtaking vista! The shell of the church in the WWI sequence looked just like actual shells of catholic churches you've seen in other films/documentaries. The grand vista of a ringed world dominating the sky of the planet they were on. Tons of stunning visuals.

My son-in-law said he had troubles with the sections switching from reality to reality, but I didn't. They give a lot of cues if you look for them. Normally a pan view of Baby Doll's head and a change in the overall background color. Watch for those cues and you shouldn't get lost. (Plus the original reality is so drab, you won't mistake it!)

For the guys, lots of mini skirts, girls with swords and guns! Explosions, mayhem, mecha! And make sure to watch the end credits as you get a song and dance number with all the girls dressed up as well.

One point I found quite funny was that for the 3rd tier of reality, we're told the enemy are already dead just reanimated with technology and later are robots, so mass destruction can ensue and no deaths caused. This is despite the fact that in layer 2/layer 1 death actually happens. I suppose it just shows the depth of disassociation they all were running through.

Overall, it was a nice ride with lots of pretty things to look at for all viewers. And make sure to listen closely at the end, so you know someone who may seems like he got away with something will also be getting his comeuppance.

Rating: 4 out of 5 cause I liked the subtle twist.  (Hubby Rating - Better as a Matinee)
Gloria Oliver
Unveiling the Fantastic



(2015) Fantasy

The King is Dead! Long Live the Undead King!

"What are you implying?"

The magister glided forward and scrunched down beside him.

"That in order to bathe, you must first actually get into the bath."


(2014) Urban Fantasy

It took everything from her, except revenge!

The muscles in my right arm jerked from tension as I tried to make it move and it resisted. A shrill scream inside my head insisted I didn't want to do this. That if I did, there'd be no way to take it back. "I...I'm afraid."


(2011) Young Adult – Fantasy

Which is worse…the monster without or within?


Home—family—the two things he would never have, the two things forever denied him…because of her.

Anger welled inside him, the heat of it suffusing him to the core, gurgling with seething emotions the total opposite of the coolness splashing down from the fountain nearby. Before he realized what he was doing, Jarrin stepped inside the gazebo.

(2007) Young Adult – Fantasy
“Harry Potter meets Dragon Riders of Pern”


“Do you need any help?” she asked. “Just tell me what you want me to do. If you prefer, I’m sure I can round up at least a few people to come over and give you a hand.”

Kel slowly shook his head. “It’s all right. Thanks anyway.” His voice lowered to where she almost couldn’t hear it. “This is all part of my punishment.’

She frowned, not understanding what he meant. “Punishment?”

Kel cocked his head in Clarence’s direction. In a flash, she understood. None of this was an accident. Clarence had landed there deliberately, hoping to make Kel pay for all he went through in the past month. She shook her head, not wanting to believe this, but what the dragon said next took any doubts right out of her head.

(2008) Young Adult – Fantasy
“To save the world she must DIE! Or must she?”


Panic and fear filled with utter helplessness made her dizzy. She knew what would be done with her, she knew what they planned. But there was nothing she could do to stop any of it.

Sharp gasps echoed in her ears as she felt the room’s cold air caress the Eye.

“You were right. She is the one.”

(2002) Adult/YA – Japanese Fantasy Adventure
“The Last Samurai meets Pirates of the Caribbean”


Laying the blade on the floor before him, Toshi parted his kimono until his stomach lay exposed. He tucked his sleeves beneath his legs to hold him upright if he should falter. Ignoring Asano, he took up the blade. His shoulder flared with pain and he tried not to flinch, as he grabbed the blade with both hands. He turned the wakizashi until its sharp point was aimed at his belly, the residence of his soul.

(2004) Adult/YA – Fantasy Mystery
“He tried to forget his past, but his past wouldn’t forget him”


Torren took a step back a sudden shudder racking through him. It was as if he’d never left, as if the boy he’d been would be coming back-though the one who’d loved this room and all these things was long, long dead. That boy died when he’d watched his father’s blood pour forth from his mouth, the end of a sword protruding from his abdomen. That boy died when he survived while everyone else lay dead.

Info, sample chapters, and free reads at www.gloriaoliver.com

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