By TOM MEEK | March 31, 2011
The words “loud, sexy, and inane” pretty much sum up the latest from Zack Snyder. The director of 300 and Watchmen has plenty of visual panache, but when it comes to storytelling, he’s a bombastic hack. Sucker Punch is the dark ballad of Babydoll (Emily Browning), a sulking waif committed to a mental institution by her nefarious stepfather after her sister is found dead. A lobotomy awaits, and to gain her freedom, or some semblance of justice, Babydoll drops into alternative planes of reality that involve a sweatshop bordello, where her dance skills rival those of Salome, and a fantasy landscape where she and several other scantily clad inmates battle Nazis, orcs, and dragons. The visuals, backed by a hip soundtrack, offer a ripe spectacle, but the trivial framework and insipid dialogue rupture the spell so often that no dance, no matter how titillating, can punch it up.