Sin City: A Dame to Kill For didn’t make it to Malaysian cinemas. And for good reason too. For starters, the film had gratuitous violence and nudity meaning that we would probably only get to see three quarters of the film. Second, it bombed spectacularly at the U.S box-office, which ultimately doomed the film and possibly the franchise for good. But was the abysmal box-office yield justified or is Sin City: A Dame to Kill For reflective of its poor results? A recent screening gave us the answer.
The Story: Based on the Frank Miller graphic novel, A Dame to Kill For continues with another round of stories centred on the denizens of Sin City. Like the first film, each story zeroes in on a central character with elements that connect each character with their own story. Most of the characters are familiar from the first film, except with a few casting changes, and a couple of new ones as well. But in essence, the main figures like Marv (Mickey Rourke), Nancy Callahan (Jessica Alba) and Senator Roark (Powers Boothe) remain and offer a continuity and closure to the events of the first Sin City.
What Worked: The stylised treatment of the film and how the Frank Miller’s vision of the comic book is brought to life. Like the first, the film is decisively slick and it pays fitting homage to the 50s-style detective noir genre.
What Didn’t: Some of the stories do seem convoluted in their delivery. The dialogue and narration suffers slightly from over indulgence from the writers, as it drags on excessively and pointlessly in certain scenes.
Minus Points: The excessive violence and nudity, the long-drawn out dialogue.
Conclusion: Overall, A Dame to Kill For isn’t that bad, it’s got an ensemble cast, decent directing, Eva Green being in more nude scenes than all her films combined and Jessica Alba dirty dancing in more scenes than all her films combined. But that said, A Dame to Kill For had some things working against it. For starters, it had a tall order to follow up to the first Sin City, and it was also sequel that was seven years too late. That delay ultimately paid the price for this sequel’s poor results. A Dame to Kill For is in no way bad, and it is watchable but it’s hardly ground-breaking and to be quite honest, just a bit too little, too late.