Media Monday: Sucker Punched

Going to add something new to my day of the week blog posts


Two weekends ago (sorry that I'm just getting to this now) my roommate and I went to see Sucker Punch in the theater. On opening day, in the early afternoon. The only other people in the theater with us were men, by themselves, all over the age of thirty-five or so. That should have been sign number one.

On paper Sucker Punch sounds great. There are a lot of things going for it.
1) It passes the Bechdel test (there is more than one woman, they talk to each other, not about men)

2) Two out of the main six cast are Asian Jamie Chung, Korean and Vanessa Hudgens (above) who is half Filipina

3)It's an action flick that features an all female ensemble. Girls kicking ass. That almost never happens the most recent one that comes to mind for me is Elektra in 2005 starring Jennifer Garner. That movie was terrible. Also i don't think I've seen an ensemble that was fully female before.

But Sucker Punch is god awful. It plays into the biggest fear that people have about female action flicks and made obvious by the audience that watched it with me. The females in their roles are not for empowering the women by kicking ass and taking names. They exist solely for the male gaze. For men to look upon them and be in awe at their femininity and their skimpy clothes while playing out some sort of dominatrix fantasy. Instead of being empowered they are fetishized.

When you look at the plot of the movie this becomes painfully obvious. For those of you who don't know that short plot is a girl gets committed to an insane asylum in the 60's by an evil stepfather and creates a fantasy world to get away from it.

By most trailers for this you'd think that her fantasy world is one where she is a badass and fights strange beings (steampunk nazi's, dragons, and robots). That is actually the fantasy within the fantasy. The fantasy that she escapes the insane asylum with is that SHE WORKS IN A WHORE HOUSE. It also might be a strip club I'm not really sure that is dancing and pimping. And then apparently that fantasy is so terrible that she has to fantasize from within that one that she has a sword and a gun and kicks butt? I really don't get it.

After the movie ended my roommate and I turned to each other and went "Ehhh...." and that still really sums up my thoughts for this movie.

1 comment:

turtlejen said...

Interesting. I wanted to see it. Now I'm not so sure. Curiosity has me by the short hairs, so I'll wait for it to come out on DVD.