|'A lesser offering, with this sort of visual trickery and overall uniqueness of presentation, should be starting to wane... instead, Sin City feels like it could hit cinema screens tomorrow and still wildly impress on a artistic level.'|
Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller's soon-to-be-sequelised Sin City still looks sharp, smart and stylised. That it manages to look those things without, yet, dating is testament to the quality of the end product. A lesser offering, with this sort of visual trickery and overall uniqueness of presentation, should be starting to wane, the effect of 'being different' wearing thin. Instead, Sin City feels like it could hit cinema screens tomorrow and still wildly impress on an artistic level.
As Rodriguez continues to explore the Machete franchise, throwing a sequel to that in to the mix with other such delights as Spy Kids and his Grindhouse films, he seems to have become an easy figure to mock. Underestimate his creative talents at your peril. On Sin City, Rodriguez acts as director, cinematographer and editer. He composed some of the music, had a hand in mixing the sound, operated some of the cameras and supervised the visual effects. The man is nothing if not driven and if you consider Sin City a success (many do, it is holding on to its IMDb Top 250 spot with resolve) then much of that credit must fall at his feet.
That said, he must also then take the blame for not presiding more carefully over co-director Frank Miller's original narrative, which gets ropey at times and is oft-presented in, perhaps deliberately, shocking ways. The most obvious offenders in both of these elements are firstly The Man's (Josh Hartnett) story, which has little to do with anything until it is shoe-horned in to the plot at the end and, secondly, the relationship between Hartigan (Bruce Willis) and Nancy (Jessica Alba), which is presented as worryingly paedophilic, leading to an unsatisfying and uncomfortable finale.
The more successful threads of the tale though - following Marv (Mickey Rourke) and Dwight (Clive Owen) - are satisfying enough in their own right to ensure the film proves a success, both Rourke and Owen turning in menacing depictions of anti-heroes who feel relateable and dangerous. Alexis Bledel creates a good creep and the late Brittany Murphy is pulled from the plot just when her character started to get interesting. Her performance during the scuffle in the flat is worthy of much acclaim, as is a large slice of the rest of Rodriguez' violent noir.
Sin City was playing on Lovefilm Instant.