I am a huge fan of film noir. To me, there are few styles of film more sleek, stylish and cool. I even wrote a book in the style (insert not-so shameless plug here). And if you’ve seen the first Sin City, then you know that it is an absolute Noirgasm from the scenery, to the characters, to the lingo. Even more entertaining, is its groundbreaking chromo key, color washing visuals that make it look straight off the pages of Frank Miller’s original 1991 graphic novel. Sin City: A Dame to Kill For is more of the same.
Like with the first film, A Dame to Kill For features an All-Star cast and is broken up into three different stories with a few intertwining characters. The titular tale, a prequel to a segment in the first film, revolves around sexy femme fatale, Ava Lord (Eva Green as naked as ever) as she manipulates her tortured ex, Dwight (Josh Brolin replaces Clive Owen) and a few policeman (Christopher Meloni and Jeremy Piven). It also features some tough, gangland prostitutes (Rosario Dawson and Jamie Chung). Another story, involves a young, cocky gambler (Joseph Gordon Levitt) trying to one up the most dangerous man in town, Senator Rourke (Powers Boothe). And the last, the only actual sequel from part one, follows stripper Nancy Callahan (Jessica Alba) as she looks to avenge her fallen love (Bruce Willis) with the help of grizzly badass, Marv (Mickey Rourke).
In comparison to 2005’s Sin City, the stories are not nearly as hefty with emotion or even vigor. Ironically, the most entertaining one, starring Gordon-Levitt, is the one that is not adapted from one of Miller’s original graphic novels. None of that should take away from the big attraction though; the beautiful visuals that leave each scene stunningly vibrant. But, if you found the first film excessively violent, gratuitously sexual, shallow, and vulgar then you’ve got no business watching this film. If, like me, you appreciate the unique imagery and love the over the top action and sleek throwback dialogue, then this is the movie for you. Simply stated, if you liked 2005’s Sin City, then you’ll like this one too.
FINAL GRADE: B+