It must either be really wise decision making, or a really weird coincidence that Eva Green stars in two Frank Miller based projects in 2014, both of which are pretty much just god awful cash grabs of their former films, and she ends up being about the best aspect of both films. Green really stole “Rise of an Empire” from everyone, and here she seems to embrace the absurdity in the incredibly rancid “A Dame to Kill For.” I’m not going to say I’m disappointed that “A Dame to Kill For” is awful, mainly because I didn’t ask for a sequel and I didn’t want one. I likened “Sin City” to Robert Rodriguez’s own wonky version of “Pulp Fiction.”
Do we need a sequel to “Pulp Fiction”? Hell no.
“A Dame to Kill For” is a terrible follow up to what was an entertaining ensemble piece based on Frank Miller’s gory neo noir graphic novels. This time around, directors Rodriguez and Miller seem to be marketing on the most popular aspects of their first film. It’s almost as if they have no confidence in their material, so they’re anxious to remind audiences why they enjoyed “Sin City” in the first place. If you loved the whole of the story as I did, you’ll be annoyed to see that the pair relies heavily on Mickey Rourke’s Marv, Jessica Alba’s Nancy, and Power Boothe’s villain Roark. In fact for a film that lists the former two with top billing Boothe gets more screen time than just about anyone. It’s like Rodriguez is latching on to these parts, completely unaware that the first film was so well received.
In either case, “A Dame to Kill For” immediately opens on Marv mid-narration (sans title sequence even), and even connects Marv to Nancy in a terribly convoluted excuse to segue in to the brutally boring finale. “Sin City” was so much more entertaining and energetic while this feels like someone took left over parts and tried desperately to stretch it in to a coherent film. The story line jumps back and forth between time in order to accommodate and give us a valid excuse for bringing in stars from the first film. Though Marv was grilled on an electric chair in the end of his story line in “Sin City,” he’s back because his story line in the sequel is set in the past. And Dwight is also seen in the past before he changed his face to look like Clive Owen, but Nancy Callahan is still a stripper for her club. Hartigan occasionally appears in ghost form to remind us that Bruce Willis appeared in the first film.
No wait—Nancy is haunted by the ghost of Hartigan who she hates for committing suicide. Despite the fact Nancy would have had to keep running and hiding despite Hartigan taking his own life, she’s still a stripper, and does nothing but moan about her sadness, drink her nights away, and plans to kill off Roark. The fact that the performances are stronger this time doesn’t compensate for what is just a hundred minutes of droning nonsense. Its endless dialogue with no point, and the material concocted by Miller for the sake of the sequel just downright stinks. “A Dame to Kill For” is way too late, has nothing new or interesting to offer fans of the first film and is just half assed, poorly conceived, and so utterly awful. And they want to make a TV series out this? I’m happy not visiting “Sin City” for a very long time.