Bruce Willis, Mickey Rourke, and Clive Owen are among the many well-known actors appearing in "Sin City" (2005), a pulpy, noirish movie adapted from Frank Miller's graphic novels. I don't regret having missed seeing this film on the big screen, but on DVD I found it entertaining.
I know very little about graphic novelsMiller's or anyone else'sso I'll be reviewing "Sin City" as a standalone movie.
The film tells three loosely connected hard-boiled tales, all unfolding in a gritty metropolis steeped in corruption. Typical characters are criminals, dirty cops, and hookers. There's lots of stylized dismemberment, but its impact on me was minimal because I never felt particularly emotionally engaged.
One of the three yarns involves a good cop (Bruce Willis) being framed for pedophilia, serving an eight-year prison term, and being released to find his alleged victim grown up and working as an exotic dancer. Another yarn is about an ugly hulk of a man (Mickey Rourke) trying to avenge the murder of a hooker who was nice to him. The third yarn shows how when a guy (Clive Owen) who's defending a barmaid kills a police detective, the incident triggers an all-out shooting war between prostitutes and mobsters. I would say the best thing about the movie is its strong stories.
I was quite impressed by the cast of "Sin City." In addition to Willis, Rourke, and Owen, the movie features the following actors: Benicio Del Toro, Jessica Alba, Rosario Dawson, Elijah Wood, Michael Clarke Duncan, Brittany Murphy, Rutger Hauer, Josh Hartnett, Alexis Bledel, Carla Gugino, Jaime King, Devon Aoki, Michael Madsen, and Nick Stahl.
I liked the look of the movie. It's basically in black-and-white, although occasionally selected objects are shown in color. For example, there's a villain with yellow skin, and at one point Clive Owen drives a red car while Benicio Del Toro drives a blue one.
The film's behind-the-camera talent is also impressive. The movie was shot and cut by Robert Rodriguez. Directing credit goes to Rodriguez and Frank Miller, with Quentin Tarantino being credited as "special guest director."
The "Sin City" DVD comes with only one bonus material, an eight-and-a-half-minute featurette titled "Behind the Scenes." I enjoyed listening to Miller, Rodriguez, Tarantino, and some of the actors talk about the film. I'm guessing that in the future there will be DVD editions of "Sin City" that will provide more extras. Also, I expect there will be other movies made from Miller's series of "Sin City" graphic novels.
Below I've listed the details for the "Sin City" DVD.
Release Date: August 16, 2005
Feature Run Time: 2 Hours 4 Minutes
MPAA Rating: R for Sustained Strong Stylized Violence, Nudity and Sexual Content Including Dialogue
Anamorphic Widescreen (1.85:1), Black-and-White
English DTS 5.1
English Dolby Digital 5.1
French Language Track
English Captions for the Hearing Impaired
Behind-the-Scenes Featurette (8 min. 30 sec.)