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The Independent Critic

Jessica Alba, Mickey Rourke, Bruce Willis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Clive Owen, Josh Brolin, Michael Madsen, Rosario Dawson
Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez
Frank Miller, Robert Rodriguez, William Monahan
Rated R
102 Mins.
The Weinstein Company

 "Sin City: A Dame to Kill For" is Both Bad-Ass and Bad 
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If you were a fan of Frank Miller's 2005 film Sin City, there's a pretty good chance that you're going to enjoy Sin City: A Dame to Kill For, Shot in much the same way as its predecessor, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For doesn't have quite the impact as the first film mostly because it has that sense of "I've seen it before."

While it's not likely to win too many new converts to Frank Miller's world, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For still dazzles as long as you can surrender yourself to its hyper-stylized world where extreme violence and nudity is abundant and unapologetic. This film features many of the same characters as the first film, some played by new actors, and there are a few new characters who mix things up in fine fashion.

The film features four story segments - three are prequels to the first film, while one takes place following the events of Sin City.

Marv (Mickey Rourke) is back and kicks the film off with a fiery energy with a story based upon Miller's Just Another Saturday Night. The barrel-chested Marv finds himself in a spot of trouble after a go-around with a bunch of punks and places it upon himself to inflict some good ole' fashioned vigilante justice with the help of the citizens of Old Town.

From a newer Miller tale called The Long Bad Night, Johnny (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) is a gambler by nature who never loses a game of chance. For the most part, that's worked well for him. Then, he makes what might just be a mistake by winning big at a game of poker presided over by Sen. Roarke (Powers Boothe), who doesn't take kindly to losing. He really doesn't take kindly to losing.

Dwight (Josh Brolin) has a soft spot for Ava (Eva Green), a soft spot that Evan takes full advantage of and, well, you'll just have to see the rest from a 1993 Miller work. Brolin, taking over for Clive Owen, is an absolute natural in this kind of noirish pulp.

Finally, the beautiful stripper Nancy (Jessica Alba) is back in another new Miller tale, Nancy's Last Dance, and ready to seek revenge on Senator Roarke for his killing of Hartigan (Bruce Willis).

Stylistically, Sin City: A Dame to Kill For is very similar to its predecessor in that it's filmed mostly in black-and-white with splashes of color. The film's frequent depictions of blood are filmed in bold expressions of red with occasional white, while there's an awesome added touch with Eva Green that just has to make you smile. Some of the supporting newcomers, I'm thinking of Dennis Haysbert and Jeremy Piven in particular, are welcome additions and Sin City: A Dame to Kill For becomes an impressive summer sequel. While it may seem like this immersive world is made for the 3-D experience, I personally didn't find that the 3-D imagery added much to the equation.

© Written by Richard Propes
The Independent Critic