Sweeter than a Hertz donut

And now, an imaginary conversation between me and my moms.

“Dude, you totally have to see Sucker Punch.”

“What’s that?”

You totally have to see Sucker Punch.

What is it?

“Oh, okay. Okay, so you know how in the movie version of Chicago, Roxie copes with the horrors of prison life by fantasizing that everything’s some cheery musical number? And you know how in Flashdance, Pittsburgh’s horndogs would rather watch fully-clothed ladies do interpretive dance than see real peelers? And you know how in Showgirls, everyone talks about how Nomi’s the best dancer of her generation or whatever, but then whenever you see her dance, she’s jerking around so violently that you worry she’s going to hurt herself?”

“…I haven’t seen any of those movies.”

“Well, don’t see Showgirls, okay? You wouldn’t like it. I love it like a brother, but you wouldn’t like it, so don’t see it. Promise?”


“Okay. So. Jeez Louise. Okay, Sucker Punch. This girl’s evil stepfather has her committed to a nuthouse, and bribes an orderly to forge a lobotomy order. And it’s one of those Hollywood nuthouses where even though it’s still fully operational, it’s so rundown that they could be shooting a haunted nuthouse movie at the same time and you wouldn’t even know. All the patients at this hospital are beautiful young girls, because screw you, that’s why, and so the orderly is also maybe whoring them out to guys who are like really really into banging crazy chicks in derelict mental institutions..? I don’t know. It was the 50s.”


“Right. And apparently there’s only one neurosurgeon on planet earth who’s capable of hammering a steel spike into someone’s head, so he’s not available to do the lobotomy right away, you know, this girl has five days to spin her wheels and work out an escape plan. So in between coping with her situation and trying to find a way out of it, she fantasizes about a more glamorous life. Only, I don’t know, maybe she doesn’t actually have an imagination, or maybe she’s crazier than the movie realizes she is, because of all the possible places she could go in the limitless landscape of human imagination, she fantasizes that she’s some kind of weird burlesque sex slave who mesmerizes rich men with her sick dance skillz even though she doesn’t take her clothes off or even, like, bare her shoulder for a minute.”

“That sounds a bit–”

Listen. Jesus. So then even though it’s her own fargin’ fantasy, she then fantasizes that she wants to escape from the burlesque sex ballet or whatever the hell it is, because it sucks the big one. So whenever she’s asked to dance, she goes into this fugue state where she’s not a wronged mental patient or a disco-dancing road whore, but actually, part of an elite troop of skank warriors who prance around in tiny, fetishistic outfits, slaying zombie Nazis and dragons and maybe a gigantic terra cotta warrior or something? I don’t know. Maybe. I was drunk when I saw it.”

“I can tell.”

“Hey. I wasn’t that drunk. I’m a Ladner.”

“I’m sorry.”

“No you’re not. If you were really sorry you’d be online right now, buying this movie on DVD.”

“It doesn’t sound like something I would enjoy, Melodie.”

“Well, I’m not finished. If you let me finish, you’d see how great this movie is and then you’d hang up on me so you could watch it right away on VOD.”

“I don’t think I get VOD.”

You get VOD. Oh my god. Okay. So the thing of it is, they never show her dancing. They start the music, and she sways a little bit like she’s maybe falling asleep standing up, and they cut to the action sequence from her doublethink fantasy hogwash, and then when we come back to the underaged fan-dance whores, they all pee their figurative pants over her mind-blowing dance chops even though we haven’t seen her do anything.”

“Oh, dear.”

“Right? All these actresses have to come running up to her going HOLY CANNOLI WHERE DID YOU LEARN TO DANCE LIKE THAT YOU ARE SO AMAZING THAT YOU CAN SURELY DICKMATIZE OUR WAY TO FREEDOM… but she never actually does anything.”



“Who’s in this… movie?”

“…Emily Browning…”


“But Zack Snyder wrote and directed. That’s the 300 guy.”

“Oh, I liked that one.”

“I know you did. And the action sequences in Sucker Punch are gorgeous. I don’t even really like action movies and I still loved them. Four or five richly imagined alternate universes, each one unique, each one designed to support the loony conceit that it really is that fargin’ hard to steal a fargin’ cigarette lighter.”


“And okay, so some people were kind of grossed out by Sucker Punch, and so Zack Snyder clarified that it’s actually a comment on sexism and the objectification of women. I mean, maybe he should’ve run a disclaimer at the beginning of the movie, you know, maybe it’s not totally clear that he spent $82,000,000 on Slutoween costumes and CGI to strike a blow for feminism, but he did, okay? It’s way subversive.”

“I think I have 300. Maybe I’ll pop that in tonight.”

“Whatever. I’m getting you Sucker Punch for Mother’s Day.”

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Melodie Ladner lives and works in the Greater Vancouver area, and is probably eating something unhealthful out of a bag at this very moment.

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7 Responses to “Sweeter than a Hertz donut”

  1. matt says:

    I’ll admit that I watched this movie specifically hoping for so bad it’s good, but didn’t quite manage to push past regular bad. Also: I now feel like I have way to much insight into Zack Snyder’s personal masterbatorial fantasies?

    That being said, this post BUSTED ME THE HELL UP.

    • Melodie says:

      Goddamn it, the first three things I wanted to say to this all give the ending away. You are tearing me apart, Matt Youngmark!

      • matt says:

        [spoiler] We actually do have a spoiler tag that you can use in your posts, which will hide a paragraph behind the word “spoiler” until the reader clicks on it, but apparently it doesn’t work in comments (or this one would be INVISIBLE).[/spoiler]

  2. Penni says:

    I want to watch this movie with your mom.

    • Melodie says:

      I must admit that I wouldn’t actually buy it for her, or even recommend it. The woman loves Kangaroo Jack, okay?

  3. kormantic says:

    I liked the part with the giant samurai. But. I feel like tihs movie is bad for the soul.

    I prefer it when men are objectified. More shirtless Michael Fassbender, please!

    • Melodie says:

      I will give you anything you might desire in exchange for you never talking to me about Michael Fassbender again. I mean that so hard!

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