Sucker Punch Spoilers Discussion

Published 4 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 8:08 am,

Sucker Punch Spoilers Sucker Punch Spoilers Discussion

While our readers are already discussing director Zack Snyder’s fantasy-action story of self-empowerment in the comments section of the Sucker Punch review, this is the place where you can discuss spoilers about the movie without worrying about ruining it for people who haven’t seen it yet.

To help steer discussion we’ve added an analysis of Sucker Punch to help clarify some of the details that left some moviegoers scratching their heads.

That said, Snyder does leave some elements of the film up for interpretation – making it impossible to answer everything with absolute certainty.

It goes without saying, this article is full of spoilers. So, if you still plan to see the film, and don’t want anything spoiled for you – look elsewhere.

Does our Sucker Punch explanation match your theory? Find out!

The Dream within a Dream

Following Babydoll’s arrival at the asylum, the film presents viewers with three realities:

  • The Asylum
  • The Burlesque Illusion
  • The Fantasy Realms

Despite the fact the majority of the movie is spent within the context of the burlesque reality, we know from the early images at the beginning, as well as the closing scene with the orderlies, that the dance setting was an illusion Babydoll (more on her later) developed to deal with the horrors of her actual environment.

It’s strongly hinted that the girls are being sexually abused by the orderlies and other employees at the asylum (most notably when the orderlies show reservations about allowing Blue to be alone with Babydoll after her lobotomy). The dark, and most logical, interpretation of the film suggests that Babydoll imagines herself “dancing” (and subsequently dispatching her oppressors in fantasy settings) whenever abuse is taking place, retreating into a world where she has increasing control over her oppressors – hypnotizing them with her dances (in the dancer illusion) and outright killing them (in the fantasy worlds).

After the first few “dances,” Babydoll begins to use this time with the abusers as a distraction, so that the other girls can go around and collect the necessary tools for the escape – essentially sacrificing her body for the sake of the mission – a theme which is revisited in the closing act of the film.

Sucker Punch Asylum Sucker Punch Spoilers Discussion

Are the other girls merely representations of different aspects of Babydoll’s psyche?

While it’s possible that, at one point, Snyder intended for Rocket (the little sister), Amber (the shy one), Blondie (the naive one), as well as Sweet Pea (the big sister), and even Babydoll herself (the fighter), to be avatar-like representations of various aspects of Babydoll’s personality – given what we see in the final film, there are a few problems with this theory.

First and foremost, Babydoll sees the girls in the real asylum world. It’s plausible that, as she began to fantasize, she merely superimposed the four girls’ visages onto the non-physical aspects of her own personality – i.e. visible avatar-like manifestations of abstract impulses. However, given the seriousness with which Snyder presents the real world in the closing moments of the film, it’s implied that the people in the fantasy world have a direct connection to people in the real world. Despite minor flourishes, Babydoll is directly interacting with the same people in the burlesque reality and the actual asylum: the burlesque cook is still the cook in the asylum, the burlesque Mayor is the custodian, the burlesque High Roller is the doctor – these people are not avatar-like representations of something abstract – they are rose-tinted filters placed on-top-of real people (who exist in a harsher reality). As a result, it stands to reason that the core girls are real people – real people that Babydoll is interacting with, not just in the fantasy world, but in reality as well.

Furthermore, it’s Sweet Pea who escapes the asylum in the real world, which would be an extremely unsatisfying ending, if there were no genuine connection between her character and Babydoll (who sacrifices her own freedom to make it happen). If the one psyche theory were correct, in a movie about guilt, oppression, and empowerment, it would have made much more sense for almost any of the other girls/personalties to have escaped, especially Rocket – the little sister that Babydoll was unable to save in real-life. Instead, it’s Sweet Pea who escapes – the same big sister who wasn’t able to protect her little sister.

It’s an interesting idea, with cool thematic implications but, given what we see in the final film, tangible evidence of the one psyche theory is either undermined by Sucker Punch‘s convoluted story-telling or other conflicting details.

Sucker Punch Fantasy World Sucker Punch Spoilers Discussion

What is the connection between the fantasy worlds and the reality of the asylum?

By the end of the film, Snyder makes it obvious that many of the events taking place in the dancer reality do have implications in the actual reality of the asylum. Dr. Vera Gorski mentions to the surgeon that prior to her lobotomy, Babydoll started a fire, stabbed an orderly, and successfully ensured Sweet Pea’s escape.

However, it remains unclear how involved the other girls were in the actual events in the asylum. Sweet Pea does successfully escape – which could indicate that Babydoll and the other girls were working together much in the same way as she imagined them in the burlesque club reality. That said, it’s unclear how much contact Babydoll actually had with the other girls, or how lucid any of them would have actually been (they all appeared pretty drugged up in the first scene at the asylum).

Similarly, assuming the girls were working as team, it’s still unclear whether or not Rocket, Blondie, and Amber died (as they did the burlesque reality), were lobotomized (like Babydoll), or were simply caught. Whether or not Snyder intended to leave this fact up for interpretation is unclear. Though, given the positive changes that seem to be promised for the asylum (as a result of Gorski’s revelation about Blue), it would make sense that whatever happened to the other girls – their fate wouldn’t be something that could easily be undone.

Continue reading the Sucker Punch spoiler analysis for our take on the Guardian Angel and who is in charge of the fantasies…

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  1. So is it true that all of them except Baby Doll die?

    • Baby Doll actually sacrifices herself so that Sweet Pea can escape.

      • Which was a good end. I tried imagining the movie where all of them escape, I couldn’t

        • You’re right. It needed to be a moral fable about sacrifice. Always best to sacrifice the virgins or the innocent in movies.

          • I feel it also had the moral that the only thing you truly need to be free of is your fear. After that anything is possible.

            • Brevity is the genius of wit. What you said is absolutely true, but once upon a time this crippled guy said it this way; “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.” Of course this is one of the world’s greatest mobius thoughts. After all, if we have no fear how can we fear our fear? So is it that so long as we have no fear of anything there isn’t any way for us to have fear to fear? I think this movie was a good fable about being brave against all odds and that some good will come from whatever you do, even if you seem to have failed. Babydoll was the classic martyr who sacrificed herself in a struggle and helped others. Sweetpea’s escape was not the only victory because Blue’s arrest saved countless other girls. Sort of like one woman going to jail because she won’t give up her seat on the bus eventually changing an entire nation. Hundreds or thousands of others could have taken the same stand before, but brave heroes are few. How many other girls could have brought down Blue’s reign of terror if they had just led a revolt. And there was also the classic regretful traitor who revealed the plan to the enemy (or led the Persians over the montain pass behind the Spartans). Stories (whether movies, novels, comic books or whatever) give us examples of who we should try to be or not be. They also teach us about failure and success, and that both are just part of life. Men plan – God laughs.

  2. Oh and was the scene with the dragon super epic? or was it one of the lackluster scenes?

    • I, personally, didn’t think the dragon scene was as cool as the first two (the Samurai and War scenes). The least impressive fantasy scene, for me, was the train sequence with the robots. It was too confined and over-did the slowdown cinematography.

      • Well that’s a bit disappointing.. Lol
        But anyways, one more question, when you say “over-did the slow down” was it more over done than the 300 scene when Leonidas was whooping ass before pushing the Persians over the cliff?

          • She “ends” happily in a sense thats its a sacrifice that she sees as more important than what she wants.

            and the final shot of the movie (before credits) is on a bus.

            • Sacrifice meaning she lets Sweetie pie go and herself get caught? She does in fact get lobotomized by High roller/Hamm? Who or what is on the bus in the last shot? Does the evil Stepfather get ANY sorta punsihment for all his doings? his ounds good but I know I wil have trouble stomaching in alone in a movie theater, I will maybe get the dvd or blu ra ythough where I can watch it at my leisure.

              • The stepfather doesn’t get punished. And this movie is about visual impact so to really apprciate it you should see it im IMAX. There is so much detail it needs a large screen, and the score is one of the best parts of the movie and the IMAX sound system helps you feel the movie. No reason not to see this movie alone. It doesn’t have the blood splatter of 300.

                • Stepfather is punished, tho off screen. As blue the orderly is being dragged away, we gives up the stepfather to the police.

                  • So we surmise the stepfather will be punished, but we never see it. He may be rich enough to avoid it. He now inherits whatever the dead Mom left in her will to Babydoll and her sister. Maybe Sweetpea goes after him in the sequel?

  3. So I need peoples’ opinion. A friend of mine is dead set saying that it is sweet peas fantasy world and not baby dolls. Is it not baby dolls fantasy worlds?

    • It’s Babydoll’s fantasy world. Twilight Zone did a similar story where a condemned man lives out an escape fantasy between the moment the hangman pulls the lever and his neck breaks at the end of the drop. Babydoll’s Mom died, she killed her sister trying to avenge her, so she was ready to leave this world. Visually a fantastic movie. Had the same sort of “make of it what you will” quality also in 2001 and The Wall.

      • Its a collective fantasy that you see through the eyes of Baby Doll

        • Never heard of a “collective fantasy.” This is all Babydoll. She spends 4 days in a nuthouse, steals some stuff, starts a fire, helps someone escape, stabs an orderly, and in the instant before her brain bets icepicked she mentally turns where she is into a dancehall/whorehouse and turns what she’s done into flights of fantasy. The girls she interacted with during those 4 days turn up in her fantasies, but they are her fantasies. Mr. Snyder supposes a lot of bizarre stuff, but people getting together in a dream is even beyond his stretch of imagination. Supposing 3 of the girls in a “collective fantasy” would off themselves is beyond supposing people can have communal dreams. Babydoll’s life went wrong, but by helping someone else escape, her sacrifice gave her life worth.

          • The “theater” parts are how she sees the mental hospital. Whenever something happens in the mental hospital, she sees it as a Theater/club situation.

            Within that theater world is her dancing. The action scenes of her dancing are very similar to the first level (Thats right, a fantasy in a fantasy, as if we didnt already have Inception).

            What i mean is that The action scenes are how the robberies are carried out. We see it as Baby Doll interprets it, but that doesnt matter. They could all interpret it as their own unique action scene in their mind. Thats why its a collective fantasy

            • I don’t believe Baby Doll was lobotomized. I believe that she was faking in order to catch blue.

              • interesting theory

              • You can’t fake being lobotomized…either the dr lobotomized her or he didnt and since the Psychiatrist didn’t find out Nlue forged her signature until AFTER he lobotomized her, I think your theory is incorrect

              • I’m with you on this. Shouldn’t she have had a hole in her head, bloody nose, missing an eye or something if he really drove that stainless thing into her brain somehow???

            • Watch it again. We see all the characters and the 4 quest objects when Babydoll enters the asylum in her reality. This isn’t Inception or Dallas where everthing is just a dream. The “Polish therapy” in the asylum stage room is discussed and Babydoll sees Sweetpea. When the lobotomy probe is placed so the doctor can drive it through her sinuses and into her brain, her mind breaks and we go into her fantasy and relive the time she spent trying to escape from the asylum. Her mind turns it into a brothel where she dances and escapes into other fantasies. Her escape attempt failed and we snap back to reality as the doctor drives the probe through her brain. Read Mr. Snyder’s screenplay. This is a movie seen through the mind of Babydoll. Her Mom died, Stepfather brutalized her, she accidentally killed her sister, and she wound up in a nuthouse knowing she would be lobotomized in 4 days so Stepdad could get away with his crimes. She tries to escape – fails – and goes nuts. Thus the fantasy method of reliving her escape attempt and interactions with the people in the asylum. But her sad life and her sacrifice frees someone else. This is a moral fable about sacrifice. Leonidis died to save the Greeks. Babydoll died to save Sweetpea. (See a theme?) The guardian angel (first thing narrated) keeps Sweetpea free so Babydoll’s sacrifice is not wasted. Everything from the moment the probe touches Babydoll until it is hammered in (most of the movie) is in Babydoll’s mind.

              • I got that, but in the end her face looked perfect with no show of the forced trauma if she really was lobotomized. No way she would have looked like that if he really did it.

                • You lift the eyelid and hammer the probe through a thin part of the skull into the brain. Nothing outward is visible.

                  • Wouldn’t she bleed?

                    • Some, but most runs into the frontal sinuses and eventually down the back of the throat because the eye lid flap is over the puncture. There would also be bleeding into the brain cavity, but nothing serious. Punctures, like a nail through the hand, don’t bleed like slice injuries. When the puncture object is removed the swelling tissues subdue the bleeding quite a bit.

                • Lobotomy was a surgery popular in the 1950s after it was made popular by Egas Moniz. The procedure is actually simple and does not involve removing a piece of the brain. In fact the practice was so easy that there were manuals written for doctors to practice the procedure in their own practices. Also it was often an outpatient procedure meaning there was no hospital stay following it.

              • I have one question for your theory, if all of Baby Doll’s fantasy happened in an instant starting just before the Lobotomy tools were inserted, how was she able to start fires, stab people and help Sweet Pea escape in a split second? My theory is this:

                Ok. I’ll break it down for you. The fantasy was Sweet Pea’s all along. Remember when Babydoll entered the theater and Sweet Pea was on stage. Dr. Gorski was helping her cope with her insanity by letting her use her imagination to act out her reality. At that very moment we as the audience see a transformation in the movie where reality becomes fantasy. Sweet Pea actually comes over to Babydoll and anounces that she (Sweet Pea) is the star of the show. It couldn’t be Babydoll’s fantasy at that moment because she had just arrived and had not been introduced to Dr. Gorski’s method of therapy. From this point forward you will notice that we are never taken back to reality until the end of the movie. Yes all that stuff happened to babydoll. Her mother died, she accidentally killed her sister, she went insane, her stepfather arranged for her to have a labotomy, and eventualy she did get a labotomy. That was her reality. Everything else that happened in the movie was part of Sweet Pea’s fantasy world. All of the other girls were just pawns in her story. That’s why Sweet Pea escaped.”

          • finally someone else understands the plot!!!!

            • My questions are, what happened to the other girls in reality? Were they really helping her? Could everyone in the brothel and fantasies just be in her head even though they really exist in the asylum but didn’t help at all? Sort of like the wizard of oz. The lion, scarecrow, tin man, wizard, witch, etc. were in dorothy’s dream, but none of them realy did anything in reality of the sort. Maybe sweatpea escaping didn’t happen and babydoll used that to find comfort right before she lobotomized? Maybe babydoll did ALL the item snatching, escape attempting, on her own. She could just be using remembered assets (the girls she remembers most) to reconstruct the failed escape attempt during her final-mental-breakdown-comfort-seeking-prelobotomy session leading to her mentally constructing sweatpea’s escape to give anything some sort of meaning? Would explain the last narration of the movie where it’s all black. “it’s you” meaning she was freed by herself even though she imagined someone else escaping. could also be supported by her telling sweatpea, it’s better this way. maybe she thought she couldn’t cope with the outside world after what’s happened to her. maybe the little boy and the bus driver help support sweatpea not escaping. the little boy may be a “totem (for lack of a better term)” to let you know him being on the bus means that scene is not real.

              just finished watching it for the first time a few hours ago, really enjoyed it, don’t understand the horrible reviews it’s getting! please help me tear this thing apart to get a better theory.’

              • Well that’s not exactly true. In Wizard of Oz, all the characters are part of her Oz dream that she has while unconscious and all of the characters did things in reality that made her dream them the way they were. Farmhand Zeke is scared to death when Dorothy falls in the pigpen; he’s the cowardly lion. Hickory acts like he doesn’t care that much about Dorothy; he’s the Tin Man. Hunk tries to tell everyone all his ideas about things and sounds dumb; he’s the scarecrow. Dorothy gets her fortune told by Professor Marvel; he’s the wizard (along with 4 other characters in Emerald City). Elmira Gulch is mean and tries to have Toto killed; she’s the witch of the east that gets killed by the house (as well as the witch of the west). So they DO all do things in her dream like in reality. SAme with Sucker Punch.

                • yes, the character traits of the imagined world are representations from the real world. but no one in either movie carried out such fanciful acts in reality. i’m just questioning if anyone actually helped her in reality. upon further reading (i need another viewing of the movie too) that the doctor/nurse said she helped another inmate escape. so that shows things were going on in reality.

                  thanks for the input though :)

                  • Remember that all of the fantasies happen in the instant just before she is lobotomized. Just like with Dorothy in Oz, Babydol’s mind constructs fantasies about things that ahppened in the recent past. Of course no one carries out fanciful acts – they carry out ordinary acts, if trying to escape from an asuylum can be considered ordinary. Zeke’s fear at Dorothy pigpen fall becomes fantasized as all of the Cowardly Lion’s cowardly acts. In Oz we see the events that become Dorothy’s fantasies. We don’t see what acts by the other characters become Babydoll’s fantasies. But we do see Babydoll and Sweetpea lock eyes as Babydol first enters the asylum auditorium. It was just a 2 hour movie. They cut out the other girls’ dances and the love scene between Babydoll and the High Roller too. We are left to imagine the ordinary events that went on as the girls tried to acquire the items to escape the asylum. But we are able to imagine those events. There was no way to imagine the fabulous movie scenes Mr. Snyder concocted. Steampunk Nazis! The B24 versus a dragon dogfight! Orcs! Stop the bomb laden train before it reeaches the city via air assault on robots! That did smack of one Batman scene, but the trained crimefighter did succeed where the teen girls failed, so I’ll go with it. I hope there’s a Director’s Cut. But you can aways download the screenply for more insight.

      • Twilight Zone was ripping of Ambrose Bierce’s “An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge”

        • Twilight Zone did not rip off An Occurrance at Owl Creek Bridge. They bought the rights to show the movie in America on tv. They did not remake it, they showed the French film.

  4. I liked it. The storyline was very good if you didnt accept the fantasy as reality (the theater fantasty, not the fight scenes). The cinematography was amazing. The visuals may have been par with Watchmen and LOTR without adding much, the it wisely used some great visual tricks that are so smooth, people wouldnt realize those are effects.

    The characters may have been one dimentional but (i think)they are suppose to be combined as one main character, which worked.

    I enjoyed the movie, and if you didnt like it, i can see why. We could all just agree that this movie has many different levels of comprehension that everyone sees differently. And i truly think thats the kind of movie Zach Snyder wanted to make here.

    Thats all i have to say about that.

  5. Does blue get killed? How does each girl die? Is the movie a total bummer? What exactly happens to Baby doll after she lets the sweetie go? I am not againts dark endings I was just shocked at the spoilers of how dark it seems to be.

    • Blue, the orderly, got arrested; caught kissing the lobotamized Babydoll. Rocket is stabbed by the cook, which might have been close to reality, but the other 2 are shot by Blue/the orderly, which were probably fantasized events because guns probably don’t show up a lot inside nutnouses. There’s no guarantee any of the girls were killed because all those events were depicted in the fantasy scenes. If you ever watch the movie again you’ll see it change from reality to fantasy the moment Babydoll finds herself in a whorehouse and not in a nuthouse. It returns to reality the moment the probe is hammered into her brain. This movie is for folks who use the right side of their brain more. Left brain folks like more lineazr stories. This movie is totally creative, even down to being about what Babydoll creates in her brain.

      • Wow! Blue kisses lobotmized Babydoll? Creepy. Wow, sounds dark and grim but still maybe worth watching now that I hear some deatails of just what I will be getting into. Thanx.

      • I think they were all real, after all Sweet Pea obviously existed in real life, therefore being an advocate that it wasn’t all in Babydoll’s imagination. After all she did actually stab Blue, implying that he did try to rape her in the real world. Plus there were other signs, the fire in the closet, the odd look on the cook. But it was a fitting end to the story. I wish that Rocket Amber and Blondie hadn’t died, but when I tried to imagine the story with all of them escaping, I realized it didn’t work.

        • oh, also, when she went into the Theatre in real life it showed all of them sitting at that one table, except for Sweet Pea who was on the page.

          • *stage

        • Absolutely all were real. The orderly with the lighter becomes the mayor. The head orderly becomes the head of the brothel, Blue. The lobotomy doctor (Hamm) becomes the high roller. We just didn’t get to see the reality of the interactions while Babydoll was trying to escape, we only saw her fantay version just before she gets an icepick through the brain. Sort of like your life flashing before your eyes just before you die. It was just a 2 hour movie so we got to see her flashing through a out-of-her-mind, terrified teen girl, fantasized version of the last 4 days of her life distilled down to the events around the quest objects; map, fire, knife, key. And Rod Serling did the exact same thing in a Twilight Zone episode but only had one fantasy level. Babydoll had fantasies in her fantasies. Fantasy brothel girls become fantasy strike team when Babydoll dances in the fantasy brothel. Loved this movie.

          • “out-of-her-mind, terrified teen girl”
            She wasn’t a teen girl, she was 20.

            • Semantics? Really? EighTEEN, ninTEEN, but somehow one more birthday makes her a wise, experienced, combat trained woman of the world? “Teen girl” is descriptive, not some legal boundary. And where do you say a girl stops being a teen? If she can’t legally be called an adult for the sake of drinking booze or carrying a concealed firearm, isn’t twenty still a teen? What term do you want to use? Post- teen? Pre-adult? She wasn’t a child? She had been living in her Mother’s home with her little sister so she wasn’t an adult by any stretch of the imagination. So I used teen. So, if she wasn’t a teen, what was she?

          • Loved it too, it was like Inception on crack with swords, nazis, and hot actresses.

        • directly before Babydoll is lobotomized it clearly shows that all the burlesque escape scenes were true, The mayor/doorman raps the window with an empty hand where before the burlesque scene he used his lighter, cleverly printed with a red dragon,as babydoll saw this upon her arrival she could construct the dragon scene within her mind (whilst presumeably being sexually assaulted by the mayor/doorman as the erotic dances scenes are a fantasy reconstruction of the sexual assault endured by babydoll in reality). As babydoll progresses towards the lobotomy room she passes the cook who reaches for his empty knife sheath, this along with blue’s stab wound confirm that the knife was stolen, and as blue attempts to rape babydoll in the stabbing burlesque scene it can be assumed that blue was stabbed during the similar events in the reality setting. The closet is burnt out which confirms that the escape was real. BEcause the burnt out closet along with other objects appear in both reality and burlesque settings it can be assumed that all events happening in the burlesque setting happened the same in the reality. Whilst each object was obtained babydoll distracts each man with her “erotic dance” this can be interpreted as sexual assault in the reality setting.

          so to finish, the escape scenario was carried out in the reality simultaniously whilst the burlesque scene was being enacted. the burlseque scene is merely a construction of babydolls enterpretation of the events, ie. a brighter enactment of the series of events, although still harsh much more glamourous then the reality scene,

          sweetpea escapes in the reality realm with the help of the” guardian angel” a construction of babydoll’s who helps her plot the escape.

          babydoll merely masks the true evnts with a burlesque reenactement for self amusement and finds self satisfaction before the lobotomy that sweet pea escapes.

  6. What is the last shot of a bus showing? Who is on the bus and what going on?

    • Sweetiepie is on the bus going home, with the guardian angel driving it.

  7. What happens wit hthe pink bunny mech? I know it is the little sisters toy? Does that all connect somehow?

  8. So did Baby Doll accidentally shoot her sister or did her stepfather kill her? Also, didn’t Blue forge the signature for Baby Doll to get Lobotomized, because he acted like he was mad that she was oblivious to him after that.

    • Babydoll shot her. Blue did get paid by the stepfather to forge the signature and get Babydoll lobotomized, but apparently during the 4 days she was in the asylum he went nuts.

  9. so are the deaths bloody?

    • No. Even the zombie Nazis are steampowered so only steam comes ou when they’re slaughtered. This has none of the blood splatter of 300.

      • how does each girl die

        • Rocket is stabbed by the cook, Amber is shot by Blue, Blue kills Blondie for being a snitch, Babydoll and Sweet Pea carry through with the plan but only Sweet Pea escapes and Babydoll is lobotomized and Blue is arrested for trying to rape her.

  10. I can only hope that the studio producing Superman fires Taylor NOW before it is too late. His desire to “reboot” Superman will end up sticking a boot up Kal El’s *ss!

  11. You all are talking about the fantasy characters that Babydoll dreams of are real when they are in fact just another fantasy in a fantasy.
    The four girls are just four different representations of what Babydoll is. Sweetpea does not actually escape in reality, just the second fantasy world. There is no correlation of two different people’s fantasy intertwining. And if they did intertwine, then Synder did a horrible job showing it and needs to watch Inception.

    We all knew that the visual effects were going to be the bomb, no doubt, hands down, but the story was just blah. Didn’t leave me caring about the characters because there was no actual character development. Also, what girl in the right mind would fantasize about being in a whore house right before the frontal lobe of her brain is being butchered? Seriously. Female empowerment was false advertisement. This is definitely a fan boy’s porno because it is targeted towards that group of audience.
    -just sayin’

    • Sweet Pea does escape, Dr. Gorski says so in the real reality that Baby Doll helped a patient escape in the week that she was there. And she fantasizes about being in the whore house because the asylum was too painful for her but she still needed to be in a place that was bad enough for her to want to escape from it.

    • Babydoll sees Sweetiepie when she first enters the asylum. When the film is baack to reality in the asylum the doctor (fantasy dance instructor) says she helped someone escape. The wise man is the bus driver in the escape reality to represent the guardian angel the naarrative discusses at the beginning. Sweetiepie and the other girls were no more fantasy representations of Babydoll in her own mind than the orderly (fantasy Blue) or the female doctor (fantasy dance instructor) or the doctor (Hamm/fantasy high roller) were. She interacted with people for 4 days in the asylum and in the moment before she is lobotomized we watch what her mind turns those 4 days into as she tried to escape. She fantasized she had been in a brothel and in that fantasy had fantasies about the adventures to find the 4 objects (map, fire, knife, key). The movie is a mind trip into insanity the way Pink Floyd’s The Wall was. Young girl, Mom dies, brutalized by stepfather, accidentally kills sister, windw up in a hellhole asylum knowing she’s going to have her brain stabbed in 4 days. Too much, mind shaps when the lobotomy probe is about to be hammered in. It’s all inside her mind in the last moment before the hammer strikes. Rod Serling did this in Twilight Zone with a man about to be hanged who has an escape fantasy in the last instant of his life. The twist here is there are fantasies within fantasies.

      Loved the music.

    • It’s definitely not everybody’s cup of tea, but I feel I have to say: I am a woman and a feminist and I found this film empowering.
      It’s also worth mentioning that I’m an action-flick fan who’s been desensitized to the “girls with guns” trope over the years.

      The way I read it: the skimpy action-girl attire was Babydoll taking back her own agency and sexuality (as well as those of the other girls) throughout the fantasy sequences.
      The whore-house was an alternate representation of Babydoll’s imprisonment – easier for her to face than the reality of her impending lobotomy, but still brutal and unwanted.

      If the film were only supposed to appeal to fanboys, I doubt it would have touched on serious issues such as rape, abuse, wrongful incarceration, murder, etc. In fact, those parts of the movie made the gang of bros sitting behind my boyfriend and I in the theater distinctly uncomfortable.

      Again, I can see why you and many other women might not have felt that connection to the film, but I am one woman who did feel empowered, which I hope counts for something.

  12. Yeah, yeah. I know her name is Sweet Pea but it’s Sweetiepie in my fantasy world.

  13. Is it at all possible that Baby-Doll is just Sweet-Pea’s mentally conjured up alter-ego? I love all the theories and just thought I’d throw that out there. The similarity of the name Sweet-Pea to Baby Doll…like a mom would call her daughters, as opposed to Amber, Blondie, and Rocket. The characters over all interaction with each other was really just the three…Sweet Pea, Baby Doll, and Rocket. Finally I think the lobotomy at the end was fatal…Sweet Pea getting on that bus with the Angel and the boy from the war scene heading to heaven perhaps? Thats what’s been going on in my head. Liked the movie a lot!

    • A. I know it was a great movie right? B. you are totally right, there IS character development, but only between those three, and Amber a little. I think that while there wasn’t much character development, it was done well when it appeared.

  14. IF Sweetpea escaped in what seems to be reality, how is the viewer so sure that it was ‘Reality’ and not another layer of fantasy/dream similar to Inception.
    (The ending of Inception was entirely a dream for DiCaprio’s character.)

    Also, I don’t see how Sweetpea could have possibly escaped with the help of Babydoll if everything in the movie was in her fantasy. That still leaves the question open: How did the two fantasies intertwined if Sweetpea really did escaped and the doctor mentioned it to Babydoll? Someone care to explain? The story was just too blah for my taste.

    • The whorehouse fantasy was Babydoll’s way of interpreting what actually happened in the Asylum, most likely they DID all try to escape, Rocket, Amber and Blondie DID get killed, and Sweetpea DID escape since Dr. Gorski said in the real world that Babydoll helped another inmate escape. Everything that happened in the Whorehouse DID happen, it was just dramatized by Babydoll’s imagination because she probably felt she had more control in a brothel than an asylum

  15. How does Blondie and Amber because like rocket gets stabbed in realife and sweet pea escapes but i mean they dont explain how Blondie and amber die.

    • Rocket gets stabbed in fantasy because they’re wearing their brothel clothes and makeup.

      • but she also died in real life because remember Gorski said Babydoll halped an inmate (sweet pea) escape, and since that inmate (sweet pea) would refuse to leave Rocket behind unless she was dead, we must assume Rocket was in fact stabbed.

        • Yes. Rocket gets stabbed in fantasy – we don’t see how she was stabbed in reality – we only see the fantasy version of it. The other 2 girls also died in reality, but we only see the fantasy version of their deaths. They may have been gunned down outside the asylum, but they were not shot by an orderly toting a 45 around inside the place.

          • obviously, otherwise that orderly would’ve been arrested much earlier. Grrr. I hated Blue

          • obviously, otherwise that orderly would’ve been arrested much earlier. So we are both agreed that they DID die in real life. Grrr. I hated Blue.

  16. Im curious…does anyone else think she was lobotimized in the beginning and the whole middle was a flash back (in her fantasy version) and then the end picks back up right after she was lobotimized? That all seems so conviluted but its what my husband thinks…I just wonder if anyone else saw it that way?

    • Close. All of the fantasy occurs in the moment just before she’s lobotomized. I’s where her mind takes her to avoid the reality of the events leading up to and including the lobotomy. Rod Serling did the exact same thing in a Twilight Zone episode of a soldier being hanged. His fantasy occurs as he drops with the noose around his neck.

  17. The movie felt like it was supposed to be for men. Explosions, Dragons, guns, girls in skimpy outfits. Sick music. A Mech… (All awesome stuff)
    But then every other scene was girls crying over something…

    They did however follow the rule of: Everything looks better in slow motion.
    Director (Opon hearing about all the fight scenes) : “Oh, theres supposed to be a fight scene here? I see the writers forgot to spesify that it is a slow motion fight scene. I will just correct it.”

    Although, they forgot about the rule of common sence.

    Eg1. Thinking you have to have a lighter to start a fire. Burners in the kitchen, light bulbs in the dressing room. Even a frayed cable lying in a pool of some sort of red liquid probably could have done the trick.

    Eg2. Lighting the fire 3 feet from both a fire alarm and a fire extinguisher. Could have just pulled the alarm and then have people running around trying to find a non-exsistant fire. Could have started the fire somewhere where a fire extinguisher is not. Good for her and not feeding that blonde sterotype thing.

    Eg3. Thinking one knife to five girls is a good idea. I suppose the other four girls will just have to dance thier way out of physical confrontations, thats been going well for them thus far… right?

    Eg4. Assuming the cook has only two knives.

    Eg5. After having aquired said knife, the cook (only having two knives in the entire kitchen) gets angry and reaches for his second knife.
    No one thought In the three seconds it took for the cook to reach for his knife and take a stab at ‘Baby’
    “Hm, that is a moderatly large man, with a moderatly large knife. He looks angry that we took his knife. Perhaps we should atempt to restrain him? After all, there are five of us and only one of him. He is seated, and we have a knife of our own.”
    Nahhh. But the girl half way accross the room realises whats happning and I guess, leaps accross the room, and takes a knife in the gut.
    While the girl HOLDING THE KNIFE, inches away from the cook, does nothing.

    Eg6. Not realising that something large and metal would be as effective as a knife, and half as hard to find.

    Eg7. Double tap. One knife stab two the gut is a one shot kill. One stab to the shoulder is not. Also. Why, after having gone to so much work to get the knife. Abandon it after one use?

    It felt like a long trailer for what is going to be a ( or should be) a sweet video game.

    I liked the part where the mayor walked in.

    • Josh O, you nailed it. lol But all in all it was a pretty good movie.

    • Are you for real?

      Eg1. Start a fire with a filament? That’s a skill all teen girls have. Light a torch in the kitchen and just wander around an asylum with it? Duh. Electrical spark in gasoline? Store lots of gasoline or other flammable liquids inside nuthouses do they? And the fire was not a distractions but to get all of the doors to automatically open. Worked great. Babydoll read that sign when she first entered the asylum. It’s called foreshadowing when telling a story. Just like giving us a glimpse of the lighter, the map, and the key as she’s walking in.

      Eg2. Janitors closet seems like a good place to start a fire to me if it’s near or on the way to the automatically-in-case-of-fire opening door you want to pass through.

      Eg3. One sharp knife against a dozen unarmed people is great odds for the knife holder. Look into hand-to-hand combat training.

      Eg4. Inside a nuthouse there would be as few knives as possible. 2 for the cook sounds proper. Look into how sharp objects are controlled in penal institutions. The inmates who work in jail and prison kitchens sign out knives if their job requires one.

      Eg5. Get in a knife fight before you claim what people will do in a knife fight. It’s not like on tv – not at all. A knife fight is primal and violent beyond imagining. Nobody thinks. It’s all instinct and it’s usually impossible to remember, much less weight decisions on what to do during the event.

      Eg6. Threaten someone with the world’s largest metal softball bat and they won’t back down. Threaten someone with any size knife and they will back down. A blunt object blow might feel like Tyson or Holyfield clobbered you, but that’s nowhere near as frightening as being slashed across any body part with even a box cutter. People have hijacked airplanes with tiny knives. Inmates don’t make blunt objects – they make shanks – that means knives. They can walk all over the prison with them. Can’t quite do that with a 3 foot long piece of 2 inch angle iron.

      Eg7. Stab wounds to the gut are not fatal until quite some time has passed (except in movies and on tv). Ride half an hour in a helicopter watching some walking-wounded guy hold his blasted out intestines in his helmet in his lap and you’ll get it. And faced with self-defense and having no hand-to-hand training you will stab anywhere – even the shoulder if it’s what you can reach or just happens to be what you penetrate when you strike out at your attacker. After the first stab strikes flesh, the feel is so revolting to teen girls who have never stabbed anyone, they are unable to stab again. Stick 4 or 5 inches of blade into another human and you’ll get it. Several quick upward thrusts just below the sternum to puncture the heart are how to kill instantly with a knife. Stabbing the brain would be fatal almost every time, but the skull is too hard to penetrate so it’s not a good choice. Most people are too civilized and squeemish to fight violently anyway. It’s like people who are mauled by dogs because they can’t get the dog off their arm or leg. Just stick your free hand fingers in the dogs eyes and the attack is over immediately. But it’s repugnant so most people can’t do it. Works the same with human attackers. Stick your thumb into your attacker’s eye to the back of the socket and he’ll let go and spend as long as it takes for the ambulance to arrive screaming and thrashing around on the ground. Even works on large sharks swimming up to bite scuba divers. Pull out your divers tool (that means knife) and stab the shark through an eye. Shark goes away. Been there, done all this. Most civilized people don’t know how to defend themselves. It’s why so many people are murdered with their own guns. They point it but won’t pull the trigger – and the attacker takes it away and kills them with it. Do some research. So the teen girl (Babydoll) in this movie just did her best and failed.

      You fight like you train. Teen girls (Babydoll and the rest) never trained how to start fires, escape captivity, or knife fight. They performed poorly like most people attempting anything for the first time.

      You said the movie forgot about common sense. Nothing common about needing to escape from a nuthouse as a teen girl.

      • best comment i’ve seen for this movie on the entire net so far!

      • Alien,

        Let me get this straight, you’ve ridden in a helicopter with a grunt holding his guts in his helmet, you’ve killed someone with a sharp thrust of a knife just below the sternum, AND you’ve stabbed an attacking shark in the eye?

        Wow, and I thought we were musing upon baby doll’s fantasies in this discussion – who knew?

  18. Who is this “boy” that is in the war scene and in the last scene on the bus? I don’t recall seeing him.

    • What boy do you mean? Are you asking about the Scott Glen character? If so, he was the guardian angel we hear about as the first narration begins. As an angel he existed in real life and in Babydoll’s fantasies. Angels can walk with your soul if need be. Driving a bus or showing up in dreams or fantasies are easy compared to that. They are the messengers of God. Think they have any boundaries?

    • During the war scene after the girls are debriefed by the guardian angel they start walking thru the trenches and Sweet Pea stops and looks down at a soldier. She pulls his helmet back and it is a young boy who looks quite frightened. Then in the last scene when she is getting on the bus the boy in front of stops on the steps and looks back her. It is the same boy

      • I can’t tell, and I saw it a second time and tried to find a boy character anywhere else. The boy soldier may have just been Babydoll’s mind conjuring up her idea of who was sent into war. The boy at the bus might have just been a boy getting on a bus. It could be that something more in the original version of the film about a boy had to be cut out of the film for time constraints.

        Good catch though. I totally ignored both boys because every important male in Babydoll’s reality and her fantasies were evil (except the Scott Glenn character).

  19. Geeeezzzz… I must be getting Altzheimery, but does anyone remember what the word was that was engraved on the key that Blue was wearing that unlocked the doors?

    • Saw it Thursday night at midnight so I’ve forgotten also. But this is gonna make a great trivia question.

      • mt. pleasant

        • Thanks, strange that I just couldn’t remember that! …even now.

  20. It was AWESOME!

    End of…

  21. There’s a lot of point missing going on. The whole thing is a fantasy from beginning to end. There is never a real world. The times Blue shows up as the dapper pimp in the HOSPITAL proove that. The storyteller is S.P. and it’s ALL burlesque fantasy. B.D. never meets the bus driver, how can he be in her worlds?

    • Yes, it’s all fantasy because it’s a MOVIE. But the events up to the point where the lobotomy probe is placed before Babydoll’s eye, and the events following the hammer strike that plunges the probe into her brain are the movie’s supposed reality. All else is fantasy concocted by Babydoll’s mind to relive the events of the days spent in the asylum. Blue never shows up in the hospital as the pimp. The moustache that appears on him in fantasy establishes reality from fantasy. And whenever he appears with the moustache the girls have leotards, hose, lots of makeup and they are always in the brothel with Madam Gorski, not Doctor Gorski of the hospital. In the reality portions, Babydoll’s dress is a typical institution garment. Whenever she’s in fantasy it’s a sailor suit of some sort – some with a simple sailor collar, some elaborate costumes.
      This movie is a remake of “An Occurrance at Owl Creek Bridge,” a french film that was a Cannes film festival prize winner and won an Oscar for best short film. Rod Serling bought the American rights and broadcast it as a Twilight Zone episode on February 24, 1964, and you can bet Zack Snyder has seen it. Mr. Snyder goes one step farther by adding fantasies within fantasies, but it is born from a supposed reality that shows what a person’s mind can do at the moment imminent death looms, otherwise there’s no reason to give a damn about the characters. This movie is also similar to what Dorothy conjurs up in her mind in The Wizard of Oz after she’d bumped on the head – recent events by real people becoming fantasy events by fantasy people – and the change from black and white to color clearly defines which is which (thought where the flying moneys come from is a mystery to me). The reality of Sucker Punch is set in the 1950’s and there is not a single extraordinary event in those scenes except for the appearance of the Scott Glenn character as the guardian angel driving the bus. But being a guardian angel (the opening narration) he can appear in dreams or in reality, no matter whose they are.
      The opening scene where the Warner Brothers logo is on the stage curtain and then we step off into Babydoll’s reality bedroom at home is no more a fantasy than the opening scene of Raiders of the Lost Ark where the Paramount logo mountain becomes the mountain in the background behind Indiana. Both are just slick transitions from movie titling to story content. The Sucker Punch movie title being written by the rain on the car window does not establish those events as fantasy either – it was just a cool way and time to put in the movie title.
      This is a movie about someone’s descent into insanity. We see the causes – Mom dies, accidentally killed sis, stepfather’s brutality, 5 days in the asylum knowing you’re only waiting to be lobotomized – and at the final moment her mind whisks her away. Pink Floyd’s The Wall was a similar movie except the insanity is caused by sex, drugs and rock and roll. Sucker Punch is not an original story plot. Few movies ever are. Forbidden Planet was Shapespeare’s “The Tempest.” Half the chick flicks ever made are Romeo and Juliet with different clothes. “Alien” was the 1950’s “It,The Terror From Beyond Space.” But Sucker Punch uses the plot in an interesting, entertaining way, and the visuals alone are worth the price of admission.
      The subtle changes from reality to fantasy to more fantasy and back again are too much for the average person educated in public schools in the last 30 years. The art of this film is similarly beyond many people of similar assets. Odd, if a CD sells a million copies it’s a smash hit, but if a movie only sells a million tickets it’s a flop. Sucker Punch has done about $20 million so far and has a favorable audience rating over 60%. That means over one million people liked it. Just because more people liked some other movie doesn’t make this movie bad. It’s just a matter of taste, but in America we like to treat everything like it’s a sport so we can keep score and declare winners and losers. I doubt most of those people understand Sucker Punch the way a film buff might, but who cares. You don’t have to understand art to know you like a particular painting or photograph.
      But have no doubt, this movie means to show what happens to a real character – Babydoll – because of real things that happen to her in real life and how her mind deals with them. Her mind whisks her away so she won’t have to endure one too many horrors, that being the horror of being lobotomized, which can be described as walking death. It was a venue to take the moviegoer to all sorts of wondrous places to watch all sorts of exciting things. And it moralizes about the tremendous value in life of sacrificing for others. It’s about a hero – Babydoll.
      Babydoll was as real as Dorothy, Pinkie, or the Confederate soldier in An Occurrance at Owl Creek Bridge in the realm of movie characters. This was art in storytelling form, and it was about a supposed real person so we would care.

      Your move.

      • I retire the board.

        This movie isn’t worth arguing about, ESPECIALLY on the internet.

        • You said Blue showing up as the pimp in the hospital proved it was all fantasy. That did not happen in the movie. Faced with fact you decided to take your ball and go home. I don’t understand. If “this movie isn’t worth arguing about,” why did you post your comment saying there was “a lot of point missing going on” to begin with? I’m not arguing, I’m discussing. But I rely on the best facts I have at the time, and an education about films and experience in film making. If I say something and learn I have erred, then I adit my error, evaluate my opinion based on the new facts, and continue the discussion. Maybe next time you shouldn’t state a position, especially one telling so many people how wrong they are, unless you’re prepared to defend it if someone disagrees. Just a suggestion.

        • Thanks. I actually believe Babydoll’s fate made the movie, though I too hated what happened to her. But from a moviemaking standpoint, I tire of so many and-they-lived-happily-ever-after tales. That’s what Disney’s for.

          Sucker Punch could be dissected to have many moral lessons, like (1) if you’re going to do something – do it (“There is no try. Do,” so says Yoda). Babydoll tried to shoot her stepfather, missed, should have kept on shooting. But with the stepfather dead it would have been a different story. (2) Don’t give in to hate. Babydoll shot at the stepfather during a fit of anger and killed sis instead (she had turned to the dark side). Wasn’t it interesting that in her fantasies Babydoll was a great marksman with the same 45 and never looked emotional when fighting? (3) Traitors are the lowest form of life. Even Blue hated Blondie for turning on her friends. That particular story line goes all the way back to Judas. (4, 5, 6 . . .) And on and on.

          It’s a shame the critics are tearing this movie up, but there’s a class of individuals who tend to become movie critics or journalists in general. They don’t really appreciate the worth of the struggle of the individual, and they don’t understand hero tales. The presence of guns in any movie would also subconciously turn a lot of critics against this movie because they, “don’t believe in guns.” Whenever I hear that I ask in return, “So you don’t think guns exist?” and then they state a position of, “don’t believe in USING guns,” so I ask if they’re glad police and soldiers carry guns, and then they resort to name calling. Even great movie makers bow down to this anti-gun mentality. Watch Jurassic Park and notice you only hear guns being fired, you never actually see a person use one. Sort of like the FCC rules that allow beer advertising on TV but it is illegal to actually show someone drinking beer during a beer commercial. They treat us like we’re idiotic children. And a lot of us are. Just read most of what’s posted on the internet.

          Sucker Punh was great at being what it was supposed to be – the type of movie that is to movies what comic books are to books. Storytelling is how we teach. And I guarantee you Spiderman comics had an impact on more American children than War and Peace did. Sucker Punch teaches some good lessons, like the good guys don’t always win – but good will prevail eventually.

          But who cares? It was just a hoot to watch. It was The Wizard of Oz on acid, crack and LSD shot out of an atomic cannon on gossamer wings into a volcano of molten diamonds sprinkled with sugar. Samurai with a mini gun!!! Steampunk zombie nazis!!! Dragon/orcs/knights of the realm fight with a B25!!! Nuthouse becomes a whore house!!! And tossing so many iconic quest objects into a single adventure movie was jammin’ – a map to the hidden whatever or the buried treasure has been the focus of godonlyknows how many movies – how many stories are about seeking “the light”? Quest for Fire? – every King Arthut tale was about a knife – and seeking a key (real or symbolic) has been what countlesss works of art were about.

          Most of all I liked Sucker Punch because it was the sort of things I see in my dreams and nightmares but can barely remember when I wake up. Now I can see them on a movie screen or on a DVD (hope there’s a Director’s cut) as often as I want to while I’m wide awake.

          Zack Snyder is to movies what Picasso and Salvadore Dali are to painting. It’s a right brain or left brain thing if someone likes it or not. Too bad the “experts” watched the movie with such poor eyesight. But I’ll bet more people will eventually see Sucker Punch than will ever attend a Picasso exhibit.

          • Allen,

            Very well written comment and I agree with you on some points when it comes to critics in general. I think it depends upon WHO the “hero” is in a story when it comes to the consensus critical opinion. As far as the gun argument, well, with Liberal Hollywood and media, yeah, I’m with you. However I’ve reviewed tons of movies here and I can tell you there have been many occasions where I’ve thought “wow, if someone was carrying a gun [insert random horrifying event] never would have happened.”

            I appreciated the visuals and the soundtrack of the film – I actually sat there thinking how sad it was that such a visually well-designed and interesting film could leave me so incredibly indifferent and bored. If they’d taken the VFX scenes and released them as a series of short films online the might have been better served – instead of being part of a narrative that was so convoluted and disconnected (times 2) from reality.


            • The whole gun thing drives me nuts. But a liberal is just a conservative who hasn’t been mugged yet. Amazing how ultraliberal Presidents are ringed by heavily armed men. Can you say paradox? But there are pockets of the world where the wimps haven’t taken control. Kennesaw Georgia has a law that mandates a firearm be in every home – and it has one of the lowest crime rates in the country. The law abiding citizens have guns so the criminals go places where signs on the doors say No Guns Allowed. It’s like nobody learned anything from Luby’s.

              Back to the movie. I don’t understand how if you think the parts of the movie were greater than the sum, why you weren’t entertained during the parts. I llke walking through a gallery and focusing on the things I see and like while realizing the things on the walls I don’t like are there because nothing satisfies everybody completely. If I had to watch 10 minutes of drivel to see 5 minutes of some hot girls in a B25 attack orcs and dragons, I’m all in. And after 300’s splatterfest I thought the near-absence of blooc and this movie’s PG13 rating was an excellent move so hordes of teen boys can go see it. I especially appreciated the correctness of the girls strike team tactics. Sure there was a lot of poetic license taken, but the basics were spot on. And a jet-suspended railway – cool! Steampunk zombie nazis getting slaughtered – way cool! Fokkers and zepplins and blimps – on my!

              Basically my point is this – I’ve been entertained by lots of things, almost all of which had parts I was not entertained by. But if I find anything at all worthwhile in something someone else has created, that’s enough. I appreciate that they tried to share something of themselves to entertain others. And I certainly couldn’t provude the movies Mr. Snyder has. I wonder if the fruits of your labors, whatever they are, completely satisfy their intended targets always and completely.

              To your point of releasing the separate parts on the internet as short films – where’s the money in that?

              • Believe me, I’ve cut some movies a LOT of slack due to them having bits and pieces that I thought made the whole easier to swallow – but I don’t think that about this film.

                As to “where’s the money in that” – I’ll say “where’s the money in THIS.” It had a weak opening and it’s not going to go up from there… although we’ll see if international audiences like it better. I’ve seen it happen more than once where a film does far better box office overseas than it does in the U.S.


                • You took my “where’s the money in that” question wrong. I meant it literally. With a boxoffice movie there is a bsiness model that inclues the opportunity to make money. Like all businesses, some succeed and some fail, some movies make money and some don’t. I really was asking where the income model is if someone puts something on the internet.

                  • Allen,

                    Ah… well… advertising. Ads on the page on which the video appears, a brief video ad before it begins, along those lines. But things like that are also done for purely promotional purposes.


              • Initially I felt that the movie was too radical in alternating between intense action and boring dialogue. I’m not against dialogue. I just thought that there were parts of the movie where the dialogue was bland and didn’t really serve the storytelling or at least was not artfully presented. Then after reading your post I realized something. The dichotomy between the action and the boring parts serves to highlight the contrast between the solitude of incarceration and the intensity of Baby Doll’s fantasies. Its like we are supposed to be bored because we are in an asylum against our will. We want to hurry up and get to the next interesting part just like Baby Doll does. Hence the whole reason why she escapes reality in the first place. Also, since we go from action to boredom we are left wanting more action. For a movie with so much intense action, I’m actually amazed that I was not burned out but instead wanted even more action. That’s the first rule of showbusiness… always leave them wanting more.

              • “a liberal is just a conservative who hasn’t been mugged yet”

                I have been mugged and I have fantasized about having a gun and blowing the bastards away but if guns were so easy to obtain where I was then wouldn’t the muggers have had guns? Then I’d already be dead.

                The truth is that a conservative is a liberal who hasn’t ever thought things through yet and is just trying to live out the fantasy of blowing someone away.

                • Martin,

                  You’ve got it backwards, bud. 8)


                  • Truth is in most parts of the world I am considered very right wing. It’s scary how so many Americans think it would be a good idea if everybody had guns. Why? So everybody has an equal chance of killing everybody else and the last man standing wins? Police are trained to use guns but most would hope to never have to fire them. There’s a reason why they are referred to as “deadly weapons”.

                    • Martin,

                      FACT: Anywhere in the US where gun laws are more restrictive and law abiding citizens are not able to access them have far higher murder, assault and burglary rates than places where laws are less restrictive.

                      WHY? Two reasons:

                      1. Criminals IGNORE gun laws – they’ll get them regardless.

                      2. If a criminal thinks there’s a good possibility that the person he’s going to mug or the owner of the house he’s going to break into has the ability to defend himself with deadly force he’s going to think twice about doing it.

                      Best regards,


                    • “Anywhere in the US…”

                      Yes, anywhere is the U.S. Which is why a lot of foreigners are afraid to even visit the U.S., let alone live there. Oh I’m not talking about Mexicans coming to the U.S. looking for a job. I’m talking about wealthy tourists or immigrants who wouldn’t want them or their kids to be in the U.S. because they are scared that all Americans are carrying guns. It’s what they see on TV after all. And the scary thing is that a lot of Americans DO think it is their God given right to carry guns. And, yes, I do realize that it is all too easy to carry guns from city to city and that local gun laws are therefore a joke. That’s why the U.S. needs tougher NATIONAL gun laws. It’s about saving people’s lives and not just from criminals but from accidental shootings committed by “law abiding citizens”. But I guess that’s not something you particularly care about, based on your reply below.

                    • Martin,

                      I’m not going to argue with you any more on this. We don’t need “tougher national gun laws.” Gun crimes are NOT, I repeat NOT committed by law abiding citizens who FOLLOW the law, but by those who do NOT and would not even if there were more laws.

                      And we do not have a God given right to guns – but we do have a right to self-defense and to protect ourselves and our families.

                      If there is a fear of coming here because “everyone has a gun” then it’s irrational.

                      Oh, and thanks for ignoring what I said about where crime rates are highest and where they’re lowest. Typical non-response.

                      Best regards,


                    • “I’m not going to argue with you any more on this.”

                      You never really were arguing with me though, were you? You were just offering up your canned responses and ignoring what I had to say. Typical non response. You should have felt honored that I would take the time to talk to you about this. I guess I thought I was dealing with an intelligent person who wanted to actually discuss this issue. Clearly I was wrong.

                    • Martin,

                      Now you’re being an ass and are close to being banned. Up to you.


            • Hey Vic,

              One thing that kept leaping into my head was why didn’t Zak just go with a Human Trafficking angle?
              I felt juked when the story changed direction on me, but I really didn’t mind. So many of us on the board during the build up JUST KNEW how this was going to turn out. Some even thought it would lack substance.
              I’ll go on record as saying “I didn’t care”

              I was hoping to see a movie where I could hit the “off switch” in my head for an hour or so. Nope! Zak’s midfield juke left me sprawled on the tarmac thinking “WTH just happened?” all the while giving him props for a pretty good move.

              The dragon sequence was my least favorite but it was still pretty damn cool.

      • BRAVO!! WELL SAID!

      • Allen

        I knew that the cinematography was spectacular. I thought the story, and the telling of the story was brilliant. I just didn’t realise how brilliant until I read some of your posts. I am currently printing them so that I can read them more carefully and then attempt to explain the movie to my teenage son who loved the film and is more confused than me!

        Your discussions with George were particularly entertaining and my son will be reading those too. I hope you have more impact than I do when I ask him not to use “txting” language when writing – I doubt it though.

        I laughed when you mentioned Pig Latin in one of your posts because that’s exactly what I compare this lazy writing to. As a kid I communicated like that with my friends to confuse the adults and others, and it was fun. The difference is that Pig Latin did not become an acceptable way of communicating. We left high school and forgot all about it. We didn’t use it in Essay’s we wrote in college.

        I’m 38 years old so I am caught between two worlds. One where I abbreviate my words when sending text messages and also on sites like these. After reading your comments I will definitely stop that as I can’t complain about not being able to understand what kids these days are writing and then commit the same sin.

        In all honesty though I will probably continue to abbreviate my text messages and my excuse is that it’s cheaper. This of course is ridiculous as a quick look at my last telephone bill shows that I spent more on text messages than I did on actual telephone calls. What I really need to do is actually use my phone to talk to people. Thank you for reminding me of that!

        I have just found this site and look forward to reading your comments on other films that have confused me – and there are many!. My husband used to explain these films to me and tell me which films the current ones are based on. Now I will rely on your brilliant brain instead!

        I do what I can with my High School education and try to improve my grammar by reading. My obsession with reading is the only reason I know how to spell!

        If you happen to read this post I would be interested to know your opinion on “emoticons” which I am also guilty of using. I just can’t seem to write an email or text without including 5 smiley faces :)

        As you might have noticed, I also have a terrible habit of using exclamation marks! :(

        Anyway thanks for listening


  22. To be honest, unlike the friend that I went with, I wasn’t expecting much of a plot, or much of a movie. Going into the theater, I was expecting shoot’ em’ up, nonstop action, and that’s what I got. Sure, I wish that there was some better plot development, and during some of the movie I had no idea what was going on. But who cares when you go to watch half-naked burlesque dancers kick some ass? The special effects were amazing, and the music (Bjork wins) backed it up. I don’t think I’d watch it again, and I’m definitely upset about having to spend $9.50 on seeing it, but it was an experience. A good one? I’m not sure yet.

    • EM,

      I felt the same way when I left the theatre.. sort of What the hell just happened? and you don’t know how to feel about it. it’s like seeing a slight of hand trick, but at your expense. you give them props for a masterful trick and all the skills, but really haven’t figured out if it was worth it or not.

  23. By the way, in interview after afterview Ms. Browning has said all of the fantasies were in Babydoll’s mind. Why so many people who haven’t bothered to find out the facts keep insisting this is Sweetpea’s fantasy is beyond me. Although it’s par for the course when anything gets discussed on the internet. Everybody thinks they know what they’re talking about without basing their ideas on any easily available facts from the absolute best authority. Ms. Browning WAS Babydoll. If she says the fantasies were Babydoll’s, then that settles it. Anyone arguing with the position taken by the woman who played the part isn’t ignorant, they’re stupid.

  24. I heard that when Baby doll was dancing in her fantasy world she was actually getting raped by the people she was dancing for and that is how she obtained the items. does anyone know if this is true? Its really confusing me haha.

    • While it’s not directly spelled out, it’s implied that she was being raped in the actual asylum reality, which she perceived as dancing in the burlesque illusion – as a means of coping.

    • Strong possibility, and highly likely, but no way to be sure. Rape would be the ultimate horror that would make a 20 year old girl need to escape into fantasy. And Blue raping Babydoll would have been a perfect time for another girl to acquire quest object.

      It was common for the female inmates of asylums and prisons to not clean themselves after performing certain bodily functions so their naughty parts would be soiled and they would not be raped. Since this movie is set in the 1950’s, that was a time when penal or mental institutions were hellholes. The movie The Snake Pit went a long way to exposing them, but the sensibilities of the time could not have allowed showing any of the sexually based horrors like rape.

      I believe the Babydoll rape scenario is a strong possibility because it would go a long way toward explaining Blue’s actions after she was lobotomized. Of course, only Mr. Snyder knows for sure.

      • Many people seem to think that Babydoll was raped in the asylum by Blue.
        And I can see why people would think that. It fits in the whole “coping with the horrors” idea. But the fact is, it is clearly established in the whorehouse endscene that she was never raped by Blue.
        After stabbing him in the left shoulder, she says “you will never have me…. EVER!”.

        I see a lot of theories here about what happens in the asylum in real life, but I hardly ever see people commenting that really imagine what the real life equivalants of the imaginitive worlds are.
        Clearly, not all the girls have been raped by Blue (Only the lobotomized ones) but all the girls know about the raping.
        Horrofied by the idea of getting sexualy abused after being lobotomized Babydoll comes up with a plan to prevent Blue from raping her.
        The plan was never about escaping herself!
        If Babydoll would have escaped, she would still have to cope with accidently killing her little sister. She wants to forget.

        Her plan was never to escape, only to stop Blue from raping the girls and to forget what she did. And she has succeeded. This was a happy end and it’s perfect for this movie that it visually appealed to the numbified moviegoing masses, but it requires intelligence to be able to appreciate it. Or to even understand what is going on!

      • Chris – as I mentioned above, it’s possible that she was being raped in the asylum reality and perceived it as dancing in the burlesque illusion world.

        She was dancing in the burlesque illusion (as you mention she was still clothed) – however, the burlesque world isn’t “reality” – in reality, the actual asylum, we never see what’s happening to Babydoll when she’s “dancing.”

          • And you have to remember that all of the fantasies happen in the last moment before she’s lobotomized. The fantasies don’t happen while real world events are happening. The fantasies are how her mind remembers those events, like your life flashing before your eyes, in the final moment when she’s still has a concious mind. The previous horrible events and the imminent doom she knows is about to happen is why her mind creates the fantasies. It’s like your brain not allowing you to feel or remember the pain or horrible physical injuries. Read my earlier comments about how this is a remake of a French film broadcast as a Twilight Zone episode in 1964. The movie won a Cannes film festival award and an Oscar.

        • Yes, thank you, Ben because that explains why Zach told the story the way he did to keep the PG-13 rating. I still think having three levels of reality was cheap story telling.

    • Hearing you and your Mom enjoyed the movie has renewed my faith in humanity. I keep saying this movie was best for right-side-brain folks. The more creative someone is, the more they appreciate others creativity in any form.

      This movie pushes the bounds so far out there, and it hits you with so much, it’s hard to keep up with. The second time I saw it I picked out a lot of the details Mr. Snyder put in to help the viewer, but on an IMAX screen it’s hard to see them all. For instnace, Blue has a moustache in all of the fantasies. That single element differentiates reality from fantasy as well as the black-and-white to color transition in The Wizard of Oz did.

      Fortunately, audiences are rating this movie three times higher than critics. To me, Sucker Punch was like riding a roller coaster. There’s no reason to ride the silly looking thing, you don’t get anything out of it, but it sure is fun when you’re screaming down the hills and around the corners upside-down.

      • I wish Gene Siskel were still alive. One time Siskel and Ebert were reviewing a movie called Stripper and Ebert gave it thumbs down but Siskel gave it thumbs up. Ebert asked why and Siskel said “I liked it” and Ebert said “Really?” and Siskel said “There were parts I liked” and Ebert said “Okay. We’ll move on then.” :)

        I think critics will look at a movie like Sucker Punch and say “It’s a bad movie” when what they really should be doing is asking themselves if it was worth seeing or not. Of course, by this standard most pornos would get five star ratings because there are bound to be parts you like. That’s the problem with judging a movie based solely on whether or not you liked it. But at least it’s being honest.

        • Martin,

          When Siskel was still around I generally agreed with him, not Ebert.


    • Life sucks and planet Earth is constantly trying to kill every living thing on it. Movies are the greatest tool the modern world offers to escape life for a couple of hours at a time. Drugs and alcohol have too dire consequences for me, movies don’t. Fell in love with movies at 8 years old and have seen and studied thousands in the half century since then while staying sober. I can’t tell you what goes in a Margarita, but I can tell you Pia Zadora’s first part was as the young girl in Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. If you know enough obscure facts about obscure people in movies, it’s easy to connect the well known stuff.

      Stephen Spielberg of our day is as influential as Shakespeare was in his day. And the more movies you study, the more you understand how new movies relate to old movies. It’s just like with any new invention. You really can’t invent anything new, just different ways of doing the same thing using the simple elements discovered long ago. Some are better, some are worse, just like with movies. Every love story is still just a love story. Every who-done-it is still just a who-done-it.

      I can’t do what these great movie makers do. But I love what their movies do for me (help me escape from time to time) so I study them so I can understand them better. Edison said he failed his way to success, that he did not discover how to make a light bulb, but he learned a thousand ways how not to makea light bult. Same thing with movies. If you watch a lot of bad movies (which of course nobody ever intended to be bad) you connect the dots that eventually allow great movies to be made. And sometimes an early effort isn’t recognized or understand for what it will lead to. A man making weather observations one morning and noticing a phenomenon he did not understand led eventually to the invention of nuclear weapons. Read the book Connections for more. When sound was first added to movies, there were many critics who said it was just a passing fad because silent movies were an art form that would endure.

      Of course, there are times when movies have too much dialogue. Sucker Punch is a remake of the short film, An Occurrnce at Owl Creek Bridge, which won an Oscar and it only had 10 spoken words.

      So the bad movies create the good movies. I appreciate the people who did the failing work so others could succeed. And while some people may belittle Sucker Punch, it tooks us to more places doing more things among more peculiar peole, places and things that movies usually do. This is one of those first-of-its-kind movies that won’t really be appreciated until we see what sorts of coming attractions it will influence. Some 15 year old kid who sees Sucker Punch today and thirty of forty years from now recognizes some part of it in a new movie of that day will simply be doing what I do.

  25. was really disappointed with this movie. it was like watching inception meets charlie’s angels

    • I liked Charlie’s Angels (the TV series). Found it to be a great bit of escapist fare and really appreciated something that allowed women to play lead parts. Turned out to be groundbraking in that regard and led to lots of other great entertainment. Sure it was silly sometimes, but everyday life is serious enough. I like being entertained with silly. Bugs Bunny is one of my greatest heroes. It’s a shame today’s children don’t have more silly stuff to laugh at.

  26. Just saw a preview in NZ (opens here on April 7), and totally agree with what Allen has said so far. I SO wanted to LOVE this film – turned out it was much different to what I anticipated, with a few holes – but I’ve not been able to stop thinking about it all day. My thoughts on the Wise Man character? He symbolises survivialist gut instinct. He was with BabyDoll the whole time, but through Baby Doll’s example and sacrifice, Sweet Pea finally found her own Wise Man which enabled her to get on the bus and avoid the police at the end. The sky was not a ‘normal’ sky in that scene, so to me suggested something an ‘other worldly’ interpretation to get that message across (to me at least). Perhaps that’s obvious to everyone, but this definitely seems to be a film that’s open to a whole lot of interpretation! I think I love it a little, just for that, and I think I’ll see it again. Definitely hoping for a Directors Cut DVD if there ever is one…

    • The first time I saw Sucker Punch I was so surprised and so blown away just looking all over the screen at all of the neat images I didn’t catch a lot of the story points. Three days later, the second time I saw it I enjoyed it more because I knew what to watch for so I could really understand the story and plot. Something about this movie’s style reminded me of Strets of Fire with its fantasy aspect. Understood it (and most movies) better with each subsequent viewing.

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