Currently in cinemas is Sin City: A Dame To Kill For, the hotly-anticipated sequel to 2005's Sin City. This seems like a good time to go back to assess the original film.
Sin City is, on the very basic level, a comic book adaptation. Frank Miller wrote the Sin City graphic novels between 1991 and 2000 but- having had a negative experience of working in Hollywood (with his screenplays for RoboCop 2 and RoboCop 3 being drastically altered)- Miller was not keen to release the film rights for any of his other comic books, for fear of the same thing happening again.
Director Robert Rodriguez (El Mariachi, From Dusk Til Dawn, The Faculty) was a huge fan of the comic-book series and wanted to make a film version of them- but wanted it to be a 'translation, not an adaptation', sticking very closely to the source material. Choosing a 3-page short story entitled 'The Customer Is Always Right' from the 1994 collection The Babe Wore Red And Other Stories, Rodriguez got actors Marley Shelton (The Customer) and Josh Hartnett (The Salesman) to perform against a green-screen then added the background scenery in digitally. Once filming was completed, Rodriguez flew Miller into Austin to see the finished result. Very happy with the end result, Miller agreed for several of his Sin City yarns to be adapted for the film. This 'proof of concept' footage acts as the opening scene of the film.
|Josh Hartnett and Marley Shelton in 'The Customer Is Always Right'|
|Nick Stahl as The Yellow Bastard|
|Mickey Rourke as Marv|
Sin City is hailed by some as a modern classic and its place in the evolution of film-making is undeniable. It's gritty, gory, stylish, visceral and one hell of a ride. But does A Dame To Kill For live up to it? We'll be sharing our thoughts on the film in an upcoming programme.