Sin City: A Dame to Kill For is the sequel/prequel to 2005's Sin City, and like the first one, this film tells multiple stories all set in the titular city. These stories are Just Another Saturday Night, a short story following Marv (Mickey Rourke) recounting the events of the night after he wakes up on the highway surrounded by dead men, The Long Bad Night, where a young gambler named Johnny (Joseph Gordon-Levitt) arrives in Sin City and ends up getting on Senator Roarke's (Powers Boothe) badside, Nancy's Last Dance, a story focused on stripper Nancy Callahan and the aftermath of what happened to her in the first film, and finally A Dame to Kill For, the main story, where Dwight McCarthy (Josh Brolin) gets entangled with the wrong people when Ava (Eva Green) returns to Sin City.
The film follows the same style as the original. It's very different from other films, and it's very faithful to the graphic novel it's adapting. Just like the first film, it actually felt like I was watching a graphic novel come to life on the screen. However, it's not in the film's style people will find problem, it's in its substance. The first one was visually stunning, yes, but it's three main stories were all very compelling, intriguing, and at the very least, enjoyable. The same cannot be said for this one.
All this film is is a watered down version of the first one. More focused in mimicking its predecessor to achieve its own success rather than being focused on telling good stories. All the storylines in this film are generic revenge/personal vendetta storylines, and it got very repetitive after awhile. Basically, it was like watching three episodes of a TV show beat you over the head with the same message, and I didn't find that even remotely enjoyable.
Out of all the stories, I'd have to say I found Joseph Gordon-Levitt's story, The Long Bad Night (Part I), the most entertaining, mainly because of Gordon-Levitt's charisma on-screen. However, it came back for a Part II, and then became another generic "I'll get my revenge on you" story. My least favorite would have to be Nancy's Last Dance, probably because of its placement in the film. It's the last story of the film, and it's another revenge story (surprise, surprise), and the person Nancy Callahan was exact her revenge on was the same person Johnny was exacting his revenge on in the previous story, so yes... I was bored out of my mind and the story wasn't even interesting. A lot of people found A Dame to Kill For boring, but I disagree. I found it to be pretty okay, mostly because of Eva Green's performance.
Yes, Joseph Gordon-Levitt's and Eva Green's performance brought at least some joy to this film. They were great. I would've comment on Mickey Rourke as Marv, because I actually did like Rourke returning, but I didn't like the way they handled Marv. He just pops up here and there at random times during different stories, usually just to beat someone up (another example of the stories getting repetitive), so Marv wasn't really a big positive for the film. Josh Brolin replaces Clive Owen as Dwight McCarthy, but he's kind of eh. He broods. That's basically it. Jessica Alba tries (she really does) to be the brooding badass, but she doesn't quite pull it off. Which is a shame, she's the only female protagonist in this one, and I really wanted to like her here.
Sin City: A Dame to Kill For isn't a very great (final) outing for Sin City. It's repetitive a lot, it's not that entertaining, intriguing or compelling, it's characters are pretty flat, and the acting isn't all that good. When put beside its predecessor, it comes off as very unnecessary.