First, SP isn't original. It's an archetype revenge fantasy we've seen or read 1000 times before, albeit in a lush and beautiful package. It will be criticized as fetishistic fanboy imagery used to sell phony female empowerment when all it is really doing is pumping up the comic book/video game generation with all the catches and hooks that make that generation cream its jeans. That's because that is true. That's what this is. And that isn't a bad thing.
What is a bad thing is this lackluster script that lacks any fleshed out, fully realized, three dimensional characters at all. It's chock full of bad guys. I don't hate any of them. I'm totally ambivalent. Of the six primary female leads (5 patients and the doctor), only two come close to being actual characters, and Babydoll ain't one of them. She's just Brittany Spears minus personality and plus Thorazine. It's Sweat Pea and Rocket, and as much as I wanted to care... I just didn't care at all when Rocket dies, or when then absolutely character-free Blondie or Amber dies.
The High Roller shows up and turns out to be a compassionate doctor, but why... because we only get to learn that he's a stand-up professional after he performs the lobotomy. And why do we care about Gorski? Her compassion as a doctor is matched only by her incompetence as an administrator. Plus, we've prior to this never actually met any of these characters outside of the fantasy realm of the Brothel... where people are decidedly not who them seem to be.
The orderlies serving Oscar Isaac's Blue Jones suddenly and mysteriously "don't want to mistreat these girls anymore" in what can only be described as a lazy screenwriter trying to get out of a movie before he hits the two hour mark because this ain't Watchmen and he knows it.
Changing gears... my second major criticism is that the dream sequences were ultimately irrelevant. They were all cool. Everything in this movie was cool. But none of it mattered. We watch a scene where a bomb blows up a city. No one cares because we never really know anything about what that city might be, what it might represent to the girls, or anything. And they just killed robots as they failed to defuse the bomb that destroys the city.
Earlier the Nazis are steampunk zombies... so, killing them has no real impact beyond cool fighting scenes. They also take on some of Peter Jackson's surplus orcs and a dragon, bringing the sum total of killed characters that we gave enough of a damn about to want to see killed to zero.
And its a shame...
Because I really liked this movie. I was excited to see it. I like Snyder's other films and I love Watchmen almost religiously. The cinematography is amazing. The FX are dazzling. The original soundtrack and songs recorded for this film are outstanding. In fact, I love this movie's soundtrack more than any other film soundtrack in years... even more so than Reznor's Social Network or Daft Punk's Tron. Costuming, set design, acting, go up and down the list and you gotta give an A to everything... until you get to the absolutely unengaged, uninspired script which delivers nothing to care about except a moral barely deeper than that of a fortune cookie.
It is respectable eye candy. Beyond that, it is squandered talent.