There's plenty of physical action here from Jason Momoa and young costar Isabela Merced, but their thinly-developed characters and an even slighter plot line undermine this film's reach.
The concept of exploring the complicated American landscape of national politics, global pharmaceutical companies, and overpriced health care in Sweet Girl had a lot of potential. But the unraveling mystery is much more focused on the chase and violent fight scenes, which get replayed in a twist at the end, rather than the ideas. This means the resolution of the conspiracy that motivated the main characters' revenge journey comes as a let-down.
In its place, the father-daughter relationship between Momoa and Merced offers some sweet and truthful moments of love, loyalty, and responsibility. A powerful scene shows Momoa flailing down hospital corridors looking for a private place to unleash howling sobs after his wife dies.
It would've been great to know more about their characters and their backstory than just the pivotal moment that launched them into this scenario. They live in a run-down Pittsburgh apartment, subsist on junk food, and spend most of their free time at a boxing club. It's a compelling backdrop, but what else could we know about them? Who else do they have in their lives? What were their dreams and plans before Amanda died?
Fleshing out these key characters would've made both them and their journey more interesting and plausible.
Read the full review at Common Sense Media.