By: Daniel Chadwick-Shubat
After seeing Suicide Squad I had mixed emotions. The critics were without a doubt wrong in my mind. Suicide Squad was much better made and more enjoyable than Batman vs Superman. DC took note from Marvel and added a bit more comedy, whilst keeping the signature dark vibe intact. Obviously, it had its problems too, but those were easily ignored compared to the instantly forgettable Batman v Superman.
Suicide Squad focuses on the worst of the worst. Scum of the Earth criminals who are psychopath’s, murderers, pyromaniacs and even cannibals. When an object “not from this Earth” starts terrorizing Midway City (AKA Toronto) the US government authorizes Operation X, an operation that puts these bad guys out in the field to complete “impossible” missions in exchange for time off their lengthy prison sentences. Our “anti-heroes” are as follows; Deadshot (Will Smith), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney), El Diablo (Jay Hernandez), Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje), Katana (Karen Fukuhara) and Slipknot (Adam Beach).
The first thing about this movie that stands out is it’s killer cast. It is without a doubt the best part of the movie. The banter and chemistry between Robbie and Smith is fantastic (they did the great movie Focus together as well). Jai Courtney is in his prime as Captain Boomerang, creating a lot of laughs with his Aussie accent. Killer Croc is a surprising comic relief with all of his lines being met with laughter in the theater. The Joker (Jared Leto) doesn’t get as much screen time as you would like but he makes the most of his time, creating a unique character that differs from Heath Ledger’s interpretation (still not beating it) and sets him up as a potential menace to superheroes in the DC cinematic universe. The only person that wasn’t really right for their role was Cara Delevigne and let’s face it she’s still learning the trade. Also, she’s a witch for most of the time, so not much acting required really.
Then we get to the story and writing, where most of my knocks against the movie are. The flashbacks at the start of the movie are at times very distracting and take away from the movie experience. The writing is also jumpy at times, especially in the first act where the audience are introduced to all the characters. This could be mostly be blamed on the fact that director David Ayer had a measly six weeks to write the script (according to reports). While you won’t get any spoilers here, the movie does suffer from Hollywood ending syndrome and it’ll probably leave a lot of pessimistic and cynical people screaming into their pillows.
But a lot of people (especially critics) miss the point of these types of movies. Suicide Squad was made for the fans. I’ve read quite a lot of the comics and that helped enhance the movie going experience. That’s a positive and a negative thing in my perspective. The movie is still perfectly enjoyable without having any background knowledge of the comics, as it has lots of redeeming qualities. It has a big heart and is one of the most diversified casts I’ve seen in a long time. It created an ensemble that blends perfectly together, most likely due to the amount of physical pain they had to go through together. In a way, this movie is a testament to David Ayer, who gets fantastic performances out of all his actors, even if his ways are unorthodox. If only we had known that the way to coax a good performance out of Jai Courtney was to get him to take shrooms we could have saved ourselves years of pain.
Suicide Squad has its fair share of problems. The editing is abysmal at times, and the script doesn’t quite flow in the first act, creating distractions that could’ve been easily avoided. But when you compare it to the last entry in the DCCU (DC Cinematic Universe) it’s a huge step forward. It has established new characters that are likely to be fan favourites for years to come, created a well-balanced cast that all seem eager to do a sequel and most importantly, has brought fun back to DC. Suicide Squad might not be everyone’s cup of tea but I guarantee that everyone will find something they like because people they’re bad guys and who doesn’t like a good ol’ fashioned villain.
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