“Suicide Squad” Movie Review

After the lukewarm reception of Batman v Superman, can Suicide Squad signal a change in pace for the DC Extended Universe? Let’s find out. This super villain blockbuster movie was released on August 5th, 2016, breaking records with an opening of $280 million in box office receipts. A few months after the events of Dawn of Justice, the government has grown weary of how the “next Superman” might not share the same beliefs of peace and grace. So Amanda Waller decides to assemble a team of super villains who she believes can do some good. So after Task Force X- or the Suicide Squad -is assembled, they get sent to do the government’s dirty work in exchange for shortened prison sentences. If they fail, they will get thrown under the bus using plausible deniability. Gotta be honest, I had a lot of fun with this movie. Why a bunch of critics and fans decide to hate it, I don’t know. Right off the bat, the team is really cool. With villains including Harley Quinn, Killer Croc, and Deadshot, most members had a chance to prove their own worth. Margot Robbie owns it as Harley Quinn in every aspect. She’s funny, sexy, really tough, just plain nuts. No disrespect to Arleen Sorkin’s voice performance in the Animated Series, but this is the only Harley Quinn that I want to know about. Another great performance comes from Will Smith as Floyd Lawton/Deadshot. I always thought he was a great choice, being one of the most charismatic actors in the business. In the movie, he provided a lot of funny lines of dialogue and proved that even in his old age, the Fresh Prince can still kick ass. Even Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang was awesome. He may not have much of a character arc, but he was still really snarky and cynical. Now is as good a time as any to talk about Jared Leto’s version of the Joker. Alright, when his reveal photo was released last year, I took one and said “I don’t like how they’re doing him.” He looked nothing the Joker we are all accustomed to seeing. However, I saw where they were going with the character in the movie and liked it. He’s not the main villain the Suicide Squad, but more like a wild card. A catalyst for scenes revolving around Harley. So the bummer is he has about 30 minutes of screen-time. In fact, that’s my biggest complaint about the movie, is how not all of the characters got enough screen-time to fully flesh out. If you’re a fan of Killer Croc, you may be disappointed in that he doesn’t say a whole lot. However given the stupid nature of his backstory and Adewale Akkinouye-Agbaje’s pitch perfect portrayal, I won’t complain much. My favorite character in the movie hands down is El Diablo, played by Jay Hernandez. Given arguably the most satisfying character arc in the movie, he is, for all intents and purposes, the good guy in Task Force X. He really doesn’t want to fight in this war because of all the harm he’s capable of, but joins because he recognizes it as a good cause. Some of the CGI in the movie did look fake, especially in the latter half when they go head to head against the main villain, Enchantress. But most of it looked fine up to that point. And there’s something that bothered me with Enchantress/June Moone. Don’t get me wrong, she’s a cool character, but I just didn’t like the way Cara Delivigne portrayed her. If they had cast someone else to do the role, I don’t think it would have hurt the overall quality. It’s also worth noting that there a few pacing issues spread out here and there. In particular, during scenes when certain characters are thrown into flashback mode. But that’s a meager gripe, given the need to give characters some form of backstory or another. Yet even with those minor issues, Suicide Squad gave me exactly what I wanted. For a movie that features nearly 11 comic book characters whom audiences have no familiarity with, it does a pretty solid job at introducing them all. It gave great dialogue, fun humor, and an overall sense of heart. Oh yeah, and the soundtrack is awesome as well. That bar scene from the trailers was probably the best and most character-driven scene in the entire movie. Though this summer has been fairly disappointing, I can’t wait to see what’s in store for the DC Extended Universe. One last note: there is a mid-credits scene afterward that bears an important connection to the Justice League.

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