Hey there ladies and gents, time for another new review and today I’ll be talking about one of my most anticipated films of 2016 which I saw around an ago; Suicide Squad. Now for those not aware I’ve been hyped for this film since the first Comic-Con trailer, the choice of director, cast and overall marketing just made me believe that this was gonna be the DC film for me, and more so than Batman V Superman, this was the film that I had most hope for in terms of expanding the DC cinematic universe. Now unless you’ve been away from the internet then you must be aware of all the negative reviews this film has gained over the last few days, and even though I caught glimpses of it, I decided to steer clear of those reviews and see it for myself. So I watched the earliest screening in my cinema, now I’m here, and well, here’s the thing, Suicide Squad, it’s not bad, but was not the amazing film I wanted it to be.
The story can be described as the following:
“A secret government agency led by Amanda Waller recruits imprisoned supervillains to execute dangerous black ops missions and save the world from a powerful threat in exchange for clemency.“
This story had some interesting elements with the formation of the villain squad and some of their individual stories, but the plot felt a little muddled and could have been a lot simpler and more streamlined. The problems begin with the story as I felt like there was a few too many moving pieces, not that it was hard to follow, more so there were a few side/sub plots that could have been shortened or gotten rid of altogether. Also the flow of the story felt off with some pacing issues and oddly edited scenes. And the overall plot was fine, but it had several elements that I’d seen in other comic books films, but not in a good way, plus I was kind of hoping for a film that was on a smaller scale and while this story was smaller than the last two DC films, at the same time it felt like it was reaching further to a global scale and that was unnecessary.
Now let’s talk about the cast, they may be the best part about the whole film, though this ensemble cast are not properly balanced, and some get way more screen time and character development than others. Let’s start with the top-tier characters with Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg and Jared Leto as The Joker. Smith was on-point, he was funny, charismatic, mean and commanding, pretty much all the reasons you like the actor and I liked what he did as Deadshot, but I felt like his character got the most screen time and character development, and some of his scenes could have been cut to give more fleshing out time to other characters. Robbie was solid as Harley Quinn, there was that right balance of playfulness, craziness and sexiness, and while I wasn’t keen on some of the backstory, the overly sexual costume and personality traits, Harley was still a lot of fun. Davis was my favourite as Amanda Waller, she was a no-nonsense, ruthless and intimidating individual and Davis brought her A-game. And Kinnaman, while I didn’t care too much about his character, this was one of the better roles I’ve liked him in. Then there’s the slightly lower tier of the cast. Jai Courtney and Jay Hernandez brought some interesting flavour to the film as Boomerang and El Diablo, Courtney was fun, hilarious and crazy, while Hernandez brought a cool seriousness to his character and ended up being one of my favourite people. And Cara Delevingne as Enchantress, I kind of liked her but at the same time her performance and character fluctuated between me liking and disliking her. As for everyone else they either alright or just there, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc was alright but we barely got to know him and he didn’t say or do too much, and finally Karen Fukuhara as Katana severely underutilized and had some cool minor character detailed, but she was wasted and it pissed me off because it felt almost as bad as what X-Men: Apocalypse did with Jubilee.
When it comes to the presentation I wasn’t very impressed with this film. Visually the film had some decent moments with the action sequences, use of colour and CGI, but I wasn’t keen on how some of the scenes were framed, the action sequences were alright but lacked the right kind of choreography and cinematography to make them stand out, some of the lighting and editing was off and the CGI was iffy from time to time. Maybe I’m being a little harsh, but the visual material is one of the key elements I look forward to in any comic book adapted film and this film just didn’t have the wow factor. Also on the audio side of things the film score by Steven Price was a little bland and did nothing to amplify what was happening on-screen, plus there felt like there was an overabundance of music put in this film, and while I’m not against the use of popular music in films, at the same time it felt distracting and placed all over the film for the sake of it. Oh and finally, I dunno if it was just me but the sound effects really lacked impact especially when it came to the gunfire and characters getting smacked on the ground or into walls.
In the end Suicide Squad is not a terrible film, it’s certainly not Fan4stic or X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but I wanted to love this film so badly and it pains me that another one of these non-Batman films from DC has ended up not being a complete success considering the talent involved. I feel like this will be another polarizing film, but for the sake of your curiosity/sanity, give this film a watch and decide for yourselves.
So are you going to watch Suicide Squad and if you’ve seen it, pass on your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review, laters! 😀
August 12, 2016 at 6:14 am
Hey there! Hope all is well with you. When the DC lineup was announced Suicide Squad stood out as something that could be different and interesting. I also liked David Ayer’s End of Watch and Fury. I was curious to see what he could do with a comic book blockbuster. And the trailers and marketing campaign were promising. So when the early reviews came out, I didn’t read them but caught the headlines, I was disappointed. But like you, I figured I should watch it and decide for myself. By the way, I plan on watching all the films you’ve been reviewing lately and want to see it and form my own opinions first before reading other reviews. 🙂
You did a very fine job of breaking down what elements worked and what is lacking. I think the movie could have been more to my liking if the squad was given a different mission and a different villain. I hear the screenplay was written very quickly and it showed. The characters that stood out for me are Smith as Deadshot and Robbie as Quinn, probably because they got screen time and I liked the actors and humor. Overall, I agree about the wasted talent, there’s a better movie to made with the Squad. Still, I don’t think it’s terrible and isn’t that bad despite many flaws. Great post!
August 16, 2016 at 9:42 pm
Hi Eddie, nice to see your comment here. Just like you I was excited for Suicide Sqaud because of the talent involved and the good trailers, it is a shame that the film’s ended up this way. Again it’s not terrible, just not the epic film I’d hoped for. And I’m so glad you thought that the team should have been on a different mission with a different villain, this film could have been a lot less complex and less superhero-y and more action thriller-based with more realistic stakes.
When you eventually get around to my reviews I look forward to reading your comments if you decide to drop by again. 😛
August 18, 2016 at 1:48 am
I totally agree on the action thriller-based with more realistic stakes. I thought with this director, based on his previous stuff, Suicide Squad would go in that direction. Oh well. Haha, of course I’ll be dropping by. 🙂
Anna (Film Grimoire)
August 13, 2016 at 9:00 am
Nice one Curtis. I haven’t seen this yet, but I’m still really excited despite the horrendous criticism it’s been receiving!
August 16, 2016 at 9:35 pm
Thanks a lot Anna, I still reckon you should give it a chance yo. Hope you do a review as well. 🙂