Director: David Ayer
Starring: Will Smith, Margot Robbie, Viola Davis, Jared Leto, Jai Courtney, Jay Hernandez, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Cara Delevingne, Joel Kinnaman, Karen Fukuhara.
This review is spoiler free, revealing no more than is seen in the trailers.
A secret government agency recruits a group of imprisoned supervillains to execute dangerous black ops missions in exchange for clemency, which inevitably leads to chaos. (Source: IMDb)
We’re in that unfortunate predicament once again with the latest film in the DCEU, in that just like Batman vs Superman earlier this year, Suicide Squad has opened to less than favourable reviews. Going in with a very open mind, here’s what I thought…
So let’s kick this off by saying this film is nowhere near as bad as people will have you believe. It’s flawed, sure, but I genuinely really, really enjoyed this film.
Refreshingly, the colour palette is much brighter than that seen in BvS, and it’s a very welcome change. It suits this universe, and paints an interesting concept that the heroes are dark and troubled, yet the “villains” are colourful and interesting. This doesn’t quite right all of the wrongs of the DCEU so far, but it’s something which I hope continues in the next slate of films.
Ayer’s direction is dynamic and interesting, it’s actually beautiful to look at in places with some really iconic imagery. It’s maybe one of the most “comic book-y” looking films since Raimi’s Spider-Man movies. I loved the use of text and colour, particularly in the opening scenes.
With so many characters there will inevitably be those that stand out and those that fade into the background, and the standouts for me were Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, Will Smith’s Deadshot, and surprisingly, Jai Courtney’s Captain Boomerang. I had high hopes for this incarnation of the beloved Harley Quinn, and happy to report Margot Robbie does not disappoint. She totally steals the show, and if anything I’d have liked more of her. The relationship between Harley and The Joker was done great justice, and I can’t wait to see this play out more as the DCEU films progress. I had concerns about Will Smith being in this movie. As such a big household name I worried it ran the risk of being his vehicle when really it’s an ensemble piece. He was great though, and despite the fact his character was given the most emotional grounding, it didn’t detract from the overall storyline. Finally being allowed to act in his native accent, Aussie Jai Courtney is great as Captain Boomerang. He has the best lines, along with Harley, and I really enjoyed his performance.
Karen Fukuhara has much less to do as Katana, but she looks totally badass and has some great action moments. I liked that everyone had their moment, but I think they made the right decision focusing on some characters more than others, as I never got the sense of too many big personalities jostling for screen time.
Jared Leto’s much talked about Joker is fine. I can’t say much more than that because we really don’t see much of him, but he’s undeniably creepy, and very much makes the character his own. He’s no Heath Ledger though, but who is?!
I really only had one problem with this film, and that was the villain. Bless Cara Delevingne for trying, but I really didn’t rate her performance.
The plot pretty much revolves around the aforementioned Delevingne’s Enchantress, and with a weak villain, we have a weak plot. After our whistle stop tour through the rogues gallery, we have the villain set up, and then the entire film feels like a closing act! The motives of Enchantress are not well explained, and whilst there’s fun to be had along the way, the plot never feels fully fleshed out.
I saw this movie and you should too. I hope it doesn’t become the norm to describe a DCEU film as “flawed but I enjoyed it anyway”, but that’s what I’ve come up with once again! The characters are engaging, it looks great, and is undoubtedly entertaining. It’s just about enough to save the plot, and I was enjoying myself so much I was easily able to overlook this. I’m hopeful for the rest of DC’s movies and Suicide Squad shows they can get so much right. Definitely worth a watch!
Agree with everything I’ve said, or am I a totally misguided idiot who has got it all wrong? Let me know in the comments below!