Suicide Squad is the third film in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) and follows a group of super villains hired by Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) to combat the next Superman-level threat.
There are only two good aspects about this movie, and that’s Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn and Will Smith as Deadshot. Robbie perfectly portrays Harley as most fans know her from Batman: The Animated Series and the Arkham video games. She is playful, crazy, and sadistic, as Harley should be. Smith is a great fit for the asshole hitman they wrote Deadshot as. Both Robbie and Smith bring charisma to their respective roles, and nobody could have done better than either of them.
If you’re gonna use bad guys to fight the next Superman should they be evil, you need to at least use villains with super powers. The entire concept of the Suicide Squad is preposterous; Waller wants to defeat the next Superman with this so-called team of metahumans. And yet, only three of them have superpowers while one of them goes rogue and the other two hardly do a damn thing until the climax, those being El Diablo and Killer Croc. A being like Superman is not going to be stopped by a gun, a baseball bat, a boomerang, fire, or brute strength. Nobody anywhere would think using the Suicide Squad to kill the next Superman would be a good idea. But hey, Warner Bros and DC needed a good reason to get Harley Quinn in a movie for the first time.
The soundtrack is all over the place. I get where the editors were trying to go when we are introduced to Deadshot, Harley Quinn, and Amanda Waller. The songs played when they first appear fit the characters. However, the rest of the soundtrack is just a mishmash of random songs put together because a certain superhero movie had a lot of good tunes and it became a huge hit. If you’re gonna put a bunch of popular songs in your movie, they should all have a common sound that connects them all. Songs like “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Fortunate Son,” “Heathens,” and “Sucker for Pain” have nothing in common, so it makes the soundtrack feel like the creative team simply went with what people like to listen to without sticking to the overall theme of the movie.
The problem with introducing all these characters in one movie is that the first 20 minutes is a marathon of exposition and little character development. The most time in the opening is dedicated to setting up Deadshot and Harley while Captain Boomerang, El Diablo, Killer Croc, and Rick Flag are only given a minute or two of introduction. We have complete flashbacks for Deadshot and Harley, setting them up as the only characters the audience can care about. Even Rick Flag, who plays a bigger role than the other members of the team, doesn’t get that much setup or development. All we are told is that he’s a colonel and he and June Moone/Enchantress (Cara Delevingne) are in love. Is that supposed to make the audience care about either of them who have no depth to their characters whatsoever? Everyone except for Deadshot, Harley, and Waller have little to no depth for the majority of the story. The only other character who gets any significant development is El Diablo, and even then, you can’t feel sympathy for him, despite David Ayer’s attempts to do so.
Slipknot is one of this movie’s biggest problems; his presence is a waste of effort across the board, from the actor to the writing, the directing, everything. You could argue that Slipknot is only there to show the squad that they could get their heads blown up, but it’s not like the soldiers are gonna bluff about killing people they would have no problem with being dead. You can tell they brought the actor on during reshoots because they thought some hole needed to be filled after they were already into the editing process when in reality, Slipknot only added to the runtime unnecessarily. He didn’t need to be in the movie just to “prove a point,” because people like soldiers aren’t gonna take any chances with super villains.
Why do writers think the sky beam is a good thing to use? Why do filmmakers keep using it for superhero movies? In only four years, it has become the most overused cliché in the genre. Ever since The Avengers used a sky beam and a portal in its climax, an unbearable amount of films have done the same, and it is old, lazy, generic, and unimaginative. STOP. USING. THE SKY BEAM.
The Joker has no impact on the story. Half of his scenes are flashbacks, and everything he does in the present time does not change any part of the conflict. His entire role is to free Harley from the squad, but even after he “dies,” she still stays with them. If the Joker had never been in the story, the outcome would have been the same. The only meaningful thing he does is break Harley out of prison at the very end, which still has no effect on the overall story. Whether you think Jared Leto was amazing or terrible as the Joker, there is no getting around this. You could cut him out of the movie and it wouldn’t make a difference.
In the end, Suicide Squad stands as the best of the first three films in the DCEU only because of two exceptional performances, despite possessing numerous issues ranging from its concept, the soundtrack, how it introduces its characters, and more.
Suicide Squad gets a D+
“‘Everything happens for a reason’ is something that we all have to tell ourselves all the time, because it’s good to have the idea that something good is around the corner.”-Margot Robbit
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