Friday, August 5, 2016

Suicide Squad (2016) review

WARNING: Mild spoilers ahead!!! Read at your own risk.


     Though the critics may bash Suicide Squad for its uneven pacing, lack of addressing necessary character lore, over-flashy effects, and inconsistent script, the movie delivers an action-packed, pulpy, humorous and heart-wrenching adventure into the lives and personalities of some of DC's finest villians.

PLOT: Long after the days superheroes like Superman have vanished and stopped saving the city, a new war arises within the heart of the city. Government expert Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) constructs a plan to take all of the worst and most powerful criminals in history, put them on a team, and force them to do their bidding. These criminals include baddies like former hitman and family man, Deadshot (Will Smith), and the Joker's wife, Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) as well as others like Killer Croc, Captain Boomerang, and Diablo. This team, led by Waller and love-struck soldier, Rick Flagg (Joel Kinnaman), are sent to vanquish a supernatural entity taking residence in the body of Rick's girlfriend, June Moone (Cara Delevingne) and destroying the city. The plot is a good example of an excellent idea squandered by lack of information. The story does its best to explain the origin stories of each of our villains and succeeds in covering the basics, but fails in informing the viewer of important extended universe lore that helps drive the plot forward. Some scenes would make un-informed moviegoers scratch their heads without previous knowledge of past relationships. Otherwise, the plot is driven well and an excellent idea to expand upon for DC.

ACTING: The performances were great among the whole cast. The big name actors, like Will Smith, Margot Robbie, and Jared Leto delivered very amusing, fitting, and badass performances as Deadshot, Harley Quinn, and the Joker. Aside from these three show-stealers, the rest of the cast was just beneath them. Other shining performances would be from Joel Kinnaman as Rick Flagg, Cara Delevingne as June Moone/The Enchantress, Viola Davis as Amanda Weller, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc, and Jay Hernandez as Diablo. Most of the performances were right on the money even when other aspects of the movie weren't. The talented cast I believe is truly what saved the movie from completely sinking.

SCORE/SOUNDTRACK: The soundtrack in the movie was very well chosen and developed. A lot of the better points in the movie were either punctuated by a relateable, classic rock track or a song newly recorded for the movie. With artists ranging from Black Sabbath and The Rolling Stones to Skrillex and Twenty One Pilots, the soundtrack is very diverse and does its best to keep the flow rolling throughout the movie's entire runtime. For the most part, it does a pretty good job of accomplishing that.

EFFECTS: Suicide Squad's special effects are entirely way too flashy and hit-and-miss for the movie's cause. The effects alternate between something that looks really cool and unique to the equivalent of a computer's graphics card vomiting upon the screen. It feels like the makers of this movie sunk so much into special effects that they forget to touch everything else up. They're way too worried about things looking good than the substance needed to put into it.

OTHER CONTENT: Suicide Squad, contrary to popular critics' beliefs, is NOT a bad movie. It does have several issues as a standalone piece of work, but for fans who already know the characters, storyline, and source material beforehand, it's a rather interesting treat to see how the actors, producers, and director portrayed the comic book characters. Some of the problems the movie has that haven't already been covered would be the pacing and some of the scriptwriting. The pacing of the movie is uneven, varying from moving in fast forward to dragging through formulaic Hollywood pizazz like a snail. The movie does succeed in making the audience want more, but to what extent is too far? It seems we were cheated out of what could have been so much more. The script and screenplay aren't necessarily that bad, but some lines and situations would have been better to just be left out when compared to everything else as a whole. Aside all of the problems previously mentioned, Suicide Squad is still a fun and refreshing breath into a once-dead comic book spin-off. The movie is filled with enough action, personality, and neo-pulpy style that comes as close to feeling as if you were watching the zaniness and intensity of a real comic book playing out before you on screen. The movie focused on its characters and rightfully so, as they were the savior of the entire movie, especially watching the heartbreaking love story between Harley and Joker as well as the backstories of our betrayed "heroes". The movie is actually pretty good if one doesn't set his or her standards too high.

     DC's Suicide Squad does have its issues, from pacing issues to lack of information to flashy special effects, but there's so much more at the heart of it. The movie boasts a talented cast, fresh and pulpy action, excellent one-liners, and a heavy emotional impact for the fans. It's a big, lovely mess of mediocre mistakes and emotional impact as crazy yet loveable as Harley Quinn herself.

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