As the division moves ahead between critics and fans, the once anticipated villain mash-up film that is Suicide Squad has hit theaters for the general public to blindly follow or criticize like no one has done before, but luckily you have me, the ultimate median of film reviewing to break down what this movie actually is. But to be fare, it took fans by surprise when the early reviews of the film hit the internet after receiving harsh statements from critics whom screened the film early. Similar to it’s other DC counterpart(s) that is Batman v Superman, Suicide Squad will likely separate movie goers like this current election, but at least the film has better haircuts.
Let’s cut the chase early on, the film isn’t great, but it isn’t as bad as you’ve likely read. Instead of taking the realistic approach, fans and critics are causing fissures and chambers of blind perception without taking the product for what is, and the product is a lackluster narrative wrapped in some kick-ass action. Director David Ayer seemed to be the perfect guy for the film after his work on End of Watch and Fury which he both wrote and directed and WB should stand by their choice, but where he normally hits the mark in his movies, he either struck out swinging or just didn’t swing at all, but I’m not convinced that there isn’t yet another version of the film we have yet to see. The fear I have is that there is yet another cut of the film worth seeing, not being shown in theaters in fear people weren’t going to like it, and that sucks major booty cheeks. The limited plot doesn’t seem to care about detail and instead focuses on banter – albeit funny banter – and well shot military style action scenes.
The chemistry and portrayals of the comic book baddies were done terrifically by all their actors even with their little screen time (not including the Fresh Prince), and as I said in the Batman v Superman review, the potential is clearly there, but DC/WB just can’t seem to get a quality narrative going for them with their movies. Ayer’s action direction is no doubt the strongest aspect of the film and there were moments that a dimly lit light would shine on the villainy of our characters like we would hope, but the film falls to the desire to make villains into anti-heroes by the third act. There are cool arcs to the characters we do get, but they are only pieces to a machine that should have been running on action and a sense of constant distress between rich characters.
Whether the reshoots for the film added the multiple funny bits we are given or not, I can tell you that Will Smith is the constant that makes you stay on board. Deadshot is worthy of his own movie and you’ll want more of him, plain and simple. The Joker and Harley Quinn chemistry is just as strange as they are which works in the long run and a few other characters and actors were completely pointless and wasted like you couldn’t believe. But the one vexing detail that gets me is the scope of the destruction in the film which just felt bloated. It’s always fine for a film to have huge destruction or larger villains to give the protagonists a challenge, but the issue X-Men: Apocalypse, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Batman v Superman often had was the city destroying battles and it just keeps showing up. This could have been a hit with a smaller scale and a more focused plot and couple that with the banter and action that Ayer gets from the actors then we could have had something special.