So, this weekend I managed to pull a few of my friends together to go see Suicide Squad. I had heard a lot of mixed reviews for the movie, generally putting it in to a you’ll either love it or hate it category. I’ll say I’ve never really read the Suicide Squad comic books, maybe a couple of issues total, but I was probably more familiar with a lot of the characters then a lot of the people who were at the theater to see this. I’m pretty sure that DC was banking on people seeing Will Smith in the cast and going to see it just because of that. Well, that and Margot Robbie’s rear in hanging out for most of the movie. They do play probably the two most recognizeable characters out of any of the others, except maybe Killer Croc which I’ll get to that later. Mostly the characters are from Batman’s rogue gallery, with Captain Boomerang thrown in from the Flash’s rogues.
The movie starts off with Amanda Waller, played by Viola Davis, trying to convince the sheriff from Stranger Things about the importance of having this team and why they should be put together. It then proceeds to go from character to character describing who they are and how they were captured. Starting with Deadshot getting caught by Batman because Argus (the military group behind all this) tipped him off about where he was, which was out having father/daughter night in Gotham. They then show Captain Boomerang, who for some reason is given a weird fixation on a pink unicorn in this, robbing a bank somewhere and being caught by the Flash because, hey Justice League. It then moves on to talk about Harley Quinn and her odd relationship with the Joker who was played by Jared Leto.
So if you were to say there were three main characters in the movie it would probably be Deadshot, Harley Quinn and Rick Flag (played by Joel Kinnaman). Mainly because other then those three you could almost not care about any of the other characters, except maybe Diablo because honestly he seemed to be the most sensible of them. The problem with this is that they tried to cram in way to many characters, most of which weren’t important. This includes the member that is figuratively thrown away five minutes after they introduce him. Tip, if they don’t give your character a backstory you probably won’t make it to long. And thus you get the character that was so not-memorable I couldn’t have told you his name three minutes after they introduced him. I pretty much disliked every character other then Diablo, Deadshot, Harley Quinn and Rick Flag. There was an entire cast of additional cannon fodder soldiers with them as well, but they were never given names and thus you don’t need to worry about them.
So to be entirely honest, I liked Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn but I dislike how they treated her character. It was like the whole point of the movie was so that she was walking around wet, in a t-shirt and the tightest, shortest shorts produce-able without this being a Cinemax movie. Her character is basically treated like a piece of meat in every single scene she is in. And not even subtly. There are several scenes where the male characters are just staring at her butt as she walks away. They even imply at the beginning that while she is locked up in Belle Reeve that she’s banging half of the guards just because she likes it. Which is their weird way of introducing the Joker subplot that was in no way needed for this movie. So, yes I liked her as the character but I feel like they just put her there for eye candy.
So then there is the Joker, in the most obviously unnecessary use ever. He starts off the movie in flashbacks to explain who Harley Quinn is and immediately becomes the worst version of the Joker ever put on a screen. And that is including 1960’s Joker, who was at least reflective of the 1950/1960’s Joker. Now, I guess there are versions of the Joker that have been all tattoo’d and silver teethed but they pretty much just made him a douchebag. I think the only part of his character they wrote correctly was his messed up relationship with her. It goes quickly from him using her to get out of Arkham to him trying to give her away like property to him leaving her to die to him wanting to break her out of prison. All of that inside a span of 10 minutes. So aside from the character just not working for me they gave him the worst character design and actor that they could have. Jared Leto just didn’t work for me, though to be fair it was a pretty impossible task to come in behind Heath Ledger who I’d say is the best live action Joker. I say live action because nobody beats Mark Hamill. Thankfully the Joker is not in much of the movie, and even when he’s there he feels like he was forced in to the script. And with so much of his part getting cut it leaves massive gaps in the plot.
The second biggest problem with the movie was the villains in the movie, the Enchantress and her brother. I literally don’t remember if they give him a name, just refer to him as her brother the entire time and provides a massive logic fail. I’m not going to fault the actress for the role, I just think she was directed horribly and written horribly. She spends the majority of the movie looking like she is having a seizure. I really can’t say much about the character other then it was probably one of the worst villains in a movie ever. The only reason she even had a chance against the other characters was because she was almost the only one with powers at all.
So considering I just spent close to 1000 words talking about everything I didn’t like I would still say that I enjoyed the movie overall. If you they had just had a better villain or at least a more convincing one that part might have worked better. But, if they had just taken out all of the Joker bits the movie would have been immensely better. If I had to make a list of things I didn’t like it would be (in order): The Joker, the over sexualization of Harley Quinn, the villain and then Killer Croc. It’s hard to explain why I didn’t like his character other then I feel like he was a walking stereotype. The other thing I didn’t feel needed to be there was how they tried to make it a lead in to Justice League by including Batman and the Flash.
So overall I am not saying I hated or disliked the movie. I would say it was alright. It certainly is not the worst super-hero genre movie but is far from the best. I think they tried to squeeze in to many unknown/useless characters that I just didn’t care about. There are several characters that I just didn’t talk about, primarily Kitana who barely has any lines and is just used to provide a one liner and part of the resolution to the end of the movie.
If you haven’t seen this yet I would pretty much just advise either waiting to rent it or to see it at a matinee showing, but only if it is under $10. The movie is not terrible, but it is a hot mess. I would like to see maybe the directors cut of the movie, because I think a lot of the problem with it came from the editing that was done and all the reshoots they did to add in the comedy and to keep it from getting an R rating.