Suicide Squad: The Not So Bad And The Not So Good
Thoughts by Stephanie Cooke
Let’s start out this review with me simply stating for the DC fanboys out there that I ended up enjoying Suicide Squad.
Normally I’d aim to do a spoiler free review as much as possible here but I’m just going to let my spoiler freak Captain Flag fly (see what I did there?!). But seriously. Spoilers ahead. Maybe. Possibly. Probably. You’ve sort of been warned.
Suicide Squad. The script was apparently written in six weeks and it absolutely shows. That script was… uh… well, it read like something written in six weeks. The dialogue is pretty awful. Not as bad as some stuff (I’m looking at you, Batman vs. Superman) but also, not great.
That being said, generally speaking, I ended up still liking the film a lot more than I thought I would. For me, the story would’ve worked a LOT better if the script had found a more organic way to show us the origins of the characters. Harley and Enchantress are the only ones who really get any actual origin while the rest just get the origin of them being imprisoned. Still, the first little bit of the film is kind of hella boring as we get tiptoed through all of this by Amanda Waller, who is desperate for her little project to get approval. Spoilers, it does and we’re off to the races.
Here are some lingering questions:
- Why does Waller send Enchantress in… it’s super unclear to me why she thinks that Enchantress would help her in any way, despite having her heart. Obviously WE know that Enchantress is actually behind everything and despite the fact that Wallet doesn’t, this still seems like a questionable move.
- Along those lines, why does Flag LET Waller do this to June who so very clearly wants NOTHING TO DO WITH THIS. What does Waller have on June herself to let her be a part of this madness? At one point Waller says that she would put June in a coma but like, what.
- Boomerang. I just… I… I don’t even know why you included this character. “What do you do?” “Me? I throw boomerangs.” “Oh, ok. Seems legit.” NO IT DOES NOT SEEM LEGIT. Y U HERE? He adds less than nothing to the film and you could honestly just replace him with a sexy, dirty lamp and you would be none the wiser. A sexy lamp actually makes more sense. I’m not sure how yet but I’ll get back to you on that (I probably won’t…).
- Why would June, an ARCHAEOLOGIST discover a cave and violate everything that she believes in by disturbing the things around her also breaking them? I got the vibe that she was sort of being coerced along the way but like, come on.
- Along the same lines: why would June be traveling forests that she is UNFAMILIAR WITH by herself. Where’s her team? Where are her tools? WHERE IS HER COMMON SENSE (and later, her clothes….)
“Brother, share your power with me and that super cute bra and loin cloth you have stashed in your magical bag of wonders!”
Look, I get it. Cara Delevigne is real cute. Really. But guess what? She can still be real cute with pants on. GIVE HER SOME PANTS. I’m pretty sure that Enchantress would’ve been a lot nicer if someone had just let her have a bath. Or again, some pants.
- EVERYTHING ABOUT THE JOKER. WHY. This isn’t actually something I want an answer to. I honestly just want to scrub my brain of the whole thing and forget how disgustingly dirty he made me feel inside.
“But that’s the point!” the fanboys scream. No. NooooOOOOoooOoo. Just no. Leto is not playing The Joker. Leto is playing some psychotic rodeo clown who hit his head, joined a biker gang, got some “baller” tattoos and decided to go freelance but give a shout out to his honest roots in show business.
You know what… I have a lot of other questions but this is starting to border on sounding like a really negative review of the film and as I mentioned, I actually didn’t hate it. Really.
Thus far, this is the most fun that DC has let any of their characters have in the film universe. Harley and Deadshot carry the film from start to finish. Both Margot Robbie and Will Smith kill it. You know, as villains do. I have some (NAY, MANY) issues with how Harley is treated throughout the course of the film but for her first live action appearance on the big screen, I was really pleased.
Viola Davis is a badass as Amanda Waller. Really. She is stone cold and she owns it.
Everyone else is mostly forgettable. Not because they don’t do a good job with what they’ve been given. It just has everything to do with exactly what it is they’ve been given. I have this odd affection for Delevingne as a person and even though there were several moments with her that made me cringe, I truly don’t believe that’s the fault of her acting abilities and rather the fault of the direction she was given for the character.
At the end of the day (or in this case, at the end of the film), I enjoyed it. I was entertained. I’m happy I didn’t shell out the money for a $23 VIP ticket (although they do serve you booze…). The price of admission was worth it for the fun of the film and that’s really all you can ask for.
…and yet, hear my plea going forward, DC. For the Harley Quinn solo movie you have planned: DO NOT USE LETO’S JOKER. Just let her have her own adventures. Just do it. I don’t think I can stomach more than what we got of him in Suicide Squad. Even THAT was too much and I really just hope I never have to see him take up that role ever again. It wasn’t edgy. It wasn’t interesting. It wasn’t notable. It was horrendous at best and for all the wrong reasons.
I wasn’t actually going to include a verdict here since I kind of felt like these were more just my thoughts as opposed to a proper review but you know what, I’m doing it. Suicide Squad was a lot better than I had anticipated. Again, it’s not great but it is a fun popcorn flick. There are some “Ummm…” moments with the special effects (and with Cara Delevingne’s voice modifications) and I definitely don’t think that this movie needs to be seen in 3D (although it’s nearly impossible to find a theatre NOT showing it as such…), but yeah. I liked it.
What is the world coming to!