SUICIDE SQUAD Review; "It's A Mess, But At Least It's An Entertaining One"

SUICIDE SQUAD Review; "It's A Mess, But At Least It's An Entertaining One"

While some critics would have you believe that Suicide Squad is the worst CBM ever made, the truth is that it's actually pretty damn good. Unfortunately, it's also far from the home run we hoped for.

Suicide Squad is a tough movie to review. It's without a doubt a lot of fun and nowhere near as bad as you've been led to believe by the vast majority of critics, but it also has a very long list of problems. It's clear from the very start that large chunks of the movie have been butchered in the editing room, with the flashbacks which kick the movie off condensed to the point that they just frustrate due to their brevity. We're also introduced to the members of Task Force X at least two or three different times, while notable scenes from the trailers and key moments we've seen play out in set photos have completely vanished, pointing to large chunks of the Suicide Squad being left sitting on the cutting room floor for reasons unknown. It's also quite jarring how the first half of the movie relies heavily on some great music only to completely drop that in the second for a conventional score. Because of all of this and more (which I'll get to in an upcoming in-depth breakdown), Suicide Squad is undeniably a mess, but at least it's an entertaining one. 

That's largely down to the cast. Will Smith steals the show as Deadshot, and it's the actor's best performance in years. He's clearly having fun here, and it shows, while the character gets many of Suicide Squad's best lines and moments. Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn is a close second, though whether or not she's really compelling enough to hold her own in a spinoff movie is debatable because the character is ultimately pretty one dimensional. Viola Davis' Amanda Waller is also great (she's probably the best villain we've seen in the DC Films Universe so far), while Joel Kinnaman's Rick Flag is definitely a pleasant surprise. Jai Courtney doesn't get quite enough screentime to deliver the kind of performance which would have made him a standout, but he's still great, and the same can be said for Jay Hernandez as El Diablo before some last minute creative decisions pretty much ruin the character. Everyone else fades into the background, with Killer Croc, Katana, Slipknot, and Scott Eastwood's Lt. GQ Edwards all complete non-entities. Still, they serve a purpose and are thankfully a million times better than Enchantress, a horrible villain brought to life with a so so performance by Cara Delevingne. The less said about her CGI accomplice, the better, because there you have one of the worst superhero movie villains in history with a plan so generic that it will make you think we've travelled back to the genre's mostly dark days in the mid 2000s. 

Of course, the character pretty much everyone cares about is The Joker, so how does Jared Leto do? It's hard to say considering the fact that most of his performance was cut down to frustratingly brief clips which never give us chance to get to know him. Despite playing a key role in the story, he's been blatantly shoehorned in probably just to give Warner Bros. a familiar name to promote Suicide Squad around, and his lack of screentime is rather infuriating as a result. An argument could be made that this isn't his movie, and while that's true, he probably should have just been the main big bad here. Still, the movie definitely whets the appetite for more Joker, so hopefully we'll get to see Leto really shine somewhere down the line. As for Batman, if you're expecting more than ninety seconds of the Dark Knight, you'll be really p*ssed off. He too is rather pointlessly thrown in. 

When Suicide Squad works though, it really is amazing. The action is excellent, the acting is often superb, and it's most definitely fun. However, the fact that it suffers from some major pacing and editing issues really holds it back and ruins the experience somewhat, and while that may sound like a complaint likely to only bother stuffy film critics, these pose the same sort of problem to Suicide Squad as they did in the likes of The Amazing Spider-Man and Fantastic Four. You don't need to be a pretentious ass to be baffled by a random flashback in the middle of the third act telling us something we already know or to realise that the final battle is way too long. On the plus side, I definitely came out of the movie wanting to see more of Task Force X, but what about director David Ayer? You can tell he wrote the screenplay in six weeks, so if he were return, it would hopefully be with significantly more time and less interference from Warner Bros. 

Suicide Squad is well worth watching and the majority of fans will definitely have a good time. Unfortunately, it definitely disappoints in a lot of ways, and as a result, it isn't really the movie Task Force X deserved or the release which will put the DC Films Universe on the path many feel it should be taking. Honestly, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice was way better. 

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