Starring: Will Smith, Jared Leto, Margot Robbie, Jai Courtney, Joel Kinnaman
Director: David Ayer
Synopsis: In the wake of the events of Batman V Superman, the unscrupulous Amanda Waller puts together a team of villains, controlled by implanted explosives and offers of reduced prison sentences, to fight any threat she requires. The criminals must unite to fight a powerful and mysterious entity while the Joker has plans of his own.
The film is lively and somewhat colourful, throwing in a few jokes and a couple of great Ben Affleck cameos as Batman and a wonderful performance by current superstar Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn. Unfortunately that’s all the positive aspects of an uneven, hectic mess of a film that fails to add anything unique to the DC Movie Universe or to comic book films in general.
DC continues it’s ‘plan’ to create a cinematic universe with this incoherent mess, throwing in flashbacks at a whim to try and explain the motivations of several characters. The only characters that have any real substance are Harley Quinn and Will Smith’s Deadshot while everyone else suffers from being in the background and/or not being developed enough. One character is even introduced after the others for the specific purpose of dying. Meanwhile the plot lumbers from scene to scene with characters attempting to explain what’s happening to no avail and the action scenes failing to add anything special.
Jared Leto’s Joker also fails to hold the screen in the way previous incarnations have and while nobody should try to emulate the versions given life by Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger, a new portrayal that comes across as a gang leader with an image problem doesn’t capture the essence of the comic book character in any way. Perhaps further screen time and development could produce a Joker worthy of following the late Heath Ledger however it feels like another misstep so far. Although his laugh is pretty solid.
DC’s master plan has stumbled again with another blockbuster that has made money but failed to hit the mark with critics and most fans, although some vocal fans have supported the movie. Hardcore fans have even set up petitions to remove Rotten Tomatoes, a website which aggregates critics’ reviews and gave Suicide Squad a poor rating of 26%, from the internet and more talk of Disney paying off critics to slate DC films has emerged. The fact that these rumours and petitions exist is simply a display of the lack of quality that DC has thus far produced. Hope remains with the interesting-looking Wonder Woman and Ben Affleck’s commitment to the role, while early footage of Justice League seems to show a lighter tone that may pay off.
See the trailer for Suicide Squad below, followed by the Wonder Woman trailer and early footage of Justice League, both due for release in 2017.