FILM REVIEW | SUICIDE SQUAD
By Lina Bujupi
Suicide Squad, written and directed by David Ayer, is the latest DC Comics film from Warner Brothers since Batman Vs Superman: Dawn of Justice. Its A-list cast features Will Smith as Deadshot, Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn and Viola Davis as Amanda Waller, to name a few.
The film begins with Amanda Waller (Davis) recruiting the worst villains to aid the national security in defeating a new enemy – an enemy by which she created in not controlling June Moone (Cara Delevigne), whose body is possessed by the evil Enchantress. The Enchantress attempts to build a new world army in the hopes of defeating the human race, and so it is up to Waller’s assemblage of some traditional DC Comics villains to become the heroes and save the world.
Davis’ Amanda Waller is compelling as she demonstrates dominance, intimidation and the closest adaptation of the character from the popular comic books. She displays this by having the villains injected with an explosive device in their neck and, at the touch of a button, she can kill them. In addition, she murders innocent people to assert her role in running the operation. She remains the true standout character in the film.
The film isn’t without many subplots. It is somewhat confusing, and the addition of some of the characters is ill-managed and not well-executed. Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) is covered up with an absurd amount of prosthetics and the audience is unable to decipher what he is actually saying in his limited dialogue. The majority of the jokes are badly shaped and do not prompt laughter in the way Deadpool did.
The predominant subplot is the relationship between Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) and the Joker (Jared Leto). With his limited exposure on the screen and tremendous adaptations in the past of the troublesome Joker, Leto’s performance is commendable with his minor presence on screen. The delivery of a toxic and fun relationship invites the viewer in as Harley Quinn’s costuming and dialogue mimic the world that is of being crazy in love.
Similarly, Smith’s performance of Deadshot is disappointing. His main driving factor is to get his daughter back (yet again another displeasing subplot) and is the only reason to join as he proclaims to be a part of the ‘Suicide Squad.’ Smith’s performance is bland and dreary, as he does not evoke the sense of being a true villain with a silly resolution to his character’s motives.
In addition, Jay Hernandez’s portrayal of Diablo, Jai Courtney as Captain Boomerang and Karen Fukuhara as Katana are uninteresting to watch on screen, making it an uncomfortable viewing experience. All are one-dimensional characters and have no real importance in the overall plot. With too many extra characters, no one is allowed to excel.
Ultimately, Suicide Squad has hindered the audience’s ability to connect to characters and in turn the overall plot. The film has an interesting premise, but its multiple technical and storytelling issues just leave the audience confused.
Lina Bujupi is a professional writing student at Victoria University and enjoys reading just as much as writing, accompanied by a great cup of tea.