The Suicide Squad is undoubtedly DC Studio’s best and brightest entry into their cinematic universe. An absolutely insane experience that pushes the envelope, unsettling even those who find gruesome violence entertaining, which is exactly why it, unfortunately, ends up falling a bit short for my liking.
Task Force X, composed of some of the most dangerous individuals the world over, is incentivized to go to the island nation of Corto Maltese to prevent a powerful weapon known only as Project Starfish from being used against the world… but mainly against liberty.
James Gunn is out of control in this one– the James Gunniest film to date! DC Studios gave him free rein and he DID NOT squander the opportunity. Yes, we absolutely still get the humor we get in Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) but this time it will be overshadowed by unsettling gore unlike anything witnessed in previous superhero films. The closest thing we can compare it to is Marvel’s Deadpool but, and I hate to say it, the balance of humor and gore felt much more balanced, not unlike thunder and lightning.
From the very first sequence in The Suicide Squad you’re always on edge, unsure of what horribly death we’ll witness next. This just didn’t make for the best viewing experience. Listen, I stand by my first statement. This is DC’s best, unfortunately though, not Gunn’s best. I know many will say the violence fits perfectly with this band of ruthless mostly-supervillains, and that may be how you feel. As for me, I would have like something that kept that great storytelling we know Gunn can deliver with less of the unnecessarily brutal violence that puts the worst Zack Snyder to shame.
I will say, we get some spectacular performances from our ensemble cast and I can excitedly say that none disappointed. Idris Elba (still waiting for him to play James Bond!) delivers a fantastic performance as usual while playing off of the very divisive John Cena as he delivers the performance of his career. As far as characters are concerned Daniela Melchior steals your heart as Ratcatcher 2. Her presence and charisma brought something so special to the rat controlling youngest member of the squad.
Of course Margot Robbie is amazing as Harley but I must say that the hands down best performance in the bunch is delivered by David Dastmalchian as the most absurd of villains Polka-Dot Man. His ability to play this disturbingly depressed and scarred man with the utmost seriousness really made his character so memorably lovable where he could have otherwise been incredibly forgettable.
The cinematography, the visuals, and the music also help elevate this one to a level yet to be seen from DC since The Dark Knight. Listen, it’s not like anyone expected this James Gunn helmed project to flop. We just wondered what bar he’d hit. It’s a higher mark than many expected. That’s actually not the case for me. I just didn’t know the bar would be so covered in guts, grey matter, and tears or that the choices Gunn made for the story would have me this scarred but alas.