Film Review: Suicide Squad
One of the year’s most hotly anticipated films was released in cinemas across the world this summer to mixed reviews. While Suicide Squad earned over $700 million worldwide, the critics despised it – with most of the scorn aimed at its weak and poorly structured script. But despite some of its obvious shortcomings, there’s a lot of fun to be had here.
When intelligence officer Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) assembles a team of incarcerated criminals for a secret mission, the squad soon find themselves battling against a mysterious entity that threatens the fate of the entire human race.
For all the devious schemes and explosive action sequences, what really catches your attention is the impeccable cast. Will Smith excels as the ruthless assassin Deadshot and Jai Courtney adds a good dose of humour as master thief, Boomerang. As a stranger to the comic book universe, this was the first time I had ever heard of these characters – but there’s one Suicide Squad star who everyone knows.
Stepping into the shoes of Batman’s arch nemesis is never an easy task – especially when you have to follow Heath Ledger’s unforgettable performance that earned him a posthumous Oscar – but Jared Leto pulls it off wonderfully. Embodying all of The Joker’s sinister charms and even revealing a slightly softer side through his dysfunctional relationship with Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), Leto doesn’t waste a second of his limited screen-time.
But the real star of the show is Margot Robbie’s crazed Harley Quinn. Oozing charisma from her first scene to her last, Robbie’s exhilarating performance as the psychiatrist-turned-sociopathic criminal is easily the best thing in the film.
Sadly, alongside these fantastic characters are some deeply disappointing ones. Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje’s role as the Killer Croc is essentially comprised of the occasional grunt. Meanwhile, expert swordswoman Katana (Karen Fukuhara), whose magical blade traps the souls of her victims, is given such little screen-time that she feels more like a tagalong than an active member of the squad.
Another let-down is the film’s main antagonist Enchantress (Cara Delevingne). Despite the haunting portrayal by Cara Delevingne and the mesmerising special effects, her main motives are confined to the dull world domination formula, that has been used time and time again including in this year’s underwhelming X-Men: Apocalypse.
While far from perfect, Suicide Squad’s electrifying action, killer soundtrack and outrageously fun characters make it a great piece of entertainment.