Montag, 5. September 2016

SUICIDE SQUAD - Movie Review

Title: Suicide Squad
Running Time: 123 min
Director: David Ayer
Starring: Will Smith, Margot Robbie, Jared Leto, Cara Delevingne, Viola Davis, Jai Courtney, Joel Kinnaman, Jay Hernandez, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje

Everyone was quite confused when Marvel Studios announced they would be making a movie about a superhero team including a talking racoon and a tree alien with Hodor-level vocabulary. But this group of misfits and D-list comicbook characters took audiences by storm from the first trailer all the way to the Box Office. Fox made its own risky move early this year by releasing Deadpool, which ended up proving that your protagonist could as well be a foul-mouthed, ruthless killer. Warner Brothers and DC were watching closely and have now answered with a combination of the two: "Suicide Squad" became one of the most anticipated movies of the year and spawned tons of cosplays and merchandise even before its release. Everyone seemed pumped to see Will Smith's charismatic portrayal of Deadshot, the beautiful Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, and of course Jared Leto's introduction of a brand-new version of the Clown Prince himself. All eyes were on the DCEU this summer. Audiences were expecting the extravagant fun ride that was promised in the trailer. Warner Bros hoped for an all around hit. Critics sought redemption for BvS. Should this be the film to please them all?
Unfortunately it is not. "Suicide Squad" leaves you with the same overall impression you seem to get from every cinematic DC property nowadays: Extremely cool idea, frustratingly sloppy execution. Yes, frustrating it is, because in its core there is actually a lot to love about "Suicide Squad". Will Smith is back in action and brings his trademark charm that has been missing on screen the last couple of years. In the second third of the film he has a scene where Deadshot is just on a roll, shooting folks left and right as if he never did anything else. It's pretty phat. Next to him is Margot Robbie, showing that she has not only a bombshell body, but also a crazy-fun persona that absolutely enchants you. Even Jai Courtney, who has been terrible in everything else he was in (but seems to have the best agent in the world as he keeps getting roles in big budget blockbusters), is absolutely hilarious as the weirdo from downunder. Generally unkown Jay Hernandez is surprisingly genuine, Joel Kinnaman definitively redeems himself for the RoboCop Remake and Cara Delevingne's first few transformations into the Enchantress look just god-damn cool. The costume and prop department do a fantastic job in making these comicbook characters come to live in a stylish and unique way (with few exceptions, but we'll get to that). And then especially Harley Quinn and Captain Boomerang have some pretty comedic moments that totally work. Furthermore, the soundtrack of the movie consists of some dope tunes from years past, but this is also the point where problems start to surface:
Too often do these songs feel shoehorned in so unsubtle that you can almost hear the filmmakers shouting at you: "Just look how cool and rebellious this is!" Then there are the character arcs which aren't really arcs for most of them but rather straight lines. Slipknot's is more like a dot, and Killer Croc doesn't bring much more to the table. He is basically just a walking prop that is just there for looking bad-ass. 
The way the film is put together is problematic as well. A series of flashbacks explains a lot of backstory, but they seem to be scattered through the film randomly. Sometimes we don't really know what that flashbak is supposed to tell us, sometimes we already know the things the flashback tells us. It's a little messy. And as so often with DC, the movie doesn't quite know what kind of story it wants to tell. On one hand it tries to be a movie about "the worst of the worst", on the other hand it tries to humanize them and make them "not-so-bad-after-all". It is a very apparent contradiction. And let's not forget there is a Harley Quinn & the Joker story in there as well. What you get to see of their relationship really envokes your curiosity but is too little to completely grab you. The same goes for the Joker himself. Jared Leto's performance is a unique one, and he creates something of his own instead of trying to replicate what Ledger and Nicholson have done. Whether you are on board with his interpretation is certainly a question of taste, but even if you enjoy his take on Gotham's Craziest there simply isn't enough to give you a fully realized picture of the character. If you can believe Jared Leto there were a whole lot more scenes that ended up on the cutting room floor. One could argue that this footage probably would have been very interesting to explore, but then again the movie is already convoluted enough.
And with all the fuzz and all these crazy characters, the film ends with a third act that couldn't be more generic. The Enchantress, who started as an intriguing character, turns into a cookie-cutter female version of the X-Men's boringly executed Apocalypse, striving for the most uninspired villainous goal of them all: world domination. She does so by using a gigantic blue beam to destruct/attak earth as previously seen in The Avengers, Man of Steel, Fant4stic, Avengers: Age of Ultron and so many more. By this time her outter appearance has already turned from a bad-ass creepy witch into an awkwardly dancing CGI disaster that would have blended in better with a schlock fest like "Gods of Egypt". Oh, and she brings her (even worse looking) brother along, who brings as much depth to the screen as the fake plastic baby from "American Sniper". The Squad however is able to defeat them with the power of friendship. It is really really lazy.
There was a hell of a lot of potential in "Suicide Squad" that sadly stays untapped. Still, you can find a good amount of fun in this film and you can not help but get excited for what they could do with the characters in the future. With all its flaws it stays a watchable blockbuster. Already there is talk about a director's cut that apparently fixes the problems. So if you are just seeking two-hours of simple entertainment then this film does the job. But (unlike people who piss Amanda Waller off) your mind will not be blown.

For Fans Of:
Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016)
X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)
Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
The Expandables 2 (2012)
The Losers (2010)
Batman: Assault on Arkham (2014) 
Man of Steel (2013) 

Click Here To Watch Trailer!

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