Thrown back into the world of DC villains, The Suicide Squad directed by James Gunn, delivers a fun energized experience we haven’t seen from a DC film since Shazam(2019).With plenty of exciting action sequences and non stop comedy, James Gunn’s take feels as if it was plucked out of Marvel’s formula. Curated classic tunes interjected throughout will provide comfort for any fan of Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy films. Even though the songs aren’t as important to the characters and the story as the Guardians films, they still deliver an eire of comfort and style that Gunn has perfected. To my surprise, the good outweighed the bad in this strangely concocted sequel re-boot.
A star studded cast with Idris Elba, John Cena and Margot Robbie, but no particular stand out performance to note. Idris Elba and John Cena have pretty fun chemistry playing off each other, competing for who’s the best assassin. They attempt to play at your heart strings in a couple moments with some family motivated sequences, but they don’t land as well as they probably had hoped. A lot of these particular moments feel forced and out of place. There’s one particular scene where a character recalls a flashback with their father and they tell the story while the memory plays out in the reflection of the vehicle they’re riding in. There are no other flashback sequences like this throughout the film, which makes it feel disingenuous and fake. Other characters explain their back story without the backdrop of a flashback and these all work without issue. To me a character explaining their past with a strong performance is so much more powerful of an experience than forcing the viewer to see a flashback. It’s a tired and overused trope that I wish would go away, but alas Hollywood loves their flashbacks.
Even with all of its flaws, this film still is able to deliver an enjoyable experience. It had me engaged and laughing throughout.
The time structure of the story is confusing at times. They utilize a broken timeline to keep you engaged where they’ll show an action sequence and then in the middle of the sequence they cut away to a tile screen that says “3 days earlier”, tell the back story, and then jump back into the action scene. Without this type of timeline playing a critical role in the experience of the story, it can become exhausting and feel out of place. They have a fun use of the title sequences that help push the characters along in their journey, but I feel like the broken timeline aspect doesn’t serve a specific purpose to the story telling here.
This is probably the most violent film the DC franchise has put out which allows for some crazy fun action sequences. Lots of blood and guts as our “heroes” cut through enemies while still keeping it light hearted. Thankfully it never takes a dark turn towards the typical serious side that previous DC films have relied on. Gunn’s style stays consistent throughout the entire film all the way up until the wacky conclusion.
Even with all of its flaws, this film still is able to deliver an enjoyable experience. It had me engaged and laughing throughout. It was a nice feeling to be back in a packed theater watching a high octane comedy. Hearing everyone’s “Ohh” reactions when an over the top violent sequence happens makes my own experience that much more fun. Seeing a movie on the big screen with a packed audience is always the best way to enjoy something like The Suicide Squad. I’m glad I didn’t just watch this at home via HBOMax. I’m not sure how I feel about films releasing on a streaming service the same day as a theater launch day. I just hope this isn’t the beginning of the end of cinema theaters.These types of big budget action movies deserve to be experienced on the big screen.