Tuesday, August 23, 2016
Release Date:Aug 05, 2016
Runtime:2 hr. 3 min.
Cast:Will Smith, Margot Robbie, Jared Leto, Joel Kinnaman, Jai Courtney, Cara Delevingne, Viola Davis, Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, Jay Hernandez, Ike Barinholtz.
It's been an uphill battle for DC Comics, coming off of a lackluster "Batman v Superman" amidst a barrage of hype. And it's been no easy task of fending off Marvel, which has outdone itself in both Netflix and film. Yet "Suicide Squad" imbued a small inkling of hope, touting a power-stacked cast and a reputable director. Its marketing alone was effective to say the least, teasing and coaxing the inner fanboy. But optimism aside, it still wasn't enough to keep "Squad" from falling short of wayward expectations. To start with the positives, it's entertaining for the most part – envisioning characters, old and new, in a psychedelic universe. Embellished in graphics and maniacal in nature, the film veers in its own unique direction. Continuing from where "BvS" left off, a new task force is assembled, employing some of the world's most dangerous criminals. Led by intelligence operative Amanda Waller (Davis) and Colonel Rick Flag (Kinnaman), the team is assigned to battle powers unknown. Will Smith as 'Deadshot' is easily the most recognizable, using his Hollywood stature to domineer the film. As a result, he acquires the most character development, in comparison to others who fall wayside with limited exposure. Cara Delevingne, in particular, is the weak link of the group, as beauty undermines acting suitable for the role. On the flip-side, Jared Leto takes on the titular Joker, having undergone another ultra-dramatic transformation. Over-the-top and excessively unhinged, he's a polarizing rendition that we have seen thus far. Standing alongside the likes of Jack Nicholson and Heath Ledger, Leto is distinctive, if not unforgettable. Is he the best? Certainly not. But there's a humane side to him that feels new to the role. Margot Robbie, on the other hand, is rather underwhelming, as her wide-eyed lunacy comes off ditzy and superficial. The complexity of Harley Quinn is what makes her appealing and this, unfortunately, is not thoroughly conveyed. So much of the film seems like a missed opportunity and it's a shame, really, to knock it for its delivery. This could be attributed to the editing of the film, with rumors of Ayer being overlooked for a trailer production company. With so much time and effort being spent on visual integrity, the execution suffers greatly, whether ill-advised or intentionally. But if anything else, at least the soundtrack is enjoyable, and there's always those fun, abbreviated trailers. While DC still has a lot of catching up to do, the chance at success may lie near in the future. Next up to the plate: "Wonder Woman."
Rating: 2½ stars