On Monday August 1, 2016 I had the extreme pleasure of attending the advance IMAX 3D screening of Suicide Squad. This is the third film in the current DC Comic Cinematic Universe. Unlike Man of Steel and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, Suicide Squad is not directed by Zack Snyder nor did he have a hand in writing the script (he is however, a producer). This film is written and directed by David Ayer. It is set to be released nationwide on August 5, 2016 with a PG-13 rating and a run time of 2 hours and 10 minutes.
*Important note* Part 1 of this review will remain spoiler free. Part 2 will contain major spoilers. There will be a spoiler warning with the introduction of Part 2.
I will start out this review with a bit of honesty. I was extremely on the fence about this movie. My expectations were low however I walked out of the theater more pleased than I have ever felt with previous films in the current DC Cinematic Universe. Suicide Squad is easily my favorite movie they have done thus far. One of the reasons for this is, despite changing some of the characters physical appearances (The Joker for example was modeled after a Mexican Cartel), the personality of the characters remained true to the comic. In a Universe where we have a depressed and self loathing Superman and a murderous Batman, this was a refreshing change.
The multiracial cast includes a Japanese woman (Karen Fukuhara as Katana), a Latino (Jay Hernandez as Diablo), a Saulteaux of the Ojibwa Nation (Adam Beach as Slipknot), an African-American male (Will Smith as Deadshot), and an English actor of Nigerian origin (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje as Killer Croc). I don't think I have to explain how important it is to have a variety of minorities represented in a comic book film. Well done DC and Warner Brothers. This Latina truly appreciates it. In addition to featuring a large ethnic cast, there are several strong female characters; Harley Quinn, Katana and Enchantress. This gets another A+ from me as females are often under represented in these types of movies. We don't get just one strong female character. We get three solid kick-ass women.
Suicide Squad is a story of criminals, both "normal" and meta-humans, who are recruited by Amanda Waller to help save the world. In exchange they earn time off from their prison sentence. Things however don't quite go according to plan. Attacks are launched, arguments erupt and secrets are revealed. Some will make it, others may not.
I greatly enjoyed David Ayer's directing and storytelling. There are some visually stunning action sequences that will captivate the audience. I highly recommend watching it in IMAX 3D to fully enjoy the visual effects. Suicide Squad stands out amongst previous DCU films for two very important reasons; it's witty and fun. There are scenes between certain characters that are pulled straight out of the comics and various animated series. Suicide Squad stuck closer to the original source material than Man of Steel or Dawn of Justice. It is because of this, that I find the film to be the best out of the 3 thus far. Having someone other than Zack Snyder at the helm also proves just how entertaining a DC film can actually be. I found the cast to be excellent and didn't find anyone to be horribly miscast or terribly written (*cough* Jesse Eisenberg as Lex Luthor *cough*). Actress Viola Davis slaughtered the role of Amanda Waller and the character was written very well. For those Joker and Harley fans out there, trust me when I say you will not be disappointed.
I was concerned that with a cast of characters this big, there was no possible way the film was even going to attempt to dive into origins. I'm happy to report that I was wrong. Several character origins are explored and are done so in a very entertaining fashion. There are two love stories at the center of this film and they are both done wonderfully.
I think my only complaint is Deadshot not wearing his mask. He puts it on for a whole of 1 minute. It smacks of Hollywood this-actor-is-such-a-huge-star-we-won't-put-a-mask-on-him excuse. It would have been nice if there was a bit more accuracy there. The ending of the film was exciting. Be sure to stay in your seats when the movie is over! Yes, there is an end credit scene! They pulled a Marvel and it's important to watch this scene as it ties into the Justice League, due out next year.
*Spoiler Alert!* Major Spoilers Ahead
There were several things incorporated in this film that will make comic fans squeal with glee such as the following; Margot Robbie wears the jester suit! But wait it gets better. She and Jared Leto recreate the iconic Alex Ross cover! I just about died in my seat! Talk about fan service! David Ayer has my eternal thanks and gratitude for bringing Alex Ross' art to life!
For those who are fans of the best selling graphic novel, 'Mad Love', you will not be disappointed. We see Doctor Harleen Quinzel treating the Joker at Arkham but it goes one step further. How the Joker converted Harley to the dark side gets more fleshed out. After he breaks out, he tortures her with electroshock therapy to scramble her brain. Then, after having her proclaim her loyalty to him (which sound a lot like wedding vows), she willing jumps into a tank of chemicals. The Joker begins to walk away, leaving her to drown but has a change of heart. He jumps in after her and pulls her from the chemicals. Her transformation is complete. The scene was done in a very artistic way. I loved the addition to Harley's origin. I always felt her simply falling in love with the Joker and joining him was a bit weak. Her descent into madness in this film was very satisfying.
Oddly enough, Suicide Squad give us our first good look at Ezra Miller as The Flash. Let's face it; the dream sequence in Dawn of Justice didn't give us a great look at the costume. It was a pleasant surprise to see Ezra Miller make a cameo in this film and see the suit in all of its glory. He looked great.
There is a hilarious revelation by the end of the movie. Our group of misfits save the city and the world with less collateral damage than Superman in Man of Steel.
Katana's authenticity and her culture was kept in tact, something I greatly appreciate and respect. Throughout the movie, she speaks in Japanese and only utters one line in English.
The Flash isn't the only member of the Justice League to appear in this film. Ben Affleck returns as The Batman. What's interesting is that we see The Bat from the villains perspective, something that hasn't been done onscreen before.
See the movie and judge it for yourself when it is released nationwide on August 5, 2016. The Confessions of a Cosplay Girl Blog gives Suicide Squad two thumbs up.
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