“SUICIDE SQUAD” Garbage Pail Kids for grown-ups

Release Date: August 5th, 2016

Running Time: 2 hours 10 minutes

Rating PG-13

Grade: B+

Directed by David Ayer

Knights in shining armor are brave souls that abandon their own safety to help others. They are courageous do-gooders that refuse to leave until the job is done. The Suicide Squad are not those guys. They don’t even like those guys. In a world that is still mourning the loss of Superman, the military is clamoring to answer the question: “Who will save us now?” Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), a high level agent, has the answer to that question.  She has brought together the worst of the worst criminals to be called upon, used and disposed of to protect the peace. Her perfect plan isn’t foolproof though, it turns out there is a cost for gambling with people’s lives.

Director/Writer David Ayer (Fury/End of Watch) has netted a great cast for this film. Will Smith(Men in Black/Focus) is the” never-miss-never-die” hit man Deadshot. He has perfect aim but seems to miss the mark when it comes to being there for his eleven year old daughter SUICIDE SQUADZoe played by Shailyn Pierre-Dixon (Between Tv Series/ Jean of the Joneses). Margot Robbie (The Wolf of Wall Street/Focus) is the smiling Harley Quin a sociopath with a heart of gold. Her one weakness and strength is in her uncanny love for the Joker played by Jared Leto (Panic Room/Lord of War). Captain Boomerang, a boomerang specialist and thief, is fleshed out by Jai Courtney (Terminator Genisys/Insurgent.) Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje (Thor: Dark World/The Mummy Returns) takes a bite out of his role as Killer Croc a reptilian like criminal. Jay Hernandez (Bad Moms/Gang Related Tv series) transformed into his role as Diablo, an ex gang member that can control the power of flame. Karen Fukuhara slices her way onto the screen in her debut role as Katana, a cold blooded killer that uses a blade that traps human souls. Adam Beach (Cowboys and Aliens/Windtalkers) is the untamed Slipknot, an assassin skilled in using ropes as weapons. Cara Delevingne (The Face of an Angel/ Kids in Love) plays wicked and powerful Enchantress an ancient witch that has taken possession of a young archeologists’ body. Joel Kinnaman (The Killing TV series/RoboCop) is Rick Flag, a special forces operative and the designated driver for the squad’s descent into madness. With so many characters to choose from, it’s really a dealer’s choice.

There were a few questions I had before watching the film. Can Jared Leto pull off his role as the Joker? Did Margot Robbie bring out the quirkiness of Harley Quin? Also was the movie going to be a move forward for more D.C. movies? The short answer is yes! With the long history of cinematic Jokers to use for comparison I can say Jared Leto cuts out his own version of the Joker. This 13731260_962496863863075_484322431_nnew incarnation of the clown faced criminal is similar to the performances of Cesar Romero, Jack Nicholson, and Heath Ledger. Each representation of the Joker has been a mirror of different time periods reflected in the comic books ranging from the past to present. This new modern Joker is edgy, bizarre, shrewd and highly unpredictable. In this way he is like the “Batman: The Animated Series” Joker with a lot of modern influences on his appearance. I wouldn’t say it is fair to compare him to Heath Ledger’s Joker. Heath Ledger not only gave an awesome performance but he also left huge shoes to fill in his sudden passing. Jared Leto’s Joker isn’t classically focused on Batman this time, instead he is determined to rescue his beloved “pudding.” In the movie we are presented with the Joker’s raw dementia influencing Dr. Harlene Quinzel. He wears her down till she mentally unravels, leaving her completely vulnerable to his ripe insanity. I bring this up because it provides a reason for why she is so disturbed. Seeing this depiction of Harley Quin is spot on with her attitude in the comics and animated series. The other characters are given an explanation as well. This helps to convey their state of mind as villains and their decision to fight instead of run. That makes this really a movie about broken people that are given a choice to keep being broken or to try to make a change of their own free will. They don’t want to fight for justice or jurisdiction. They want love, freedom and happiness on their own terms. If this involves the slaying of people in their way, then they are ok with that.

SUICIDE SQUADSuicide Squad is a poker game with high stakes, few bluffs and the Joker running wild. Its easily a show that had me “all-in”  from the start. Anything comic book related gets my attention so I naturally like this film. I appreciated how David Ayer used the soundtrack to familiarize the audience with the characters in the shortest amount of time possible. Which is, by the way, a huge undertaking to blend in so many of these personalities with their own personal histories along with a brand new Joker and Harley Quin too. It was good to have the background stories upfront and thorough. This way the characters weren’t forgettable. Because of how that was executed I came to like all of the members of Suicide Squad. The Enchantress was the true wild card to me and so was Diablo. Amanda Waller was one dangerous person, that is the bottom line. The Killer Croc design wasn’t cheesy, the creative team out did themselves. Captain Boomerang (or just Boomerang) was funny. You can tell he’s just a funny criminal, the stuff unicorn that he carries around with him was a big clue to that. Diablo really had a sad story and it changed him on the inside despite how he appeared to everyone else on the outside. When Katana was by herself lamenting the loss of her husband it stood out as a somber moment. Rick Flag’s connection to June Moore, host body for the Enchantress, was touching. I especially liked the cool cameos that were brief but sweet. I was surprised to see the Rapper Common making a cameo in the film too. I would of liked to see more of Slipknot’s character but there was a reason for that being cut short. I believe this movie was set up to bring us to a conclusive need for the Justice League. As if to show there is a logical progression to address and fill the gap for a missing Superman in a hurting world.

I gave this movie a justifiable B+ this is of course assuming that Marvel’s Captain America Civil War is an absolute A. Detective Comics or D.C. had a rocky start creating their cinematic universe but I think they are on the right track now. Marvel has so many movies out already and those motion pictures are dedicated to specific heroes. D.C. has been working on their mainstays Batman and Superman, so now they are playing catch up. What they have created here in the Suicide Squad is their own type of Guardians of the Galaxy. By saying that I mean they’ve brought some interesting faces to the limelight with an iconic soundtrack. I think after watching Suicide Squad you may feel like rooting for the bad guys and I am here to tell you it’s ok if you do.

For more information please visit: suicidesquad.com

“In a world of monsters, this is the only way to protect the country.” ~ Amanda Waller

As the world mourns the loss of Superman, Amanda Waller (a high ranking government official) requests permission to assemble the world’s deadliest task force in order to be prepared for any threat. After an impressive demonstration of Dr. June Moone’s possession by an evil spirit known as the Enchantress, the panel agrees to move forward with Task Force X. The recruits include Deadshot (an assassin who never misses), El Diablo (a former gangster who can generate and manipulate fire), Boomerang (an Australian thief), Killer Croc (a cannibal with a rare skin condition), and Harley Quinn (the deranged love of The Joker).

Waller offers the supervillains a reduced sentence for their cooperation but places nanobombs in their necks as an insurance policy. She then places the squad under the command of Rick Flag who is in love with June Moone. Meanwhile, The Joker is on a diabolical mission to liberate the woman that he loves from the Suicide Squad. When the Enchantress learns how to escape Waller’s control, she takes over Midway city and harnesses her power to build a machine with the goal of destroying the world. The time has come to dispatch the Suicide Squad!

“Are you sweet talkin’ me? All’a that chitchat’s gonna getcha hurt….” ~ The Joker

Director David Yates (Fury) with Executive Producer Zach Snyder (Man of Steel and Batman V Superman) introduce us to a group of supervillains in Suicide Squad, the third installment in the DC Comics Extended Universe.  Despite not being a comic book aficionado, I have looked forward to screening this film all summer.  Warner Brothers Pictures latest release met my expectations.  I thought that Yates did a superb job laying the foundation with an ensemble cast featuring Academy Award winners Jared Leto and Viola Davis, among others.

The trailer sparked my interest months ago with its lively soundtrack and offbeat vibe.  I was especially looking forward to the performances by Jared Leto (Dallas Buyers Club) as The Joker and Margot Robbie (Legend of Tarzan, About Time and The Big Short) as Harley Quinn.  They did not disappoint.  They were both brilliant in their roles and showed us a glimpse of the crazy love between the two. Although I enjoyed the entire cast, the film also left me wanting to see a film about Harley and The Joker.

Known for gritty dramas, Russian cinematographer Roman Vasyanov’s camera work on the avant-garde film was first-rate.  Yates did a fantastic job developing the characters and creating a backstory for those of us not familiar with the comics.  Once he sets the stage, the “Worse Heroes Ever” are temporarily released from Belle Rive Penitentiary and sent on a black ops mission in exchange for time off their sentences.


The quick cameos of Batman and references to Superman helped ground the film. Suicide Squad is a refreshing film that awakens the crazy in all of us.  I personally was pleased with the mix of comedic timing, action and darkness that Yates brought to the film. ~A.S. MacLeod

This is the deal. You’re going somewhere very bad to do something that will get you killed.

Whoa! What a ride! David Ayer’s Suicide Squad is a stellar third edition to the DC Cinematic Universe. I absolutely loved Viola Davis as the mastermind behind the idea of using criminals to save the world. The rest of the cast also brought their A-game to the project with Will Smith, Margot Robbie, and (of course) Jared Leto standing out of the line of fire. In fact, my only complaint is that there is so much happening with the story that they don’t have as much screen time as I would’ve liked. I thoroughly enjoyed Robbie’s version of Harley Quinn equally as much as Academy Award winning Leto’s performance as the iconic Joker and would seriously love another film starring the two of them. The inclusion of Batman, his role in incarcerating most of the bad guys, and their view of him was also much appreciated. The action scenes, which were plentiful, were greatly enhanced by Roman Vasyanov’s superb cinematography that included amazing flashbacks and controlled sequences. Wrapping up the amazing movie going experience, the soundtrack composed by Academy Award winning Steven Price is infused into key aspects of the film. Escape reality and run into the theater to capture this one! Hahahahahahahahahaha! ~Movie Buffette

About Perry Boyd