Movie Review: The Suicide Squad

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Parth Mishra

Our band of heroes (Or, supervillains) head out to save the day yet again. Or are they?…

Parth Mishra, Radio/Podcasting EIC

Disclaimer: This movie is rated R and not recommended for people under the age 18 without parental consent due to strong violence and gore, language throughout, some sexual references, drug use, and brief graphic nudity.

Overview

Supervillains and crooks across the globe have joined together for yet another escapade in The Suicide Squad. They go on a top-secret government mission to Corto Maltese, with infamous figures such as Harley Quinn, Savant, Blackguard, and even The Weasel aboard the plane. However, our moody protagonists might not be the ones to save the day…

There’s much to unpack about The Suicide Squad, but before the movie even starts, viewers must expect frequent gore and violence. Anyone can infer that supervillains aren’t fond of mercy and chivalry.

Pros

Many elements of what made the first movie a favorite are retained in The Suicide Squad. Critics gave the first Suicide Squad few compliments, mainly Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, a band of supervillains going on a top-secret mission, and engaging backstories. The standalone sequel contains all of that and more.

The 2016 installation established its own variety of edgy humor laced with dark undertones, so it was an obvious choice for directors to include more of it in the sequel. However, unlike its predecessor, The Suicide Squad truly succeeds in the “edgy teen humor” formula, neither overdoing it nor holding back the necessary snark.

The plot is where this movie truly shines. Displayed in all its brutal glory is the fight between upholding false peace and pursuing revolutionary advancements, a battle that is usually glossed over by American propaganda. This struggle changes our lovable troublemakers, forcing them to grow as a person and seek guidance from their comrades-in-arms. Characters learn to deal with their own inner demon and must choose a side with their newfound strength. 

Cons

While all of these points might make the movie seem to be flawless masterpiece, there are some distinct flaws to point out as well.

An alien’s appearance ruins the flow of the plot of the movie. The aliens simply trying to act on their instincts were turned into villains to be destroyed. The villain is weakly developed, through dark comedy and vague ideologies. 

Here comes the lady of the hour herself, ready to sell the show without breaking a sweat. (Parth Mishra)

Our villainous protagonists seem to also be less intense, with their devilishness taken away. In turn, the special feeling of seeing supervillains in action goes dull, as they are turned into anti-heroes rather than sadistic outlaws.

While the animation and the videography might be lackluster at times, every scene features professional, top-tier acting. The shot of a space station, infested with starfish, brainwashing Americans, is given an edge with impeccable acting and motion capture.

A huge miss however, is that multiple characters who had potential to continue the Suicide Squad series seem to have finished their stories in this movie. With no plot holes to cover in succeeding installations, some character’s stories seemed to have been wrapped up. However, it could be that Harley Quinn’s seemingly secondary role in the movie  opens up possibilities of the harlequin getting a legitimately acceptable movie (after the disappointing Birds of Prey…). 

Verdict

Audiences have long hailed the members of the Suicide Squad as a refreshing take on some of the greatest and most complex supervillains to exist, but DC’s execution on this film is frankly disappointing. The Suicide Squad is a wonderful movie with its own unique achievements, but it fails to bring out the potential that our beloved gang of freaks and crooks hold.