Suicide Squad ★½

It is bold for DC and Warner Bros. to adapt the concept of Suicide Squad to the screen, one that deviates from the general set of heroes and bring forth a team that would contrast the more virtuous nature of the upcoming Justice League.

It is only unfortunate that David Ayer, a Hollywood filmmaker who has in recent years has shown some promise, has lost a grip on his material, attempting to realise something so promising while ensuring the compression of the material's entirety into a singular film.

This was already a slight problematic factor for others in the DCEU's previous film, Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, but thankfully I was able to forgive the film for such as it constantly developed its characters, thus maintaining my engagement throughout. In Suicide Squad, the film appears in desperate haste to establish its characters and immediately push them into action. It is a mode of storytelling that fails to justify their depth and motivations, and hence unable to earn our attentions.

The film doesn't even seem to seek our desire to observe further than what is given on the surface, almost as if afraid to admit that there is actually little lingering underneath. The film does manage to find some heart, notably in the tapping of Deadshot's (Will Smith) and Diablo's (Jay Hernandez) emotional backstories, revealing a side of their past that would justify their presence and motivations. Others however were far less convincing or stimulating, with Margit Robbie's Harley Quinn given a generous spread of screen time and backstory, yet achieving little aside from the fact that she has a slight sense of vulnerability, making matters worse is her pairing with The Joker (Jared Leto), which I find to be a spectacular bore, a caricature that screams for his presence to be felt, but from a storytelling and performance standpoint, actually achieving nothing, leaving with little incentive that would spark our desire to see him in the next films. Viola Davis may prove herself with some worth through a cunning performance as Amanda Waller, a task force head that pulls the strings more aggressively than any of her cinematic peers could deliver, one that may prove fascinating in subsequent films if given the opportunity to further shine. As for the rest, one would probably only remember them if looking through the IMDb cast list.

The film's trailers promise a fun sense of banter and chaos that it becomes even more disappointing that the film misses the mark almost completely, one that would leave Deadshot feeling embarrased for being part of it. It is obvious that if Ayer was given greater space in pursuing and deconstructing these characters, then this would have been an outstanding entry for the studio and maybe for his filmography. It is completely understandable if you come out of this film with a sigh rather than a fist pump and a dash of "fuck yeah" that the film desires for you.

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