by Nolan James – Staff Reporter
Suicide Squad was arguably, this year’s summer blockbuster, but ultimately proved very disappointing. I went in having little to no expectations for this movie, and it still proved to be a huge disappointment, as have the other recent DC movies. They just cannot match Marvel’s ability to make a good cinematic universe, and that’s coming from a DC fan.
After the amazing Dark Knight trilogy, which ended on a rather poor note, DC followed up their cinematic magnum opus with Zack Snyder’s Man of Steel, a pretty bad reboot of the long-running Superman series. Ultimately, Man of Steel received mostly negative reception, but due to a large world-wide gross and an overly dedicated fan base, Warner Bros. kept Snyder on for their next project, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which was more unanimously hated than Man of Steel.
This summer, the third film in the series, Suicide Squad, was released, and it’s honestly the worst one. The movie revolves around a group of criminals who are released from prison by a woman, Amanda Waller, temporarily, to help fight against a powerful entity, The Enchantress, under threat of death.
The main characters who make up the team include: Deadshot, played by Will Smith, Harley Quinn, played by Margot Robbie, Diablo, played by Jay Hernandez, Capt. Boomerang, played by Jai Courtney, Katana, played by Karen Fukuhara, Killer Croc, played by Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje, and Slipknot, played by Adam Beach. Will Smith did a decent job, as did Margot Robbie, but the rest of the performances fell flat.
It’s hilarious that all of the characters got a proper introduction via flashback explaining how and why they were arrested, except for Slipknot, who was introduced in a weak line of dialogue. When he died, it was no surprise. He wasn’t a very big character in the comics, though, so it doesn’t matter than much that they killed him.
Will Smith as Deadshot was better than expected, but Jared Leto’s performance as The Joker definitely overshadowed Smith’s decent performance with how horrible he was. Some people actually like Jared Leto’s Joker, but it’s ridiculous that people think interpretation could at all be compared to earlier ones.
One of the worst parts of Leto was his laugh. It just didn’t sound right. Mark Hamill, in my opinion, portrayed The Joker better than anyone else, especially when it came to his laugh. For those of you who have seen Batman: The Animated Series or Batman: Mask of the Phantasm, you know what I’m talking about when I say that Hamill’s laugh was amazing. When it comes to character portrayals, the laugh doesn’t usually matter that much, but it’s The Joker; his laugh is his defining characteristic. Leto just doesn’t compare to past interpretations of the character.
Heath Ledger may not have been the most comic book accurate portrayal, but he was creepy, and portrayed a character that actually struck fear into its audience. Heath Ledger was the highlight of The Dark Knight. Think about his design, his personality, compared to Leto’s, with Leto’s overly bright green hair, edgy tattoos, and metallic teeth.
There was not much with this movie that was done right. It looks like it was thrown together to make a quick buck, relying solely on the characters they messed up and the classic rock soundtrack they barely used.
Suicide Squad opted for lame CGI-filled action rather than the attempt at good cinematography from its predecessors. No interesting camera angles, poor lighting, it really didn’t do much.
Another example would be the story. Snyder tried to come up with a complex story for BvS, which was filled with holes and poor pacing, but you could see the effort. Suicide Squad has such a basic, rushed story, where you couldn’t get invested in the characters.
The dialogue of Suicide Squad was poorly written and awkward. For example, early on, it is revealed that Flagg was in a relationship with the woman that The Enchantress was possessing, which the main characters find out about, and decide to quit, as they feel betrayed. Everything about this scene is extremely awkward, from the characters’ motivations to the dialogue, there’s not one good part in this scene. Director David Ayer does not know how to write a good story.
This movie had potential. Unfortunately, DC’s cinematic universe is so much worse than Marvel’s, and there’s many reasons why. For one, this universe is obviously just DC’s response to Marvel’s success, and lacks any originality.
DC is also stuck on being dark and mature. With the creation of The Dark Knight Returns and Watchmen in 1986, which received critical acclaim for DC for being dark and gritty, and the beloved Dark Knight trilogy, DC has been doing the same basic story for the past three decades.
Zack Snyder also directed the movie adaptation of Watchmen, which gained mostly positive reception, and since then he has been replicating the same dark formula that he used in Watchmen and was used in The Dark Knight, using it in Man of Steel and BvS.
Ayer obviously tried to replicate Snyder’s formula for a mature, gritty, adult story, though, but added his own twist: instead of trying to develop his characters and have an interesting, complex plot, he’d make a quick buck basing it off of his other basic action movies like Fury and The Fast and the Furious, and lacked any originality. He just took the most basic of stories and put DC’s characters in it, and it ultimately failed.