Friday, August 5, 2016

Movie Review -- Suicide Squad

Today we have the latest comic book movie, Suicide Squad. Is it worth your time? Let's find out.

The story takes place after Batman VS Superman: Dawn of Justice. In Superman's absence, ARGUS head Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) feels the world needs a new protector. But she doesn't want a superhero per se; she wants villains to act as heroes. With that thought driving her, she creates Task Force X which consists of criminals such as Dead Shot (Will Smith), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney) and Diablo (Jay Hernandez), among others. Their mission: risk their lives for the greater good in exchange for commuted sentences.

As it turns out, they are soon needed. A pair of ancient gods is released and proceed to take over a US city. But they're not satisfied with that, oh no. They want the world. So they begin building a mysterious weapon of immense power. Facing this imminent threat, Waller decides to send in Task Force X, AKA the Suicide Squad, along with a contingent of soldiers. However, she neglects to tell them what they're up against, and they go in relatively blind. Their chopper gets shot down and they have to hoof it across the city on foot.

So this disparate group of criminals and soldiers must figure out what they're fighting, but it's going to be difficult when they can't even trust one another. Can these unlikely heroes and armed service members get on the same page and save the world? And what will they do when the Joker (Jared Leto) comes knocking (or firing a chain gun)?

This movie was directed by David Ayer. He also did the abysmal Schwarzenegger movie Sabotage. Thankfully, Suicide Squad is wayyyy better than that. Whereas Sabotage was a vulgar mess of a film, this one doesn't rely on shock value to hook viewers. Here Ayer has managed to stay true to the spirit of the comics while taking risks that pay off. I like the way he took the Joker in a more psychotic direction than even Heath Ledger did in The Dark Knight, resulting in a supremely dark, disturbing character. I'm also glad we finally get a big-screen version of Harley Quinn, one of my favorite comic book characters. This has been a long time coming.

I would also like to mention the kickass soundtrack. Like a musical machine gun, this movie fires hit after hit at you, featuring everyone from Queen to Eminem, and it just makes it all so much more fun to listen to.

Tight action, larger than life characters and tie-ins to the forthcoming Justice League movie round out a worthwhile Summer blockbuster. Go see Suicide Squad.

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