Review: Suicide Squad celebrates the good side of being bad
In a world rocked by the super threats highlighted by the destructive antics of ‘metahumans’ from Man of Steel and Batman v Superman, the government decides to bring together a back up plan to handle the next attack.
Meet Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), the cold-hearted agent who creates ‘Task Force X’ by assembling a super team made up of metahuman villains forced to fight for us, not against us.
And thus the ‘suicide squad’ is born, comprising some of DC Comics’ most famous bad guys: crack assassin Deadshot (Will Smith), femme fatale Harly Quinn (Margot Robbie), dangerous ‘Captain’ Boomerang (Jai Courtney), flesh-eating Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje), fire-manipulating El Diablo (Jay Hernandez), messed-up Slipnot (Adam Beach), powerful sorceress Enchantress (Cara Delevingne) and expert martial artist Katana (Karen Fukuhara).
Can these ‘worst heroes ever’ actually work with special forces marines led by Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) for reduced jail terms or death-via-mini-bomb-in-their-necks if they disobey or try to escape? It’s a blast finding out.
Director David ‘End of Watch’ Ayer brings Suicide Squad to the screen as a sequel and worthy companion to Batman v Superman. Batman (Ben Affleck) gets some cool short action scenes and there is a fun cameo from another member of the soon to be formed Justice League. Suicide Squad works well as a stand alone adventure but also helps build the DC Cinematic Universe in fine style.
This ‘Skwad’ of expendable baddies tear up the screen in an action packed romp which manages to be both dark and funny, and whilst these characters are the ones you’ll be rooting for, you’re not allowed to forget that they are nasty and each have heinous crimes to their names. Pick of the bunch are the perfectly cast Deadshot – Will Smith really delivers a top performance, and Harley Quinn - Margot Robbie - might have to wear the most sexist outfit ever but she’s hypnotic and will steal many hearts with her cracked humour as much as her shapely form.
Also mixed up in the action is Harley’s ‘Puddin’ - The Joker (Jared Leto trying his best to follow in the huge shoes of Heather Ledger) and succeeding creating a wicked new take on the Clown Prince of Crime.
Pick apart the pacing of the plot and knock the ‘darker than Marvel’ tone all you want but Suicide Squad is a comic book fan’s dream writ large and I left the cinema grinning – both at what I’d just witnessed (stay for the end credits extra scene), and in anticipation of more to come.