Nothing says “summertime at the movies” like massive action set-pieces, bold and eccentric comic book characters, and larger than life adventures. “The Suicide Squad” from James Gunn is a voyage that will provide all of that and more as a group of villains are sent in to battle a massive…starfish. It’s as dumb as it sounds yet, the result was a joyful blend of dark crude humor, charming character moments, gory violence, and endless amounts of eye-popping visuals. More importantly, it brought something that has been missing recently from these large comic book movies, a surprising amount of unpredictability.
It was hard to guess where this story would go. Which characters would actually make it to the end alive. And the credit must go to Gunn for creating a delightfully violent and gracefully edgy world of his own inside of this movie. There are some returning characters from the first “Suicide Squad” headlined by Robbie’s Harley Quinn, who I loved in this movie. She’s absolutely insane in the hands of James Gunn and it was a treat. Kinnaman returns as Flag and this time he’s able to give the character some heart without having to dispense constant exposition like he was relegated to in his last outing. Davis here is pure evil and dead behind the eyes once again. She needs to make Waller a true villain in a film filled with them, and she succeeds once again.
The bulk of the characters are all fresh faces and the variety in their personalities, their powers, and the performances from the cast were a treat as well. Cena was humorous and feels every bit the part of Peacemaker. David Dastmalcian at times steals the show as Polka-Dot Man and Stallone’s voiceover work helps make King Shark DC’s answer to Marvel’s Groot. With Idris Elba as Bloodsport being as capable as you would expect to subtly anchor the cast.
The blend of attitude and charisma was a treat, and it made the quieter character moments between all the large action just as fun as all the chaos. Primarily because of the sense-of-humor in the writing. The jokes are frequent and delivered with a variety that keeps the comedic element of this movie front and center. From visual cues, to one-liners, to amusing situations, and character responses, to the rapport of the group. This one has no shortage of laughable moments.
There really isn’t anything special about the plot. The structure is honestly one we’ve seen many times in this genre before. But Gunn injects nearly every layer with his creative ambition. Like a massive starfish for example. Something that on paper you would never think could work. But Gunn pulls it off. It’s as comical and enjoyable as it is absurd and over-the-top. Yet there’s an appeal, a freshness and plenty of unpredictability to it that will have you enjoying every second of the ride this movie takes you on. The run-time moves quickly because of the frequent action, the wild characters, the humor, and vibrant visuals. It pulls you in and for two-hours you’re in the ambitious mind of James Gunn and I highly recommend it.
Anthony J Digioia II - SilverScreen Analysis © All Rights Reserved