“ Oh, I’m not gonna kill you… I’m just gonna hurt you really, really bad.”
That’s what I heard Warner Brothers saying in my head as I watched “Batman V. Superman” this past March. With that behind us, everyone was looking at mid August as the next great hope for the DC film Universe with the release of “Suicide Squad.” With the release of epic-sized trailer after trailer that promised that DC and WB were finally getting it right, maybe not cracking the Marvel code, but close enough. What seems like so long ago, as the buzz surrounding this film seemed to be leading to a win for the bad guys, now as it’s about to be released is not feeling so warm and fuzzy anymore.
“Suicide Squad” is a story that says bad guys don’t always have to wear black, as some get to wear bright colored spandex and carry a baseball bat. With the death of Superman, the world has been left with a void of someone who can stop the next city from being destroyed by the forces of evil. In comes Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), a high up in the government who thinks putting a team of villains together to fight the good fight is a good idea. Sure she is not going to open the prison and give them a free pass, instead with the right leader in Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) and the right form of control, anything is possible. After the decision is made it’s time to meet the team which includes Deadshot (Will Smith), who like his name suggests doesn’t miss a shot. Unlike Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) who is missing quite a bit of screws in her head, as she gives “crazy” a new poster child. Quinn wasn’t always this way, but falling in love with The Joker (Jared Leto) will do that to you. The rest of the team consist of Boomerang (Jai Courtney), Diablo (Jay Hernandez), Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) and June Moone/Enchantress (Cara Delevingne) rounding out the not so super nice guys. It doesn’t take long for the team to be activated, the only question left is, are they bad enough to save the world?
With comic book movies following the simple plan of good guys fight bad guys, good guys win, you could see the appeal of “Suicide Squad.” The whole idea of a team of bad guys, but fighting for good is a whole different can of worms than we are used to. With the idea in place and a killer cast, all you needed was the right director, something they got in David Ayer (End of Watch). With Ayer’s pedigree of street and war action/dramas, who would be better in leading a gritty super hero movie? Well it turns out he might not have been the right man, as what had the possibility of grit turned into more of a mess, as the story never really gets going. If the rocky first half wasn’t bad enough, the second half of the movie starts to question who our heroes are fighting, as the “end of the world” looks like all it is missing is a visit from a 100 ft. marshmallow man, with it’s similarities to the O.G. “Ghostbusters.” Almost as confusing as the final act, is the choice of villain, who feels a little unimpressive.
I wanted to be in on this, as this felt like the year for “R” rated comic book movies to rule that world. Instead of ruling, the only thing this film does is testing your patience and make you wonder what they are doing over there at Warner Bros. The only thing that saves this movie is the performances, especially those of Leto, Smith, and Robbie, the later one hundred percent killing it on the screen. This could have been a beautiful thing, that as with “Batman v. Superman” reeks of studio interference. These people just don’t know what the viewers want. They have a genuine fan base that they think very little of when they churn out something that will appeal to almost no one who has ever seen a good superhero movie.