Suicide Squad (Review)

suicide-squad-Harley and Deadshot

At Least the Team is Good

Can a director write a script in six weeks and make a really good blockbuster? Suicide Squad tries to answer that question and it is resounding no! Warner Bros. signed David Ayer, director of Fury and End of the Watch, in September 2014 to write and direct the Suicide Squad. Warner Bros. had the film scheduled to start filming in April of 2015 and to be released in August of 2016. David Ayer had 7 months before filming. He had to research the characters, write a decent script, cast the team (which most of the team December of 2015), and start pre-production in 7 months. Steven Spielberg, John Ford, or any other famous Hollywood Director could have completed this task Warner Bros. and again the studio failed to supersede Marvel’s success.  Suicide Squad turned out to be a mess but is saving grace are the characters and the chemistry that the actors display and really helps bond the characters together.

Superman is dead! The world doesn’t have anybody to protect it. Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) believes that she can coerce a group of supervillains to fight for her and protect the world against other metahumans who want to destroy it.  She manipulates Rick Flagg (Joel Kinnamann) to fall in love with June Moon (Cara Delevinge) to keep her alter-ego, Enchantress, at bay. Enchantress quickly turns on Flagg and Waller. Waller seeking a way to stop Enchantress recruits the supervillains known as:  Deadshot (Will Smith), Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), El Diablo (Jay Hernandez), Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney),  and Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) to fight for her.  The supervillains must work together and prevent Enchantress from destroying the world.

Suicide Squad is a clock with a lot of broken parts but casting, visuals, and action is the parts that work. Visually has a dark setting but the lightening allows humor to be infused within the movie. The action is spectacular. Deadshot can take out an army of baddies by himself by him being so accurate. Harley beats people up with her bat and looks sexy while doing. Captain Boomerang has different kind of boomerangs that help him.  El Diablo and Killer Croc are the muscle with superhuman powers or strength that can rip enemies to shreds or burn them to a crisp. The action sequences are very entertaining because the team works together and each add humor some situations.

Will Smith nails Deadshot. Smith delivers a tormented heart felt performance  and is really the leader of the Suicide Squad. Margot Robbie is fantastic as Harley Quinn. She embodies all of the characteristics of the Harley. Jai Courtney is very entertaining as Captain Boomerang. Boomerang is such a ego maniac, snarky with every character, but also a badass. He really can kick ass in the film.  Jay Hernandez really portrays a tormented Diablo. The audience can tell that Diablo is super powerful but holds back and the movie explains that reasoning quite well. Adewale is really good Killer Croc. He has a physical presence on screen that makes his character very formable.  However, the real star is Viola Davis as Amanda Waller.  Joel Kinnamann is great as Rick Flag but the leader and villain of this movie is Amanda Waller. Davis portrays Waller as ruthless, non-empathetic, and might be a bigger sociopath than the Joker. She will kill anybody to keep a secret.  Suicide Squad has major issues.

The Suicide Squad, despite the character performances, really is unevenly paced with pointless plot.  The pacing is uneven because the movie starts with a bang with the introduction of the team in the prison complex with different musical songs introducing them then switches to Amanda Waller with her song being Sympathy of the Devil.  The song selections were perfect introductions to the characters and their personalities. Waller is the devil so her song is perfect for her. The film switches to Amanda Waller narrating why we need a team metahumans because Superman is dead. Characters actually narrate about other characters during these flashbacks.  The audience spends about twenty minutes getting introduced to these characters and we don’t get to see Waller recruit the team and see their abilities until about 30 minutes in the movie.  The film switches to the Enchantress villain and it keeps switching. The Joker even has a subplot in the film about finding Harley Quinn.  The Joker is another big problem.

The Joker doesn’t belong in the movie. He is a distraction in the storyline, and Jared Leto’s acting is a major distraction.  His Joker is a mixed bag.  His Joker and Harley have a very co-dependent relationship which is nailed perfectly but on the other hand, his mannerisms as the Joker are not creepy and rather predictable. His best scene by himself might be in the night club flashback using Harley as a distraction to kill one of his henchman. However, he is not really memorable because the Harley flashbacks and his storyline take away from the enjoyment of seeing the Suicide Squad as a team together. I walked to the bathroom during a Harley and Joker flashback because the scene was so disinteresting.

Suicide Squad is a bad movie. Everybody is to blame besides the main actors not including Jared Leto as the Joker. The action sequences are good but not memorable. This DC movie has humor in which is a positive. Will Smith, Margo Robbie, and Viola Davis really help make this film entertaining enough to watch.  Warner Bros. Studios does deserve the blame because they expedited the developmental process to complete with Marvel and their marketing department put a emphasis on the Joker. He is in the movie for like 10 to 20 minutes and seriously takes away from the screen time of the team in the film. David Ayer also deserves some blame for adding the Joker in the movie.  However, Suicide Squad deserves a sequel where Deadshot, Harley, and the whole team deserve to come back and face a worthy villain that is entertaining. Suicide Squad gets 2.5 out 5.

 

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Arrow (City of Blood) Spoilers

 

City of BloodThis dude is back!

I apologize that my Arrow reviews haven’t been coming lately.  My mother would rather watch the Washington Nationals with baseball season back on then Arrow. However, I’m back to do a recap.  Ok, the last two Arrow episodes have been pivotal. Recap 19, Ollie found out where Slade was building his army. Slade was using Roy’s blood because Ollie destroyed a facility producing serum  . Dingle kills Isabel and they rescue Roy. Slade revives Isabel by using his blood. In episode 20; Moria is going to quit the mayoral race for Thea but changes her mind. She tells Ollie that for awhile she has known about his nighty activities. Sara leaves the city after most killing Roy. Roy wakes up and goes on a rampage.  Ollie stops him. Oliver, Thea, and Moria get captured by Slade. Slade kills Moria as she sacrifices herself for her children. Oliver is depressed.

In this episode, Oliver becomes a loner again. He blames himself for his mother’s death and everybody else in his life. Felicity and Dingle go to ARGUS and ask  Amanda Waller for help. She gives it to them after she realizes that Slade Wilson is alive. The kicker of this episode is Laurel. Oliver is about to willingly turn himself over to Slade. Both the meeting, Ollie gets shot with a dart and passes out. Laurel appears in the Arrow Lair telling him that she knows about him being the Arrow.  Laural stops him by telling him that Sebastian Blood is working with Slade. Oliver has a sit down with Blood who makes his motivates clear to be a Kingpin ruling Starling City. Felicity and Dingle interrogate Blood’s body guard to find out the location of the army.   Thea is going to leave Starling City but it fails because Slade’s army takes over every strategic building in Starling City. Oliver and Laurel get trapped beneath the rumble of the streets after their plan to bury the Army succeeds. They don’t realize Slade has hundreds at his command.

My overall opinion on this episode is it’s a set up episode for the last two episodes. Arrow is a cleverly written show and one of the best on TV. I loved a many things in this episode: Laurel is becoming a stronger character, the island flashbacks, Oliver is in depression, Walter Steele returns for the funeral, Thea wants to leave, Isabel’s kicking the Queen’s where it hurts by taking their personal possessions, Brother Blood wants to be a Kingpin of Starling City,  Felicity and Dingle asking for help from Amanda Waller, and the last 15 minutes when Slade, Blood, and Isabel take over the city with an army of Deathstrokes.  My only negatives is that Roy is still sleeping in a coma and there were no references to the Suicide Squad helping. Overall this episode is a set up episode and the first 15 minutes was slow. Felicity, Dingle, and Laurel became stronger characters. I rate this episode 4.5/5. It’s rather entertaining and the last two episodes are going to be on the edge of your seat material.

I will have a Spider-Man 2 review for you tomorrow with minor spoilers.

Arrow Review (Suicide Squad) Spoilers

Suicide Squad (left to right) Bronze Tiger, Sharpel, Amanda Waller, Deadshot, Lyla Michaels, and John Dingle.

Suicide Squad (left to right)
Bronze Tiger, Sharpel, Amanda Waller, Deadshot, Lyla Michaels, and John Dingle.

Years prior in Afghanistan, Diggle and Lyla are leading a group of Afghan villagers when one identifies a wanted man, Gholem Qadir, among the group. During an ambush, Diggle saves Qadir’s life. In the present, Diggle and Lyla are called upon by Amanda Waller to lead her “Task Force X”, also known as the “Suicide Squad“, which consists of Deadshot, Bronze Tiger, and Shrapnel. Waller has several other cells that have occupants in it.  The Squad is sent after Qadir, who was released from prison and has developed a deadly nerve agent. Waller wants to use Diggle’s past relationship with Qadir to get close to him and steal the weapon. After saving Qadir’s life again, through a faked assassination attempt, Diggle is invited to Qadir’s home for a party. Once there, Deadshot locates the nerve agent and is expected to be used as a targeting reference for a drone strike on the house. Diggle decides to save Deadshot; as a result, the drone misses the house coming after Suicide Squad. Waller sends a seal team to destroy the nerve agent. Meanwhile, Oliver continues to try and deal with the threat of Slade Wilson. Oliver is forced to go to Amanda Waller for help, revealing he has interacted with her before. At first not believing that Slade is alive, Waller tells him that A.R.G.U.S. has been tracking a new mercenary is named “Deathstroke.”

The episode only has a few positives.  The first positive is the interact between John Dingle and Deadshot. The pair have a heated history on the show, however, the verbal sparring between Dingle and Deadshot was awesome. Dingle reveals that he knows about Deadshot’s daughter. The conversations between Deadshot and Dingle focus on Deadshot’s attempt of redemption.  Another positive was Amanda Waller played by Cynthia Addai-Robinson. She is a menacing bitch in the comics, and Cynthia portrayed that accurately. The show writers did a good job with revealing little about Waller besides that she has a plan for the suicide squad. Waller also detonates a device in Sharpel’s head causing his death.  The last positive was Harley Quinn brief cameo. It was a good nod to the current Suicide Squad in the comics. Harley is the Joker’s girlfriend but i don’t think the Joker will appear on Arrow.  I found a lot of negatives in this episode.

My problem with this episode can be listed into 4 negatives.  These negatives took away my enjoyment of this episode. They are Oliver’s storyline in this episode, lack of focus on the Suicide Squad, lack of action and intensity, and the story outline.  Oliver Queen is the main character of the show. However, every once in awhile main characters of television shows need a break. Oliver has fears and problems of Slade Wilson are apparent. We know that Deathstroke is a force to be reckon with. However, his plot took screen time away from the main focus which is the Suicide Squad. He was useless in this episode.  My second big issue was the lack of focus on the Suicide Squad. Sharpel doesn’t do anything but get killed. Bronze Tiger has no main role.  Deadshot is the only villain to have a big role in this episode. Diggle’s and Lyla’s relationship took away from the intensity of the episode. My third problem was the lack of action, intensity’s, and this includes my final problem with this episode’s story outline. Previous episodes have been very intense but this episode i couldn’t wait for it to end.  I felt like i lost an hour of my life watching this episode.  Oliver’s story took away from the episode and all of the subplots. Suicide Squad are master assassins at least have them fight someone or have Sharpel blow up something or someone instead of dying. There was a lack of creative screen writing for this episode. Seriously Bronze Tiger can go to toe with Green Arrow. At least do more with his character then stabbing someone in the back and have him driving a getaway car. The story was too focused on Oliver, Dingle and Lyla, and every other character besides the three assassins and one of them dies. It was overall a bad story.

My final verdict on this episode is this episode was a waste of television time and an hour of my life. Arrow fans know Slade Wilson is a bad ass. He’s one of the best reasons to watch the show.  I love this show but, damn, it was an horrible introduction to the Suicide Squad. I’ll give this episode 1.5 out of 5. It was one of the worst episodes of the show and it was the worst episode of the season.