The Suicide Squad Review – beautifully macabre and unapologetically horrid, hilarious, and heartwarming. Hands down the Best Movie of the Summer and the DCEU.
Summer 2021 has had some great films. In this weird time, we were welcomed back to the theaters like big blockbuster films like Fast 9, our first Marvel film since Avengers: Endgame, and other pop-corn flicks like Snake Eyes: G.I. Origins. But of the summer slater, one film is coming in hot, wild, and loud and taking the title of the best movie of the summer. That film is James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad.
The film follows Task Force X, aka the Suicide Squad, who are enlisted by Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) to carry out a deadly mission on the island of Corto Maltese to retrieve Project StarFish from the new and not-so-American friendly regime. The island is heavily fortified and nearly impossible to break into undetected. So, what better team to send in than one composed of the deadliest criminals on the planet and are completely expendable?
The Suicide Squad is a hilarious and macabre thrill ride that will have audiences laughing and maybe even crying in their seats. Gunn takes the worst villains the DC Extended Universe has to offer and puts them through an emotional and physical wringer that many do not make it back from alive. Forewarning from Gunn and the marketing of the film, “Don’t get attached.” James Gunn was able to make the film exactly how he wanted (Unlike David Ayer’s Suicide Squad) and he did so unapologetically with everything DC Comics let him use. Gunn’s callous use of the characters creates an entirely new comic book movie experience and a very refreshing movie experience by adding stakes, consequences, and a fully-encompassing sense of unknowing that adds deeply gratifying layers of enjoyment.
One of the deepest layers of that enjoyment is the audio and visual components of the film. The Suicide Squad used practical effects as much as possible, giving the film a thoroughly convincing realism that fully engulfs viewers into the world. From hand-held gadgets to the giant tower, real-life constructs take the focus which allows the CG elements to flourish, creating a visually flawless blend of fiction and non-fiction. This visual marvel is enhanced by the audio mastery that captures every bullet casing drop, every bone chewed, and every act of violence, humor, emotion, etc. Which is then again enhanced by the impeccable weaving of music and score. You get a sense of it from the trailers and Steely Dan’s ‘Dirty Work.’ The song resonates with audiences and beautifully reflects the film. There is a lot more of that beautiful mix of music and content in the film. It is a masterpiece of audio and video craftsmanship that lies in the epitome of movie-going experiences.
All of the cinematic flare is brought to life by the emotional core of the film, which is a group of broken and degenerate individuals who come together to do what is right. A group that is literally dying to save the world. Every actor fully embodies their part, which makes every joke far more hilarious than it should be. Whether it be a sight gag, a one-liner, or even just a facial reaction, the humor and comedy are deeply penetrating. This truly profound humor is an amazing element of the film, because, without it, it would be a horrifically violent and visceral film about a bunch of people dying. The humor gives life to death. This isn’t to say that the film treats death lightly, though the body count might lead many to say otherwise. But the humor allows for what would otherwise be a showstopper to move on.
This ability to move on after death is crucial, as Gunn and the actors give all of the characters incredible life. Gunn has a certain knack for taking characters that many, especially comic book fans, consider pointless and stupid, and making them beloved. Gunn made the world fall in love with a one-line speaking tree, and he will make the world love this ragtag group of degenerates. As said earlier, every performer fully embodies their characters, which makes all of them pretty likable, which makes their deaths kind of suck. But that is the magic of it. Gunn allows the audience to connect and root for these criminals by humanizing them, then rips them away, oftentimes literally.
The Suicide Squad is a war movie. The opening scene is akin to that of Saving Private Ryan. It is brutally violent and countless deaths will fill the screen with gruesome realism. In most cases, this would be a showstopping tragic piece that sets a somber emotional weight for the rest of the film. But Gunn miraculously creates a beautiful Jackson Pollock from the viscera that, in combination with stellar performances, allows viewers to feel the weight of the deaths but also hilariously enjoy you are seeing men go into a warzone armed with boomerangs and a javelin alongside an anthropomorphic weasel. Gunn allows the audience to be okay with laughing at death without being disrespectful.
Every performer does a spectacular job, and honestly, the cast is too large to cover all of them in this The Suicide Squad Review. The more well-known actors, Viola Davis, Margot Robbie, and Idris Elba, deliver amazing performances, as expected. Davis perfectly puts the “wall” in Waller. Robbie is an even more realized version of Harley Quinn since Birds of Prey. And Elba is a complete badass as Bloodsport with one of the coolest and most functional suits in cinematic history. He is a walking armory that can provide any and all weapons. As great as those performers and their characters are, it is expected. Which does not take away from their miraculous work, but going further would not change anyone’s opinions or give information others already know or thought about.
Of the numerous characters, there were four personally stood out, John Cena as Peacemaker, Daniela Melchior as Ratcatcher 2, David Dastmalchian as Polka-Dot Man, and Steve Agee & Sylvester Stallone as King Shark. Cena as Peacemaker perfectly captures the willfully ignorant and douchie soldier who will do whatever he is told and justifies his actions with service to his nation. It is a hilarious reflection of another patriot-themed hero. While his propensity to self-think is hilariously distilled, his ability to accomplish the mission is not. Melchior perfectly captures an “I have better things to do” attitude with Ratcatcher 2. Ratcatcher 2 is a highly capable character, but would likely rather be asleep. She is also the most emotionally stable and mature member of the group, who acts as kind of a grounding element and the audience’s guide to the crazy of the film. Melchior does amazing work being weird but also the most normal of the bunch. Then there’s Dastmalchian as Polka-Dot Man. Gunn said he googled the stupidest character he could find and that is how Polka-Dot man came to be included in the film. Though he may be a complete joke in the comics, Dastmalschian steals numerous scenes as Polka-Dot Man and makes him a bonafide hero. Lastly, King Shark. King Shark is absolutely the most lovable character in the film. He is like a kids’ movie character that is mass-marketed and economically exploited. Viewers would want cuddly stuffed animal versions of him, at least until seeing he is a carnivorous death machine that eats people whole. The vicious and cuddly contrasts make for a wonderfully lovable character that is brought to life by Steve Agee’s joyfully juvenile motion capturing and Sylvester Stallone’s powerfully deep and purposely innocent of knowledge voice. Together Agee and Stallone create an innocent yet thoroughly feral creature that will splash audiences with fun and guts.
The Suicide Squad is the best movie of the summer and hands down the best movie of the DCEU. It is beautifully macabre and unapologetically horrid, hilarious, and heartwarming. James Gunn will make the world fall in love with DC’s biggest degenerates with the surprising amount of heart, both metaphorically and literally, The Suicide Squad has to offer. The film is a masterpiece of story, performance, and pure cinematic experience that is prime for the theatrical experience. It will also likely be repeated many times with HBO Max Streaming. The Suicide Squad is just an incredibly fun movie experience full of murder, mischief, mayhem, and mystery. It is rare for movies this popular to provide a true sense of not knowing, and on top of being a great film, Gunn was able to provide a real mystery to the outcome. How gratifyingly enjoyable the film is cannot be said enough, as evident by the bizarre tenses of the common words used in this sentence. For the sheer enjoyment and general masterpiece, The Suicide Squad is, my The Suicide Squad Review gets a 5/5.
The Suicide Squad Review
The Suicide Squad is the best movie of the summer and hands down the best movie of the DCEU. It is beautifully macabre and unapologetically horrid, hilarious, and heartwarming. James Gunn will make the world fall in love with DC’s biggest degenerates with the surprising amount of heart, both metaphorically and literally, The Suicide Squad has to offer. The film is a masterpiece of story, performance, and pure cinematic experience that is prime for the theatrical experience. It will also likely be repeated many times with HBO Max Streaming. The Suicide Squad is just an incredibly fun movie experience full of murder, mischief, mayhem, and mystery. It is rare for movies this popular to provide a true sense of not knowing, and on top of being a great film, Gunn was able to provide a real mystery to the outcome. How gratifyingly enjoyable the film is cannot be said enough, as evident by the bizarre tenses of the common words used in this sentence.