Suicide Squad

You’d think an ancient demon threatening armageddon would be hard to forget, but Suicide Squad proves otherwise.

Aug 29, 2016 — The plot concerns a group of incarcerated super-villains made to form a super-powered Delta Force. Will Smith plays Deadshot, an assassin who never misses. Margot Robbie plays Harley Quinn, a former psychiatrist whose super-power is finding The Joker attractive. Viola Davis plays Amanda Waller, the puppet-master who sells the project to the Washington brass. The rest of the cast fall somewhere between underwritten and extraneous.

The Dirty Dozen (1976), this ain’t. Deadshot won’t kill women or children. Harley’s just a brat in love with a psycho. The Bad News Bears (1976) had more edge.

Even the Batman cameo disappoints. In Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), Batman erupted from the shadows to cripple thugs with brutal efficiency. Here, he floats down well-lit side streets to tap super-villains on the shoulder.

The only characters packing genuine menace are Waller and The Joker, neither of whom is on the team.

The Joker is hardly in the film. Jared Leto mashes up Heath Ledger’s intensity in The Dark Knight (2008) with Jack Nicholson’s flamboyant camp in Batman (1989). The resulting performance is awful, but at least it holds your attention.

The rest is forgettable. There’s a scene eighty-some-minutes in where the squad rescues Waller. I thought the movie over. But I’d forgotten the film’s antagonists, a pair of supernatural entities bent on world destruction or some-such. Instead of the end-credits, I faced forty more minutes of contrived plot and overwrought CGI, most of which I’d forgotten before I left the theater.

Grade: F

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