Was Suicide Squad Actually as Bad as Everyone is Saying?

The original title for this blog was “Was Suicide Squad Actually Shit?”, but I changed it because I thought I’d be a little more polite in my title. Anyway, first off I want to have a rant about how frustrating it is to have something you’ve been SO stoked about to be ruined within days of its launch because of the internet. Thanks internet for putting a massive downer on my excitement and making me reluctant to even go and see the damn film. It’s not like I can avoid all the comments and negative reviews either, I work on the internet, I see this shit all day long.

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I know that part of the joy of films is being able to talk about it with your friends once you’ve seen it, it’s a water cooler topic for the office and it’s all part of the fun. But with the saturation of social media and online publications, this post-movie conversation doesn’t flow the same as it used to. Many of our opinions are already made up by the influencers we follow before we even get around to settling into a cinema seat. The other problem with the intense amount of content we see online is the amount of pre-launch hype and promotion we see around these hits too, it’s just too much and takes away a lot of the allure and mystery of seeing a new story play out on screen. There’s serious bucks going into making sure we’re all desperate to buy into the franchise and often this overindulgence of stunning and flawless marketing makes it difficult for the end product to live up to your expectations.


So, what Suicide Squad a pile of mierda or is is still worth watching? Well, as with all creative output of any type, that is always best left up to the individual to decide as it’s a very personal thing, one man’s junk is another man’s gold after all. It’s definitely not worth you trolling people on Twitter because they said they want to watch a movie even though the critics didn’t like it and yes, that actually happened to me this week. How about we say “I didn’t like it” or “it wasn’t for me” rather than “it’s shit and you shouldn’t go see it”, isn’t that approach a little more appropriate and interesting?

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Personally, I didn’t think Suicide Squad was amazing, but I also didn’t think it was deserving of the negativity it got. If anything, the problem was with the marketing and not the actual film. The trailers and pre-promotion of the film were heavily focused on The Joker and Harley Quinn, so if you’re going in expecting a Harley and Mister J film, you’ll be disappointed because they really aren’t the focus. I really dug the styling of The Joker and Harley, although the relationship between them is more manipulative, abusive pimp rather than crazy love and I really wish people wouldn’t glamorise this, as The Joker really is a nasty piece of work in this portrayal. Jared Leto was weaker than I was expecting too, although he didn’t have enough screen time or dialogue to really tell, he was not the star of the film for me and neither was Harley. It also made me sad about Heath Ledger again, as that guy was a pretty difficult performance and legacy to follow.

JAY HERNANDEZ as Diablo in Warner Bros. Pictures' action adventure "SUICIDE SQUAD," a Warner Bros. Pictures release.

What you’re actually getting is a Will Smith and Cara film, focusing on the Enchantress and Deadshot, characters than many of us don’t know much about. Will Smith is awesome, we all know this and in Suicide Squad he’s classic Smith and really stands out as the saviour of what could have been a really bad movie. Cara is fine, I don’t dig her acting style but I liked the character and the styling and she did look stunning, I just wasn’t expecting her to be the main focus and perhaps another character focus would have been more appealing?

The weakest thing about the film is the dialogue and the connection between the characters, there seems to have been some kind of confusion about what period of time the storyline is set over. As a viewer, I felt it was set over one day, which makes it very difficult to justify any comradery between the Suicide Squad members, there’s nothing saying that they’ve spent much time together or even know each other. A bit of dialogue half way through suggests the storyline actually falls over 3 days, as if they noticed this in the edit and had to slot something in, so that’s a bit odd. I really love all the design and characters, it was obviously just a massive pain in the butt to sufficiently share back stories of everyone and develop the relationships between them all in the space of just one movie, perhaps there should have been more of an introduction in other movies in the franchise?

For me and I’m sure many others will agree, the real beauty of this film is the soundtrack and the visuals. It’s almost like it should have been a really elaborate music video. There’s some shots in there that you know someone was just so desperate to make happen that they didn’t really care about how relevant it was and thus tied the shots together in a little bit of a messy fashion. When you do your research, some of these incredible shots have been taken directly from comic book pages, so you’ve gotta respect that. I love the costume design, I love the casting and some of the shots and lighting are truly immense. As with a lot of films in this genre though, they really ought to chill out with the OTT action sequences, it’s really not necessary.

To conclude (I haven’t used that ending to an article since I was at Uni and was told that’s how to finish an article) it’s not a shit film in my opinion. It’s just not as good as the trailers made it out to be. There are some truly awesome moments, some awesome design and some pretty decent performances, although I’m still confused by the guy who is styled and performed just how Tom Hardy would do the role but isn’t Tom Hardy, I guess Tom Hardy was too busy being awesome elsewhere? If you want to see a film, ignore the critics, go see it because you want to and because you were excited about it and make your own mind up. I’m just sorry for all you guys in the UK who have to pay a fortune for a cinema trip when my ticket was only 4 Euros last night and therefore not a massive loss if you don’t like the film.

I wasn’t going to sign off in the style that I used to that now seems a convention of blogging, but I’d genuinely like to know your thoughts on both the film and the possible failings of oversaturation of the online world when promoting films.

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2 thoughts on “Was Suicide Squad Actually as Bad as Everyone is Saying?

  1. Thank you for one of the first Suicide Squad reviews that didn’t completely trash the film, purely for the sake of it. I really enjoyed your honest review of the movie I had been highly anticipating for over a year, especially as Harley & Mr J are my favourite characters from within the DC franchise.

    I think you hit the nail on the head when you mention that one of the surprising – and disappointing things about the film is that the duo aren’t the stars of the film (as the multitude of trailers would have us believing in the lead up).
    I think that is likely one main reasons a lot of people disliked the film. It certainly will be a negative for me. However, it isn’t a deterrent from me still wishing to see the film.
    In fact, your review has rekindled some hope for the movie within me and I am finding myself wishing to go see it now.
    I was unable to go see the movie when it made it’s debut due to recovery from a minor surgery, and then over those first few days all the extremely negative, toxic reviews bombasted the internet and I was left doubting whether I should attempt to go watch the film at all. In the end deciding I would just wait for it to be released on DVD. (or Netflix).

    I think the extreme hyperbole and mass consumption of the film and it’s advertising online definitely contributed both to an unrealistic expectation of the film for most people as well as contributing to the onslaught of negative reviews it was instantly slammed with.
    Another thing which I found to be a real deterrent of the film is the overly romanticized view of Harley & The Joker which a lot of women seemed to walk away from the movie with.
    They aren’t “#relationshipgoals” as so many people have been tweeting and swooning about.
    Their portrayal should be one along the lines of typical Stockholm Syndrome and something far from a relationship goal anyone would willingly try to attain. Even the actors themselves both talked in interviews about how destructive and abusive the relationship is, to the point they had a lot of difficulty portraying it at times. I will note however, that both actors seemed shocked when watching the finished prodict to see that the majority of the scenes they did together didn’t actually make the film, so perhaps a follow up movie could be in the works? We can certainly hope.

    Enough rambling on from me, this is your movie review, not mine – I’m just excited that your review has sparked some enjoyment for the film in me once again! Thank you.

    1. Ahh Valerie, thank you so much for your comment, this is the sort of comment that makes bloggers want to keep writing. I completely agree with you 100%, it’s a massive shame that the internet ruins so much of the excitement these days and it’s going to harm the creative industries (I have a blog post in mind about this) Go see the film, you’ll enjoy it, it’s not the best thing ever made but it’s fun and Will Smith is brilliant in it.

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