Warner Brothers has just released the second installment of the Ben Affleck Batman Universe with “Suicide Squad.”
After the underwhelming “Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice” the good news is … ‘Suicide Squad” is better than that clunker. The bad news is … it is still a clunker.
Let’s start with what works. “Suicide Squad” has done a nice job with casting and the performances by Will Smith, Margot Robbie and Jared Leto are solid. Will Smith is badass as Deadshot. He gets to wear a cool costume, crack wise and kick ass! What more could you want?
Margot Robbie has the toughest role of creating the first live action incarnation of Harley Quinn. She definitely rises to the occasion and is without a doubt the star of the film. Next up… The Joker!
Personally I am not a fan of the tattooed, grill-wearing look that the filmmakers chose for this version of Batman’s #1 nemesis, but Leto’s version of The Joker is a thing of beauty. Leto’s take on the iconic villain will indeed be compared to Heath Ledger’s Oscar winning role but it’s really apples and oranges as the two versions are quite different. Leto immediately plays it more over the top and in your face. Ledger was more of a slow burn into madness. Sadly, The Joker doesn’t have a lot to do with the actual story and is really only here to be established for films to come.
As for their onscreen chemistry, Robbie and Leto are perfectly matched as the crazed lovebirds. The characters fill the screen with unpredictability and when the two of them are on screen together there is a sense of tension and excitement at all times.
The number 1 problem with “Suicide Squad” is the villain played by Cara Delevingne (Paper Towns, Pan). Delevingne is given the laughable task of playing the “Enchantress.” This is the type of villain that is blessed with powers from an ancient civilization and can turn ordinary people into their minions at will. When she does, the sky opens up, a worm hole is created and lightning ensues. “The Enchantress” starts out cool in her opening origin story but by the third act is reduced to a headdress wearing, gyrating version of Carrie who shouts to the heavens and moves big objects with her mind. This would be fine in a “Ghostbusters” movie but here it is just d-u-m-b.
It’s just silly that this is the type of villain director David Ayer chose to write because it is an adversary that the Suicide Squad could never possibly defeat with their insanity and limited skills.
SPOILER: If you are looking for an amazing Batman sequence much like Ant- Man and Spider-Man in “Captain America: Civil War” then you will be massively disappointed. Although the Caped Crusader was featured in the trailer here his screen time adds up to about 90 seconds. There is also another Justice League cameo the happens in such a “flash” you will wonder why it was even included at all.
While the first act will keep you entertained, this third act will have your eyes rolling so much you might actually give yourself a headache.
Pat Francis currently hosts the popular comedy/music podcast “Rock Solid,” called 1 of the 8 great music podcasts to put in your ears by USA Today and featuring artists such as Melissa Etheridge, Sammy Hagar and Susanna Hoffs. His frequent appearances on Jimmy Pardo’s top rated podcast “Never Not Funny” are fan favorites. Pat began his entertainment career as a stand-up comic in Chicago, IL. After touring the country and performing in 42 states at comedy clubs and colleges, he relocated to Los Angeles, CA. There he appeared as a comedian on Comedy Central, AMC, the UCB and is a yearly regular at the San Francisco Sketchfest. For the past 5 years he has also served as Co-Host of the yearly event Pardcast-A-Thon which to date has raised over 700,000 for Smile Train. When not entertaining people in person he also makes his living as a Story Producer for reality television programs. It is also important to know that Pat is a monkey in a human mask.