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The Suicide Squad (2021) Review: The Best Superhero Movie of 2021

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The Movie

Title: The Suicide Squad

Released date: August 5, 2021

Director: James Gunn

Cast: Margot Robbie, Idris Elba, John Cena, Joel Kinnaman, Sylvester Stallone, Viola Davis, David Dastmalchian, Daniela Melchior, Michael Rooker, Jai Courtney, Peter Capaldi, and etc.

The Plot

Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) sent a Task Force X team to Corto Maltese to help the US government. Task Force X, or formally known as the Suicide Squad, is a team that consists of super-powered criminals either facing a death sentence or a prison sentence for life. They were forced by the government to work for them in exchange for reducing their sentences. Once they joined the team, their necks were planted with a bomb. So, if they abandon their mission, their heads explode. The team consists of Bloodsport (Idris Elba), Peacemaker (John Cena), King Shark (Sylvester Stallone), Polka-Dot Man (David Dastmalchian) and Ratcatcher 2 (Daniela Melchior). The team was also helped by the presence of Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) and Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie). Their goal was to destroy a laboratory, Jotunheim.

The Good

Hiring James Gunn

Warner Bros' decision to hire James Gunn (after his infamous public firing from Marvel/Disney) to reboot the movie from the original (Suicide Squad 2016) was the right move on their part. One just needs to watch his previous movies, Guardians of the Galaxy (2014) and Super (2010), to understand how talented he is as a director. From his character writing, pacing, and action sequences, James Gunn knows how to showcase every single scene to its fullest. The end result is one of the best superhero movies of the year 2021, a year that was already jam-packed with so many other superhero movies.

The Characters

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The main thing I really loved about this movie was its characters. For a movie with a huge cast of characters, each one of them stands out in their own way. Not all of them received full development. Some were pushed aside despite showing some promise. But James Gunn covers the decision by giving them a chance to shine and a purpose in the movie. Bloodsport, played by Idris Elba, and John Cena, playing Peacemaker, are the two standout characters from the movie. They banter as one would expect from two alpha male characters, but they maintain a professional attitude and remain focused on the task at hand. A huge nod must also be given to the costumes and design for the characters. They really popped out in the movie, which made it easier for me to recognize which was which.

Awesome Pacing

The pacing of this movie is everything. While in the same movie universe as Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, which requires more than two hours to tell its story and fails at that, this movie succeeds in telling the story and provides good enough character development. The Suicide Squad's official runtime is well over two hours, but while watching this movie, I never felt the runtime. And this comes down to the pacing. James Gunn knows when to slow down the scene and increase the pacing when required. Not a single scene made me feel like it was too long or too short. Because of that, the movie felt fun and enjoyable as I was watching it. A slight good moment from the movie is the use of nature as text to notify the audience of the scene they were watching or about to watch.

Over-The-Top Action

The action sequences in this movie are silly, over-the-top, and bloody. This movie is rated R, which means violence and blood within a movie are allowed. And James Gunn uses full advantage of that as this movie is equipped with violence and blood in its action sequences. However, and this is where the brilliance of the director came into play, the bloody action scene never overstayed its welcome. The camera shows the scene and moves on from it. It never lingers with its shots to the point where the audience feels sick watching the movie. The action scenes in this movie were written, made, and shot to entertain the audience in a mature way while still being respectful to us.

The Bad

Villain Problem

The only minor issue I had with this movie was the villain. Now, the actual movie is filled with villains. The heroes of the movie are villains being forced to become heroes. And then, there was an actual villain who was even more evil than our group of heroes. But the villain being showcased never really gets fully developed. The evil government people are evil government people because they hate the other countries from other parts of the world that look down on them. There was some interesting information there, but it was never really focused on by the writer. Then, there was another villain in the movie, Starro, who was sort of a big obstacle our heroes needed to beat in the finale of the movie. The same issue with the first: they gave the villain something, but the development was dropped before it could start working.

The Summary

The Suicide Squad 2021 is a major upgrade from the original movie. And all of this comes down to the people working behind the scenes of this movie. James Gunn and his team understand the story they were given and use it to its potential. When I imagine a Suicide Squad movie, I imagine unique and interesting characters, an intriguing story, and out-of-this-world action scenes. And the movie delivers on all of the things it needed to be. An underdeveloped villain aside, the movie was awesome and a joy to watch.

The Rating

9/10

© 2021 Fadhli Dzil

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