This past Thursday I was invited to an early screening of James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad at my local AMC theatre. As a lifelong fan of DC Comics and a lonely defender of its 2016 predecessor, the opportunity to see the film a week early was a big deal for yours truly.
I’m glad to report that the 2021 version of ‘The Suicide Squad’ is a home run from “The Horribly Beautiful Mind” of James Gunn. The film has anything and everything you could possibly want from the Squad on the big screen. Laughs, violence, blood, government coups, Amanda Waller threatening to blow somebody’s head off, and a giant mutated shark eating people whole. Gunn has captured the essence of what the team truly is: A group of rag-tag D-list villains who are fully aware that their days on this earth are numbered.
The performance of the film’s cast is the true hallmark of the movie. The star-studded cast led by Idris Elba (Bloodsport), John Cena (Peacemaker), and Academy Award Winner Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn) will leave you in stitches throughout the film. The audience that I viewed the movie with was laughing out loud for the vast majority of it’s 132-minute runtime.
Cena, in particular, had his most impressive performance on the big screen to date. Whether it’s his comedic wheelhouse that he’s been accustomed to or some of the more powerful moments of Squad, the 16-time WWE Champion shines in every scene he’s in.
Speaking of powerful, the movie can be incredibly emotional when it wants to be. Daniela Melchior’s ‘Rat Catcher 2’ is a surprise stand-out. The backstory of Melchior’s character makes for one of the most emotional scenes in the entire film.
The Suicide Squad is an anomaly in today’s super-hero-dominated film industry. A comic-book movie that doesn’t sacrifice anything from the source material while still creating an experience that fans and newcomers to the story alike can enjoy. The essence of the movie’s “Don’t Get Too Attached” tagline is exactly what The Suicide Squad is all about. Seriously though, don’t get too attached.
You can see James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad when it releases in theatres, and on HBO Max, this Friday.