SUICIDE SQUAD Review — Wildly Entertaining

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Suicide Squad reviewSuicide Squad Review by Lisa Johnson Mandell

Sometimes I feel like throwing Rotten Tomatoes at Rotten Tomatoes, and I know I’m not alone. While my Suicide Squad review is quite positive, on the whole, the latest film from the DC Comics universe only rated 30% fresh on RT, when last I looked. According to Business Insider, the fans are raging. In fact, one irate fan even started a petition to shut down the review aggregation site. So that will never happen, no matter how many signatures they collect, but what IS expected to happen is the action packed film will draw in an August record breaking $120 million opening weekend.

Personally, I understand why the fans feel so affronted by the critics’ cranky assessments. I went in expecting to hate it, and I came out kind of loving it–especially Margot Robbie’s gleeful Harley Quinn, who I think is the best thing to happen to superhero flicks in a long time. She’s fresh, she’s sexy, she’s funny, and boy, does she pack a wallop. Although it takes a Joker (Jared Leto) to rescue her, it’s clear she could do it all on her own with the right motivation. And Will Smith as Deadshot? Perfection.

The film begins with much needed background info on the members of the squad, who are all in prison, most of them put there by Batman (yes, Ben Affleck has a cameo). Superman is still in the ground where we left him in Batman Vs. Superman. Thank you, director David Ayer (Training Day, The Fast and the Furious) for not assuming that we already know everything about them. Speaking of Ayer, rumor has it he’s not too pleased with the fact that Warner Bros. recut the film to make it lighter and brighter. I, on the other hand, agree with the studio for once–I’m tired of dark and dreary superhero movies. Suicide Squad is much more fun.

These super villains are assembled into a team and sent out to do battle with the worst of the worst. After all, reasons plot hatcher Amanda Waller (Viola Davis), they are expendable. If they come back alive, their sentences will be reduced, and their remaining prison terms will be improved.

Sure, towards the end the film devolves into the same old crashing, flashing, lightening-infused battle for the future of mankind that we’ve seen in just about every superhero movie that’s ever been made. That disappointed me, I’m not going to lie. But everything that leads up to it is just plain fun, albeit violent. There’s even something weirdly sexy in the chemistry between Harley Quinn and the Joker.

In essence, Suicide Squad has everything a summer blockbuster should, without taking itself too seriously. It is the very essence of “wildly entertaining.”

Rated PG-13

2 Hours 3 Minutes

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SUICIDE SQUAD Review — Wildly Entertaining

By Lisa Johnson Mandell

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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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