Do other people watch movies and think to themselves, “what is this movie even about?” or is it just me? I swear, I have done that many times over the course of this, “First Time Watching” blog series.
Do I just not follow the story properly? An hour into watching Suicide Squad, I had no idea what it was about. Am I dumb? Or can I just blame the movie? Because I am definitely going to blame the movie.
Three minutes in, three different songs had already played. That was the first tip that the movie had a large budget. It was showing off.
Let’s get this out of the way right now. The movie was fine. The plot was weird. The characters were…I don’t know. I’ll get into that later.
This is normally the part where I go through the plot, with the assistance of Wikipedia to touch on the important parts. I’m going to stray from that path and just talk about the movie as I saw it.
So, Viola Davis is the architect of a group of criminals. She thinks World War 3 will be one fought with superpowers, so it would be best if the government had the best supernatural humans working for them.
During her presentation to the government, a Doctor turns into a witch, who is 6373 years old (thank you, on-screen biography), and does some hocus pocus that gets Viola Davis permission to form her task force.
And then this witch, who was seemingly on Viola’s side, betrays her? Something about taking over the world. The witch has a brother. It’s a family business, I guess.
But that’s okay! Have no fear, a group was conveniently just put together to stop demons like her! Perfect!
This is what lost me for a little bit. Viola Davis formed this group before there was a real threat. And then the threat is the special guest she brought in for her presentation to the government. Okay, whatever.
Viola’s sidekick is a guy in the military, who I recognized from a show called, The Killing. In that show was a character named, Bullet, who also popped up in the television series, Scream, before being in 13 Reasons Why.
I just had to get that out. There was a stretch where every TV show I watched had this same actor.
Anyway, sidekick guy is in love with the Doctor who is possessed by a demon. Is it a demon? Can I call it a demon? Let’s call it a demon.
Having sat through a whole season of Nancy Drew, where characters were constantly being possessed by spirits, this storyline had me dead on arrival.
The cast of goons that were put together included Will Smith. I’ll be honest, I couldn’t take him seriously. I didn’t think he fit the role.
He was in jail because he killed people for money. But he also really loved his daughter. He was a #GirlDad to the extreme, except he was also a bad guy who murdered people. It was very confusing.
I understand trying to be a multidimensional human being nowadays, but this wasn’t it. I didn’t find him tough, or menacing, or dangerous, or scary, or even murderous. If anything, he gave off, “I took the fall for someone; I’m not actually guilty” vibes.
Next up we had Harley Quinn. You may remember her from the Halloween costumes that consumed your Instagram feed five (5) years ago.
To me, she was the star of the movie and it wasn’t even close. Margot Robbie played that character so well.
Her boyfriend is the Joker, who was played by Jared Leto. Every time he was on-screen, I was waiting for him to say, “and we’re 30 seconds to Mars” in his Joker voice.
I’ve heard people say that Leto is the worst Joker. Now, feel free to tell me I don’t even go here, but I thought he did a good job. Granted, I’ve never seen anyone else’s portrayal of the Joker.
I thought he was fine. Was he supposed to be crazier? What did people want from him? I’m genuinely curious.
Honestly, there wasn’t really anything for him to do in the movie. Nothing revolved around him. He just felt like a character they wrote into the script, so the other actors could take a breather.
To prove just how out of the loop I am with this entire universe, I thought the Joker was going to be a member of Viola’s squad. I was even anticipating his dance-walk down a staircase, but I guess that’s a different movie.
The Joker was just there. Harley Quinn overshadowed him.
Also in the squad was an Australian with a boomerang, a guy I’m going to call “Fire Palms”, and someone named Killer Croc, who spoke as if he had his retainer in. I think I’m missing someone, but they killed him off early, didn’t they?
There was also a Japanese woman with a sword and I had no clue where she came from or what her role was. She wasn’t a criminal. Was she just back-up? Was (what seemed like) the entire military not enough?
I wasn’t that invested in the charactersI didn’t care to see them succeed. I didn’t worry about them, should they fail. Maybe I was just in the mood for being apathetic, or maybe it was the script not developing the characters enough.
We may never know.
Anyway, this group is at the mercy of Viola. She threatens to kill them if they don’t get the job done (hunt down the witch and save the world). If they succeed, she will take 10 years off their jail sentence.
That’s it? For criminals this bad?
To me, it felt like when a teacher lets the class go out for recess early, but it’s only a 30-second (not to Mars) head start. It’s kind of chintzy.
One guy said he had two life sentences. Ten years wouldn’t make a difference.
These individuals didn’t want to die and that, at times, forced them to keep going, even if they wanted to stop.
I don’t mean this in a dark way, but it was weird that none of the characters were like, “going back to jail for the rest of my life would be worse than death”. You know, a dramatic movie quote.
None of these menacing criminals said that, I don’t think. The scariest and most destructive inmates they could find, were actually quite acquiescent. I just wanted some push back, other than Harley having a plan for the Joker to rescue her.
Anyway, they find the witch and kill her. The Doctor is reunited with sidekick guy. Will Smith gets to go home and help his daughter find the hypotenuse of a right-angle triangle.
Harley Quinn is broken out of her cell within a cell, by the Joker.
There was a scene with Viola Davis after the credits, but I have no idea what it was about.
So, that’s Suicide Squad from my eyes.
Parts of the movie were filmed in Toronto. I remember there were videos on social media of the Batmobile pursuing the Joker down Yonge Street in the middle of the night. So, I knew to look at the background of scenes and see what I could spot.
I’m pretty sure Harley Quinn “broke a window” at the Eaton Centre.
There were some scenes at subway stations. I’d recognize those white tiles anywhere. I saw “Downsview” on the wall in one scene, and there was a Bay St. sign in another.
I wonder if they used any of the deserted subway stations for filming. Deserted subway stations freak me out, by the way. Toronto has some “ghost stations”. There are videos of them on YouTube. Apparently, some trains take riders on a detour through them sometimes.
Everything about them just gives me the creeps. I don’t get this way about many things.
Now that I’ve looked up filming locations, they did film at Lower Bay Station, which is deserted.
The final battle scene was filmed at Union Station. I kind of guessed that while watching, but I couldn’t figure out exactly where inside the station. The multiple staircases were throwing me off.
Anyway, the movie just felt like they wanted to film a lot of cool action scenes and then build a plot around it. Harley Quinn and the Joker were the only character that felt 100% believable.
The Fire Palms character had a bunch of face tattoos, but every time I saw him I thought about how long he must’ve had to sit in the makeup chair every day.
The mission to stop the demonic witch from taking over the world was a bit too tropey for me. The reunion of the sidekick with his love interest at the end didn’t even give me “happy ending” feelings.
The movie just didn’t work for me. I’m sorry if that is offensive.
I’m not someone who is well-versed with the DC Universe. I couldn’t tell you what’s a DC film and what’s a Marvel film. That is not my realm of expertise.
So, take my thoughts with a grain of salt if you must. I know not what I watch.
However, IMDB is telling me the movie is rated 5.9/10, so maybe my analysis is spot-on? See, I knew I wasn’t dumb!
I’m glad I finally watched Suicide Squad to see what it was about.
Thanks for reading!
Have you seen Suicide Squad? What did you like, or dislike, about it? Are you creeped out by deserted subway stations?