'The Suicide Squad' - Movie Review

They already did a film adaptation of "Suicide Squad," but this is totally different because it has a "The" in front of it. It is, in most senses, a sequel: several characters return from the previous outing. The big difference is the switch to James Gunn as director and what I assume (based on the impressive amount of blood) was an R-rating. James Gunn is the man who rocketed to super-hero-stardom with his spectacularly entertaining interpretation of "Guardians of the Galaxy" ... notice that that's Marvel's cinematic universe, and this is the DC universe - not a lot of people get to cross that line. I'm in the minority that liked the original take, although I fully acknowledge that it had a lot of problems. This is better, and critics absolutely loved it. I'm not as impressed as they are: most of the best jokes (several of them very funny) were in the trailers, and I thought the action was only so-so.

Gunn is totally unsentimental about his characters: he kills off well over half the squad, and they don't get grand exits. Just splat - they're gone. I mean ... I get it, that's more realistic and mostly better than a speech before a grand gesture and noble death (I'm thinking of El Diablo in the previous movie, picking his time and dying to save others) but can we compromise somewhere in between occasionally?

There's been a lot of talk about various movies "feeling like comic books," and this one certainly manages to do that. "Into the Spiderverse" did it by deliberately lifting features of text comics into an animated movie. This one does it with frenetic energy, bright colours and a logic that only works in comics. One disadvantage of the "feels like a comic" thing is that it doesn't work as well in live action - we see real humans (instead of animated ones) and the logic needs to be a bit more ... real. Gunn mostly makes it work, but I have somewhat mixed feelings about this one ...