The Suicide Squad: The Best Superhero Movie of the Year

James Gunn Delivers a Hilariously Violent and Thrilling Accomplishment

James Gunn did not spend his 20s the way most people do. On an Instagram Q&A from a few weeks back, Gunn explained how he did not have much of a social life as a young man, and instead spent most of his time sitting and writing, breaking as many stories as possible.

This is a great lesson to any aspiring storyteller, the more you do it, the better you get. Gunn has gone from writing live-action Scooby-Doo films (which were great, by the way) to raising the bar on the emotional quality of stories told in superhero films.

James Gunn is obsessed with comic books and it shows.

Everything he does regarding superheroes, including his “Guardians of the Galaxy” films, pays significant homage and respect to obscure comicbook source material, and it pays off very well in “The Suicide Squad.”

How many people knew about characters like “King Shark” and “Polka-Dot Man” before this film? I certainly didn’t, and these characters have been around for decades.

It takes someone as dedicated as Gunn to not only bring these characters to the mainstream, but make them as likable and fun as they are.

This film makes these weird, obscure characters the backbone of the story, and it works to great effect. Everybody in this film gets plenty of solid moments that allow them each to develop, so it leads to a higher drama in every fight sequence, knowing that Gunn will happily kill off any of your favorite characters at any second.

The plot is solid, but it really isn’t the point of the film. The point is watching these goofballs destroy everything in their path, while completing really satisfying character arcs.

The challenge of this movie was always going to be the pacing due to the sheer amount of characters that needed to be introduced, established and grown. The film commits to a chapter-by-chapter approach, allowing it to jump from character to character in a way that does not feel jarring.

If you hated the first “Suicide Squad” film, or if you didn’t even see it, worry not. This movie has nothing to do with the first one. It’s really more of a reboot than anything else.

The last great thing about this film is that it is not very reminiscent of any other superhero movie. It does not follow any formula, it simply goes where it wants.

If you are a bit jaded by the typical superhero film that has been getting made recently, this is a film for you. Unique, bloody, fun and sometimes profound, this is a great accomplishment from James Gunn, who may be the best comic book filmmaker working today.