Suicide Squad (2016) Director: David Ayer (15)

Suicide Squad isn't quite the mess you may have heard about. Sure, there are flaws but it turns out to be a watchable blockbuster with characters you want to see more of. Margot Robbie's playful Harley Quinn and Will Smith's strong lead Deadshot carry the film. We won't say much about Jared Leto's Joker.
The film sets up all of the characters well by investigating their back stories as intelligence chief Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) assembles her Task Force X; this super bad gang is being brought together to take on any threats to Midway City now a big main superhero is out of the picture to protect everyone. Harley Quinn's is the most uncomfortable story with her abusive, dominant relationship with the Joker explored - and it's not on to punch a woman in the face, Batman (Ben Affleck). Deadshot's story draws you in, an assassin who never misses (well, he does once) and who just wants to be a good father. Also a lot of fun are the troubled El Diablo (Jay Hernandez) - who can summon flames at will - Killer Croc (Adewale Akinnuoye-Agbaje) and the rough 'n' ready Captain Boomerang (Jai Courtney).
When Midway City is taken over by the witchy terror of the Enchantress, an ancient evil spirit who possesses the body of archaeologist Dr June Moore (Cara Delevingne), Task Force X are (reluctantly) dispatched on a suicide mission to stop her. It's a bit like Escape from New York as they go into the city with explosive devices injected into their necks, just like Snake Plissken (Kurt Russell) in the John Carpenter classic. It's a shame the powerful weapon the Enchantress is conjuring up looks more like the ending of Ghostbusters II though.
And onto Leto's Joker. He's not part of the Squad, he's on the periphery, so we see his character for his obsessive relationship with Harley Quinn and just being a bit of a pest really. Leto's Joker looks the part - he's very Scarface and Mexican cartel boss - but every time he comes on the screen you cringe. There's no threat there. There's no sense of terror like with Heath Ledger's Joker. He gets it all wrong and hams it up. It ain't pretty.
Still this DC foray is extremely enjoyable and it's a lot more fun seeing the bad guys assemble. We'd like to see a Harley Quinn spin off f'sure.
3/5 bubblegum pops