– by Joseph Jammer Medina

Image via Warner Bros.

Image via Warner Bros.

A few days ago, Warner Bros. and DC released Suicide Squad: Extended Cut on Digital HD. This marks the second extended cut release of one of their DC Extended Universe films. Earlier this year, we experience one hell of a fan backlash on the heels of the Batman v Superman theatrical release. While that movie had its strengths, there was no denying that it had cohesion problems. However, when the Batman v Superman: Ultimate Edition, a cut of the film that boasts 30 extra minutes, was released, many of the issues fans had with the film were fixed. Of course, not everyone was pleased, but it’s fair to say that a sizable chunk of agreed that the Ultimate Edition should be the cut of the film that anyone sees.

A few months back, Suicide Squad hit theaters, and like Batman v Superman before it, the reception wasn’t so hot. While many believed the movie to be a fun experience, there was still a lot wrong with the flick. My own personal issues revolved around the terrible villain, stupid plot, and the predictable climax and overall narrative. It succeeded in actually getting me to like the squad themselves, but on pretty much every other front, it fell short.

So when it was announced that Suicide Squad would be getting an extended cut, I naturally wondered if this would be a similar situation to Batman v Superman. Would this extended cut fix many of the problems that the theatrical cut? Could this edit of the movie actually change the opinion of those who not just disliked, but hated, the movie?

Well, folks, I’ve purchased, I’ve watched, and I’m here to tell you, if you already disliked Suicide Squad, this cut isn’t going to change anything. All the problems with the villain, Amanda Waller’s dumb plan, and the muddled, convoluted plot are all just as flawed as they used to be.

Interestingly enough, rather than use the extra11 minutes of runtime to solve many of these issues, this cut chooses to strengthen its already-strongest feature: its characterization of the squad. Most of that time is spent in the middle part of the flick, where these baddies interact with one another. And let me say, a lot of those extra scenes really worked for me. It helped clarify what they all thought of one another, and oh-so-mildly helped with the motivations of Deadshot. 

Another unexpected area the extended cut helped with is the relationship between Harley Quinn and Joker (though I will say, if you hated Jared Leto’s Joker already, this won’t change your mind). About maybe 2 minutes are added between these two. Literally, there are only a couple of lines early on in her flashback that clarify what Harley did to Joker while he was at Arkham, and then there’s that motorcycle scene that was released a few days ago online, in advance of the home release of the movie. It’s not much, but it helps in making Joker’s journey to loving Harley Quinn a bit more believable.

So here’s the big question: should you get Suicide Squad: Extended Cut — hell, should you even spend your time on this cut?

That depends on you. If you already hated the theatrical cut of the movie, and didn’t find anything to enjoy in the interactions between Task Force X, then I’d skip this one. You’ll be getting more of the same, with very little being done to fix the core problems with the story. Those who got a kick out of these characters, however, will get a few more scenes with them interacting with one another. It certainly helps in understanding the team dynamic, and if you already forgave the crappy plot and villain, you’ll likely still find stuff to enjoy. If you have yet to see the film, and are just deciding if you want to watch the theatrical or extended versions, I’d go with the extended. As marginally better as it is, it’s enough for me to recommend one or another.

All in all, I’m very disappointed by this cut. Had this been a Batman v Superman: Ultimate Edition level of overhaul, this edition ofSuicide Squad could have been everything I hoped for. Sadly, not every cut can re-shape our experience of a movie, and when all said and done, this one only enhances the good aspects of the movie, extending the gap in quality between all the good parts and bad parts of the film.

What did you think? Did you like Suicide Squad: Extended Cut? Let us know your thoughts down below!

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Joseph Jammer Medina is an author, podcaster, and editor-in-chief of LRM. A graduate of Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Television, Jammer's always had a craving for stories. From movies, television, and web content to books, anime, and manga, he's always been something of a story junkie.