Harley Quinn: Birds of Prey
By Josh Vogt
Birds of Prey is the newest in a line of DC movies that attempt to build a shared universe, much like Marvel has done. However, it was slightly confusing trying to figure out what parts of what movies are canon. This led me to a game of figuring out what we’re supposed to care about as viewers in this specific story.
I entered the movie with low expectations but was immediately blown away. The character of Harley Quinn was let loose with deadpool-like free reign as a narrator. Margot Robbie was born to play this role, killing every scene she was in and selling the character to me more than Suicide Squad ever had time to.
However, just like Suicide Squad, this film introduced many characters which took away from the plot. The large ensemble cast seemed like it was quickly thrown together, which didn’t leave as much screen time together as a “team”. Each new character was given a quick backstory and then tossed into the movie far too quickly.
Even though the number of characters was overwhelming, Ewan McGregor absolutely slayed as the villain. Through a great departure from his normal persona, Black Mask was a fun and entertaining villain to watch. But like the other characters, it seemed he was glanced over. I would have liked to see the villain be more present throughout the film.
Aside from this, the fight scenes were something else entirely. They creatively used the sets with wonderful choreography throughout. The action was fast, unique, and felt more complex than other superhero films that feel very simple. The directors weren’t afraid to get a little bloody with an R rating, but balanced the gore and glory so as not to feel excessive.
The music was a mix of modern and old songs, mainly by women and done in a slightly darker style. Some of them were done very well and added to the film, but others were hit or miss versions of classic songs, but this is more of an opinion based on my music preference. From an unbiased standpoint, the soundtrack was overall fairly well put together for the film.
The plot of the film was all over the place and seemed less developed than the fights or even the music. The timeline jumped around a lot, which was partially due to the trope of an unreliable narrator. This was often a bit annoying, as the audience was invested in the current scene and then would be redirected back in time to introduce another character.
Overall, the movie was a fun ride and is certainly worth checking out while it is still in theaters. DC has shown that they can make very good films when they relax and stop trying to be Marvel. At the very least, this film is much better than Suicide Squad.