Birds Of Prey - Review
The first comic book movie of the year is the DC team up flick Birds of Prey. While Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn has been seen in Suicide Squad, this was a much better showcase of her talents.
The non-linear format of the first two acts works to reinforce the manic energy the movie seeks to provide. Having Harley narrate the events of the story was a fun choice, and provided some of the film's best humor.
Cathy Yan's direction let Robbie shine as Harley, and gave some really fun fight scenes to the superhero movie lexicon. It is fun, especially nowadays, to see something in a movie that has never been seen before. To use roller skates during a car chase is a stroke of genius, and provided the film with one of it's best moments.
The other characters in the movie didn't get as much development as they should have, but the pieces they did get were strong enough for people to be invested in them. Mary Elizabeth Winstead had the least development of the 4 main members, but it speaks to the talent of the actor with what she was able to do the role. The Huntress was an integral part of the story, and had some of the best fight scenes.
Jurnee Smollett-Bell brought the Black Canary to the big screen. She made the role her own, and was one of the highlights of the supporting cast. Audiences are familiar with the characters powers, due to the 3 versions of the character in the Arrowverse. Her big climactic moment did not disappoint, and was a really well earned and pleasing moment of the film.
Rosie Perez was born to play Renee Montoya. The character has a rich history in DC lore, and Perez is the pitch perfect version. She slipped into the role seamlessly, and it felt like she had been encompassing that role for a decade already.
Ewan McGregor might have been having the most fun out of anyone in the cast. His turn as Roman Sionis or "The Black Mask" was one of the most inspired things to come out of comic book movies in ages. McGregor was a great villain, and while he was mustache-twirly at times, it was so entertaining to see the choices he made that it was forgivable.
Ella Jay Basco was wonderful too. She held her own with all of the adults, and was a beacon of light throughout the movie. She has a long future as that Cassandra Cain if she wants it.
The film itself had a lot of fun moments, and while disjointed, could still be followed pretty easily. It was tonally uneven however. Sometimes the movie was a meta, over the top, campy romp and then would suddenly jar into this more subtle and subdued character study. It might have benefited them to pick one and go, but Birds Of Prey still manages to get its point across effectively.
Birds Of Prey is one of the most entertaining and flashy comic book movies to date. It has a lot of heart, a lot of humor, and a lot of spectacle. It doesn't take it self seriously, but also isn't vacuous. Hopefully this is the start of a Harley Quinn renaissance on the big screen.
Birds Of Prey is now playing in theaters everywhere.