‘Birds of Prey’ Exceeds Viewer’s Expectations



Main character, Harley Quinn, laughs in the middle of a grocery store. Photo Courtesy of @birdsofprey Instagram.

Highly anticipated since 2018, DC’s newest movie, Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn) was released on Feb. 7 and turned out to be pretty fun and way better than I expected. I figured it would be like Suicide Squad (which was complete and utter garbage) because of Margot Robbie playing Harley Quinn again. Turns out though, I was wrong. Birds of Prey was actually pretty sick. 

DC wasn’t receiving the best reception last decade. Most of their movies have turned out to be major disappointments for fans and major embarrassments for them. My grievance for their work lies in the fact that, aside from some of their animated movies and Shazam!, none of their films were very fun to watch. Their fight scenes were generic and most of their humor fell flat. Those movies, however, belong to a different time. To start the new decade off, DC had a fresh chance to redeem themselves and make a movie that could finally satisfy people instead of making them want to stick toothpicks into their eyes and ears. They were able to do just that with Birds of Prey

The movie primarily follows Harley Quinn after her break up with Mr. J. She’s left completely distraught as she gets herself into all sorts of troubling situations, many involving people who hold terrible grudges against her. One person in particular, Ronan Sionis or Black Mask played by Ewan McGregor, especially wants her dead now that the Joker’s no longer there to protect her. To save her own skin, Quinn embarks on a quest to do him a favor and hopefully get him to spare her. Other major characters include Renee Montoya played by Rosie Perez, a detective trying to solve a case over Sionis, Dinah Lance or Black Canary, played by Jurnee Smollett-Bell, who works for Sionis but secretly helps Renee on the side, and Cassandra Cain, a child who picks pockets and get her hands on something that puts her in a seriously dangerous situation. There’s also Elizabeth Winstead as Helena Bertinelli also known as Huntress, but she’s easy to be overlooked. It wasn’t even that she was a very boring character, she was just totally forgettable compared to the others. These characters have their own little subplots going on, all of them including or narrated by Quinn, that come together for the movie’s climax. 

This movie has been doing god awful in the box office so far. The production value was $84.5 million and ended up grossing a mere $81 million worldwide. Imagine being DC making another movie that made less than the production value. As bad as most of their movies have been over the last 20 or so years, at least most of them have done significantly well in the box office, and it’s a shame too because this one is actually good. I think the reason that this movie had a lack of viewership is the fact that it was rated R, unlike most superhero movies that have PG-13 ratings bringing in everyone and their grandmothers. On the other hand, there’s the general adult demographic who probably thought this was going to be too silly to be rated R and as much of a waste of time as Suicide Squad but with more profanity and edgier jokes. That explains a whole lot when it comes to the fact that the movie didn’t make much money. 

As bad as this movie did in the box office, I know I definitely enjoyed it, and I’m sure many other people would as well. The fight scenes were fun to watch but kinda too violent. There are so many legs being broken in this movie so if you’re squeamish or whatever prepare yourself. I liked most of the characters, the villain withheld a fair balance between comical and intimidating, and even Huntress had a pretty funny scene. I liked the lighthearted tone this movie gave, especially when you compare it to other DC movies. Some parts were kind of stupid, like the way they made Black Canary’s sonic scream sound. It’s supposed to sound powerful, not like one harrowing note that very clearly doesn’t sound like it’s coming from her mouth. The rest of the movie is really great though, and I recommend you go see it.