One of my most anticipated movies of 2020 was Birds of Prey (and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn). The trailer promised a fun, technicolored adventure with one of Gotham’s most famous psychopaths and it sure did deliver. Unlike most DC movies, which are typically dark and super edgy, this movie is actually fun.
After the Joker and Harley break up, Harley is suddenly a target for every thug in Gotham who has ever had a grievance with her. One of those thugs happens to be Roman Sionis, aka Black Mask, the biggest crime boss in the city and a major narcissist with daddy issues. However, the challenges she faces don’t seem that big when she teams up with three other lovely, deadly ladies– Huntress, Black Canary, and Renee Montoya– and the tiny pickpocket Cassandra Cane.
The story is told in a sort of erratic series of flashbacks and interjecting voice-overs by Harley woven into the present-day events. Some people I know found this annoying, but I felt that it fit for a film told from Harley Quinn’s perspective since it reflects her scatterbrained, chaotic vibe. The gratuitous violence, the great costumes, and the overall fun atmosphere combine to make a Deadpool-esque comedy action movie.
One criticism that I agree with concerning the movie is the rating. A review by Forbes sums it up when it says “most of the R-rated stuff is completely unnecessary.” The scene that bothered me the most was the unnecessary sexual assault scene in the club that I assume was only put in to make us hate Roman more. Other than just making the audience viscerally uncomfortable, the scene doesn’t add much to the film and my opinions towards the privileged rich guy who skins people were already pretty negative.
The movie isn’t perfect, but it’s pretty good and has a more lighthearted, playful vibe that differentiates it from other DC movies. Along with this action-packed film is an equally high-energy soundtrack including artists like Doja Cat, Megan Thee Stallion, Halsey and more.
It’s a great movie to go to with friends and just watch something exciting and engaging for an hour and a half.