DC Comics and Warner Brothers brings Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) back to the screen in Birds of Prey, the latest blu-ray/DVD release in the DC universe. And I won’t lie, I was pleasantly surprised by how much fun I had with this one.
It’s quite amazing to see how far the character has come and how deeply ingrained she has become in the Batman mythos since her introduction in Batman: The Animated Series. That being said, I wasn’t super wowed by how some of the characters histories and arcs were changed, merely to make them fit into the story. But the sheer fun of the film won me over, despite it’s uneven balance.
Robbie’s character breaks the fourth wall constantly, and fills the film with narration, that embraces it’s R-Rating. And let’s be honest, the criminal world of Gotham, not to mention the entire DC universe, with its actions definitely deserves that kind of rating.
Both Robbie, and Ewan McGregor who plays the film’s main villain, Roman Sionis delight in chewing all of the scenery on any set they find themselves in. And consequently, this one isn’t for the kiddies.
While giving a passing nod to the earlier film, Suicide Squad, the film brings in familiar names like the Huntress (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), Dinah Lance aka Black Canary (Jurnee Smollett-Bell) and police detective Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez) who are all in Roman’s sights because of a diamond that a young thief, Cassandra Cain (Ella Jay Basco) has lifted.
What follows is a off-balance, but entertaining film that is probably one of the strongest entries in the DC film universe, simply because it embraces its harder rating, and has fun with it.
The blu-ray comes with a slew of extras, including a feature known as Bird’s Eye View which runs the film with loads of pop-ups, asides, Easter eggs, and behind-the-scenes info, the kind of thing I absolutely delight in.
But wait, there’s more! A gag reel, a profile on McGregor’s character for those unfamiliar with him, a look at production design, and how the film came to be, and a look at how Bruce the Hyena came to be, and was created.
Birds of Prey and The Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn keeps the fun side of DC films alive and shows that their future may in fact be R-Rated, which would be a bold, smart and unique choice for the studio (and would definitely allow for them to come at their cinematic universe in a different way than then MCU).
And honestly, I would like to see these characters together again, because they are a fun combo, and Black Canary always kicks ass.
Birds of Prey is available on blu-ray and DVD from Warner Brothers today.