Hot Takes: Harley Quinn – Birds of Prey

1) Stop what you’re doing — buy a ticket to go see this exhilarating rollercoaster of a movie. It’s not perfect, but it’s the best action movie you’ve seen since…maybe ever?

2) Two — not one but TWO!! — of my favorite fight scenes of all time are in this movie. How. I did not expect to be blown away by the action, mostly because DC movies make everything so gray and dull, but the cinematography and art direction are so top notch. And the fight choreography! Are there awards for that? The fun house fight scene is the most exciting fight scene I think I’ve seen since The Bride sliced up fiddy’lem suited warriors in a Tokyo restaurant.

3) Giving this another bullet, because the fight scene in the jail is the best pairing of action & song that I’ve seen in a long time (I think it was Halsey?!). And it looked so realistic! IDK if any of y’all saw Atomic Blonde, but the behind the scenes making-of clips on YouTube talked about how women-led fight scenes should be choreographed differently, because as a general rule they have less mass and less strength so they’re not going to bludgeon people to death with their fists the same way. There’s a lot of bludgeoning going on in the jail (and throughout) but it really felt like “this is the way a woman (or women) would take on an army of men if she had a steel baseball bat.”

4) Perfectly cast. Everybody hit their beats. Put Rosie Perez in more stuff. Margot Robbie is a star and I will literally watch her in anything. Jurnee Smollett did have a scene that took me straight back to Eve’s Bayou though because her face really hasn’t changed in 20 years.

5) Laxatives work way faster than that.

6) The team up is honestly so much more fulfilling than when we saw all the women in the same shot at the end of Endgame. Birds of Prey gave me the All Female Action Sequence I’ve been dreaming of. Plus, I personally like when multiple storylines converge in one climax, even if it’s mildly predictable.

7) I don’t love Harley Quinn as a character. When she gets smacked for being annoying, I feel that in my soul. My roommates both love the cartoon (whatever cartoon is the newest, idk, I watched like 1.5 episodes) but I just can’t get into her. Margot Robbie made me invested in her as a person about as well as anybody would be able to. I was actively rooting for her the entire time, even when she broke my heart.

8) This is one of the best movie soundtracks of all time. It’s like Waiting To Exhale but for 25-year-olds who put whiskey in a Nalgene bottle and say monogamy is a last resort for ugly people.

SPOILERS (but mild ones, you can read on if you don’t mind at all, the plot won’t be given away here)

9) There’s no way for one woman to get past that many police officers with guns. Why didn’t anyone just shoot her while she was slinging bean bags at everybody?

10) Any woman who has successfully defended herself against GROUPS OF VERY LARGE MEN REPEATEDLY can definitely do better in a fight against a 50 year old drunk lady cop than a particular scene would lead you to believe.

11) WHAT A PERFECT DEATH SCENE! I actually laughed out loud.

Score: 8.5 / 10

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