Writer’s note: This review was written by someone who actually liked “Suicide Squad.” Read at your own risk.
When it comes to superhero movies, a lack of diversity is one of the biggest topics among critics. The effects are good, the writing is often great and the costumes don’t ever disappoint, but the characters themselves face the biggest criticism. Straight, white men receive the bulk of focus in comic movies, and “Birds of Prey” sought to make a movie that challenged that. It delivered.
When “Captain Marvel” came out, it prided itself on following in the steps of “Black Panther,” which had celebrated its uniqueness and diversity within a genre that lacked in both. Many fans were disappointed in “Captain Marvel,” which did not give its watchers even half of the girl-power it promised.
The main character and one brief supporting character were the only female characters, disappointing for a movie that had only one claim to fame: being a comic book movie featuring a woman. The majority of dialogue came from male characters, who often had just as much screen time as Captain Marvel herself and had a lot more to say than her. At the end of the day, it was a good movie but failed to deliver on its only goal.
“Birds of Prey” suffered no such issues. This movie recently came out on streaming services and it is worth any cost to rent. It was gory, it was funny, it had good writing and a villain who deserved everything that came his way. There were no plot twists, no big messages or thought-provoking scenarios.
Five minutes into the movie, one of the main characters came on screen for the first time singing “It’s a Man’s World,” letting anyone watching what they were in for. “Birds of Prey” knew that it was here to feature girl power and patriarchy toppling, and it did just that without taking itself too seriously. The five main characters, not counting the villain, were all women and were all badasses.
It was a comic book movie in the vein of “Deadpool,” overly violent but made strangely humorous. It featured a main character who wasn’t out to do the right thing, even if they did sometimes. Unlike the previous DC movie, critically acclaimed “Joker,” “Birds of Prey” does not aim to unnerve its watchers or teach them anything.
So, if you’re up for some fun and don’t mind people getting hammered (sometimes literally) or getting their faces peeled off, then “Birds of Prey” is the perfect girl-power action movie for you.