Grab your popcorn and cuddle up with a hyena, it’s time to join ACMI in Australia’s first Birds of Prey: The Emancipation Of One Fantabulous Harley Quinn watch party with pop culture critic, ACMI writer and Number 1 BOP fan Maria Lewis.
Starring Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn, and brought to life by Robbie’s own production company Lucky Chap Entertainment, BOP is a high octane film of firsts. Not only is it the first big screen all-female superhero team movie, it’s also based on the first all-female superhero comic book team.
BOP’s diverse pool of female talent isn’t just in front of the camera, but behind it as well. Directed by Cathy Yan and written by British-Taiwanese screenwriter Christina Hodson, together they’ve lovingly recreated characters who are dirty, funny and sexy in a way that doesn’t consider the male gaze let alone cater for it.
Roadshow Films announced today they will fast track the in home release dates on some of the most popular cinematic features of 2020, giving people the chance to experience hit movies at home, express from the cinemas.
In these challenging times when cinema goers are required to stay in, Roadshow Films is giving movie lovers across the country the ability to experience some of the biggest cinematic releases in the comfort of their homes.
The films to be released over the next week, include DC Blockbuster BIRDS OF PREY AND THE FANTABULOUS EMANCIPATION OF ONE HARLEY QUINN, Guy Ritchie’s sophisticated action comedy, THE GENTLEMAN, thought-provoking true story JUST MERCY and high-octane Australian family film GO! amongst others.
The compelling slate includes films that were either part way through their theatrical run, or which have recently completed their theatrical run in Australia and New Zealand and are being released express to in home as a temporary measure in response to the COVID-19 crisis and the forced closure of cinemas.
“These are some of our most popular releases of the year and we are pleased to be able to bring them in to Australian homes, express from the cinemas, in these extraordinary times” said Joel Pearlman, CEO Roadshow Films. “Roadshow Films has been entertaining Australians for over 80 years and we remain committed to bringing the best quality local and international entertainment to Australian movie lovers.”
The early release films will be available to buy on digital download from this weekend.
NEW TO OWN RELEASES
THE GOOD LIAR
BIRDS OF PREY & THE FANTABULOUS EMANCIPATION OF ONE HARLEY QUINN
Summary: After splitting with the Joker, Harley Quinn joins superheroes Black Canary, Huntress and Renee Montoya to save a young girl from an evil crime lord.
Australian Cinema Release Date: 6th February 2020
Thailand Cinema Release Date: 6th February 2020
Australian DVD Release Date: Out Now
Country: United States, United Kingdom
Director: Cathy Yan
Screenwriter: Christina Hodson
Cast: Charlene Amoia (Maria Bertinelli), K.K. Barrett (Dr.Aguilar), Ella Jay Basco (Cassandra Cain), Guiesppe Bucaro (Carlos Rossi), David Anthony Buglione (Joe Bertinelli), Robert Cattrini (Stefano Galante), Francois Chhau (Mr. Keo), Dan Cole (Officer Timm), Dana Lee (Doc), Michael Masini (Officer Drago), Miyuki Matsunaga (Mrs. Keo), Lenora May (Mrs. Marcucci), Ewan McGregor (Roman Sionis), Chris Messina (Victor Zsasz), Ella Mika (Young Helena), Anna Mikami (Miss Keo), Ego Mikitas (Don), Anthony Molinari (Mafiosi), Sara Montez (Kathrine), Bojana Novakovic (Erika), Bruno Oliiver (Sal), Rosie Perez (Renee Montoya), Margot Robbie (Harley Quinn), Greica Santo (Crystal), Jurnee Smollett-Bell (Dinah Lance/Black Canary), Steven Williams (Captain Patrick Erickson), Matthew Willig (Happy), Derek Wilson (Tim Evans), Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Helena Bertienlli/The Huntress), Ali Wong (Ellen Yee)
Running Time: 109 mins
Classification: MA15+ (Australia) 18 (Thailand)
OUR BIRDS OF PREY REVIEWS & RATINGS:
Dave Griffiths Review:
Creating a spin-off to the much maligned Suicide Squad film of 2016 was always thwart with danger. Yes the Director’s Cut was ten times better than the theatrical release but sadly after the bad experience of the original not many people wanted to part with hard earned cash to take a chance on the re-working.
Now that Suicide Squad curse seems to be tarnishing Birds Of Prey before it is even released. The film hadn’t even opened before some people were proudly boasting that they were going to give it a big miss. But are the negative comments geared towards the film warranted? I would have to say after sitting down to watch the film – they are not.
Aside from the fact the film features the intelligent but clearly psychopathic Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie – Wolf Of Wall Street) comparing Birds Of Prey to Suicide Squad is like comparing chalk and cheese. Where Suicide Squad revealed a cheesy side Birds Of Prey takes the lead from its DC counterpart Joker and delivers a more hard-edged film complete with adult language and violence that is certainly not suitable for children.
Here we find a Harley Quinn who has settled into her new state of madness. Her world is rocked though when she and Joker go through a bad break-up. Now alone Quinn finds herself unprotected and suddenly even criminal low-life in Gotham wants her dead – led by the vicious and cruel Roman Sionis (Ewan McGregor – Trainspotting). Also attracting the attention of an arrow-for-hire hit-woman (Mary Elizabeth Winstead – 10 Cloverfield Lane) and the down-beaten Detective Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez – Fearless) Quinn soon finds herself needing the protection of the deadly Dinah Lance (Jurnee Smollett-Bell – Underground).
For the most part the film does hold up and is an entertaining action film enhanced by the acting talents of the Oscar nominated Margot Robbie. The film is at its best though when it embraces its hard-edge. Scenes such as the one where Sionis is torturing a family for information is what sets DC apart from Marvel, likewise the early fight scenes involving Quinn and Lance which capture the same violence of John Wick have the audience on the edge of their seat.
Add to the that the suspense of never knowing whether Quinn will keep helping young pick-pocket Cassandra Cain (Ella Jay Basco – Veep) while she is danger or eventually turn her over to claim the bounty, and the genuine comedic moments produced by Quinn’s madness and you are on the way to a pretty decent film.
Despite the moments of true enjoyment throughout the film Birds Of Prey does find a way to trip itself up. Like Suicide Squad there are moments when the film dips into that cheesiness that just doesn’t fit with the rest of the film. You could probably over look it more if it didn’t occur during one of the key fight scenes – what should be one of the most memorable scenes of the entire film becomes laughable as the stars battle it out in an overly choreographed fight sequence that almost feels like it needs the cheesy ‘POW’ and ‘BIFF’ text of the 1960s Batman series to appear after each punch or kick.
It is a shame that scene exists because it seems to stay with you after you leave the cinema and spoils what otherwise would have been a film that may have sparked a lot more interest in what DC plan on doing with these characters down the line. The fact that DC haven’t learnt that it is that kind of cheesiness and the sudden introduction of an influx of characters (as happens here with Huntress) is hard to fathom… especially in the same week they saw Joker score Oscar glory.
To sum up Birds Of Prey is a more than serviceable film. The performances of Margot Robbie and Ewan McGregor do allow the film to occasionally have an edge to it. The events of the film also did make you curious enough to wonder where the storylines involving the actual Birds Of Prey team that form during the film may lead to the future, but the film also dangerously lets itself down with one badly played scene that leaves a bad taste in your mouth. It is obvious what DC needs to do – they need to take stock of people liked about this film and take that on board for all future endeavours or else they are destined to keep making the same mistakes over and over.
Kyle McGrath’s Review
Average Subculture Rating:
Other Subculture Entertainment Birds Of Prey Reviews: N/A
You ever hear the one about the cop, the songbird, the psycho and the mafia princess? “Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn)” is a twisted tale told by Harley herself, as only Harley can tell it. When Gotham’s most nefariously narcissistic villain, Roman Sionis, and his zealous right-hand, Zsasz, put a target on a young girl named Cass, the city is turned upside down looking for her. Harley, Huntress, Black Canary and Renee Montoya’s paths collide, and the unlikely foursome have no choice but to team up to take Roman down.
Directed by Cathy Yan, the film stars Margot Robbie, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Jurnee Smollett-Bell, Rosie Perez, Chris Messina, Ewan McGregor and Ella Jay Basco.
BIRDS OF PREY releases in Australia in theatres on February 6, 2020.
You know that great feeling when you’ve seen a good film and then you sit down and chat to your mate about it? Well that is exactly what Popcorn Conspiracy is. Before they were film journalists Dave Griffiths and Kyle McGrath were just two film lovers that would watch a movie and yack about it, and now they do that, record it, box it up and call it Popcorn Conspiracy. From the latest films at the cinema, to the latest on VOD/DVD/Blu-Ray and sometimes even the odd film they’ve pulled off their shelf for a watch, the boys will always give an entertaining and in-depth look at any film that choose to have a chat about.
You can listen to past episodes of the Popcorn Conspiracy podcast below.
Kyle McGrath is a life-long film and television fan who has an encyclopedic knowledge of films. Kyle loves all kinds of films but is an expert when it comes to cult cinema and action films. He has also worked as a video game reviewer.
Over the years Kyle has had a number of roles in the media world from a production assistant at Melbourne Channel 31 television station and an executive producer on the popular X-Wired television show. Currently he works not only as a film reviewer for Subculture Entertainment but also for The Popcorn Experience podcast. He also writes reviews for HEAVY Mag and hosts a popular video games podcast for them.
Currently Kyle McGrath has 49 Reviews on Subculture Entertainment