Tag Archives: Birds of Prey

‘Black Widow’ Is the Greatest Female-Led Superhero Film: Here’s Why

(This is a longread.)

The list of female-led superhero movies isn’t long. There’s Catwoman and Electra, two mid-2000s’ films that featured attractive ladies (Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner) in tight outfits that left mid-riffs and breasts heavily exposed as they fought bad guys. Then there was Wonder Woman, Birds of Prey, and Captain Marvel, three late-2010s’ movies that sought to portray the female comic book character in a way that was both empowering and entertaining. They mostly failed. And last year’s Wonder Woman 1984 was filled with all sorts of pockmarks that led it to have a dismal 5.4/10 rating on IMDb and a Rotten 59% score.

Yes, female-led comic book movies have had more downs than ups. For some reason, writers haven’t been able to separate the woman from the character, resulting in stories that often felt lazily composed or as if the writers were trying too hard to make a statement.

Of these past six female-led comic book movies, Wonder Woman and Captain Marvel stand tall above the rest but even then those films are among the weaker entries of comic book movies in the last decade.

New 'Wonder Woman' trailer, poster show calm before combat - CNET

Wonder Woman had every chance to be a remarkable origin story for the Amazonian warrior and while it has one of the greatest sequences in any comic book film–No Man’s Land–the movie is just a bit mundane.

Gal Gadot knows how to embody that gorgeous Amazonian goddess persona on the big screen and the film’s action sequences are pretty good (they would’ve been better if there was less slow-mo breaking the flow of the fight scenes) but what bugs me is the level of attention on Steve Trevor’s side of the story. He’s such an imposing presence on the movie’s narrative that the film almost should be called Wonder Woman and Steve Trevor.

This is a problem we seem to never have to deal with when male superheroes get their origin stories told. Female characters in those movies are either the doting love interest/damsel in distress or an afterthought to the man’s ascent to superhero awesomeness. But Diana Prince is hampered by Wonder Woman‘s male writers (Zack Snyder, Allen Heinberg, and Jason Fuchs) as they make sure to always have Steve Trevor as her equal in the movie. They even commit to the narrative that Diana discovers her inner power because of Trevor’s death, thus reiterating that narrative that a woman is nothing without a man, a turning point in the story that has grated on my nerves since I saw the film for the first time in theaters four years ago.

Continue reading ‘Black Widow’ Is the Greatest Female-Led Superhero Film: Here’s Why

The Movies of 202o; Ranked from Worst to Best

It’s been a rough year but yes, it’s almost over. I didn’t think that I would see that many movies that year but surprisingly, I’ve seen more than I expected. I’ve seen, in fact, more new films this year than I’ve ever seen; movies like Sunset Boulevard and Seven, The Sound of Music and The Bridge on the River Kwai, A Beautiful Mind and Pan’s Labyrinth, and so much more. As a movie lover, I have delved deep into the throes of Hollywood’s greatest films but I’m straying off course. I’m here to share my ranking of this year’s movies and so, with no further delay, here’s a ranking of the films I’ve seen in 2020.

15. Artemis Fowl

Artemis Fowl' Gets Premiere Date On Disney+ – Deadline

I cannot express to you just how bad this movie is. Artemis Fowl is a beloved children’s book that Disney decided to adapt into a film for Disney+ and the result was astronomically bad.

This movie was so, so very terrible that having never read the book I was still offended. Here’s a suggestion: never watch this movie.

14. The Trial of the Chicago 7

The Trial of the Chicago 7 movie review (2020) | Roger Ebert

The Trial of the Chicago 7 is such a crap fest of a movie. It’s one of those cliche movies with a recognizable cast about an important American event that’s getting Oscar buzz not because it’s actually good but because it’s reflective of the times. I watched this movie all the way through only because I had to write a review. And that was painful.

13. Wonder Woman 1984

Patty Jenkins Compares WW84's Message to Its Predecessor | CBR

Yes, the newest Wonder Woman film has suffered the dreadful sequel curse. Riddled with eye-rollable moments and lackluster action scenes which all culminate into a strange sequel that retains practically none of its predecessor’s charm, Wonder Woman 1984 is a botched film that struggles to convey a message that this movie didn’t need to say.

I wanted to watch Wonder Woman 1984 for escapism, not to be reminded of how messed up this world is.

12. Safety

Trailer For a New Inspirational Disney Sports Movie SAFETY — GeekTyrant

Safety is a cute, inspiring film but it’s ultimately forgettable.

11. Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn

Birds of Prey': Who Are the Birds In Harley Quinn's Upcoming Movie? -  Entertainment

Birds of Prey wasn’t received very well and for good reason. The movie is a bit confusing and muddled in its attempt to be cool and fresh but I find the film somewhat enjoyable, even though I’ve only seen it all the way through once.

10. Project Power

Project Power': Review | Reviews | Screen

Netflix movies can be pretty crappy but Project Power is a surprise hit. It’s a superhero film that feels way more realistic, delivering a powerful story that’s actually pretty fun to watch. Comic book movie alums Jamie Foxx and James Gordon-Levitt are the stars of this Netflix movie and they do a great job. If you’ve got Netflix, check it out. It’s actually pretty good.

9. Enola Holmes

On the Rearranged Sherlockian World of Enola Holmes ‹ CrimeReads

After having just finished the critically-acclaimed series, Sherlock I was really excited to meet Enola Holmes, Sherlock’s super intelligent and super eager for an adventure sister. The Netflix original film is well-made and actually had some nice surprises. It also manages to be feminist without being too on the nose (yes, I’m talking about you Wonder Woman 1984) or detracting from the overall fun of the mystery. Enola Holmes isn’t great but I personally found it more enjoyable than the two Sherlock Holmes movies starring Robert Downey Jr. and Jude Law.

8. Underwater

Underwater review – Kristen Stewart's soggy, silly monster movie | Kristen  Stewart | The Guardian

If you like Alien you’ll like Underwater. This movie starts quickly and it doesn’t stop. Get ready for a suspenseful ride.

7. The Invisible Man

The Invisible Man haunts us the way abusers always have - The Verge

Don’t sleep on The Invisible Man. This horrifying thriller is actually really good. With an on-the-edge-of-your-seat story that continues to surprise along the way, The Invisible Man is a must-watch if you have HBO Max.

6. American Utopia

David Byrne live on Broadway, NYC: Still the best musical experience on the  planet | NME

Earlier this year on HBO Max, a live Broadway production filmed by Spike Lee and helmed by Grammy-winning singer/songwriter David Byrne called American Utopia debuted and I decided to watch it. For nearly two hours I was sucked into a performance that had me dancing and totally immersed. I know David Byrne for his most iconic works as a member of the hit band, Talking Heads, but it was nice to see him as an older man still jamming. Now I’m a David Byrne fan.

5. Clouds

Clouds movie review & film summary (2020) | Roger Ebert

I was not expecting to enjoy this movie as much as I did but Clouds is undoubtedly, next to The Mandalorian and The Clone Wars, the best original piece of content that has come to Disney+ this year. This movie made me cry SOOOO HARD! It was a really headache-induced morning.

4. Da 5 Bloods

Da 5 Bloods movie review & film summary (2020) | Roger Ebert

Da 5 Bloods is a powerful film that has unfortunately not received the praise that it should. This movie surprised me in more ways than one and could very likely end up rewarding the film’s lead, Delroy Lindo, an Oscar nomination/win. No, Da 5 Bloods isn’t the best Spike Lee movie I’ve ever seen but it’s undoubtedly one of the best.

3. Tenet

Tenet: Christopher Nolan Didn't Show Films That Inspired Him to Cast |  IndieWire

Christopher Nolan’s latest endeavor is a mind numbing, mind boggling, ridiculous attempt at trying to be the greatest action movie of all time, resulting in what was instead an inspired fail. Tenet is still one of the most visceral and unforgettable films I have ever laid eyes on but its greatness is just a bit too much. But still, give it a look if you have the chance. It’s worth it.

2. Hamilton

Hamilton is coming to theaters and Disney+, thanks to Disney's endless  hunger for content - The Verge

I never thought I would get the chance to see Hamilton. Disney+ made a dream of mine come true and thankfully, Hamilton lived up to the hype. It was everything I had hoped for and more. The music was scintillating, the performances inspiring, and the story was perfectly told, delivering enough humor, suspense, and drama to refrain from being a bit of a bore. Plus, to see a Broadway musical with a cast so diverse literally brought me to tears.

Hamilton is amazing and if you still haven’t seen it yet I implore you to give it a look. It really is something.

And 1. Soul

Netflix And Movie Trailers Of The Week: Invisible Man, Soul, And More -  CINEMABLEND

I was not expecting Soul to be as good as it was but boy was this film absolutely spectacular. With a story that’ll you have reevaluating your own life and meaning in this world, Soul is a fantastically animated, incredibly moving story that left me not only crying in the end but utterly touched. It’s, in my opinion, the best movie of the year.

So there’s my moving ranking of 2020. What will 2021 bring? Hopefully a better year than this.

What have been your favorite movies of 2020? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a great New Year’s Eve.

‘Birds of Prey’: Awesome Girl Power + Boring Origin Story = Mediocre Movie

First off, DC Comics is desperately trying to forge a path of its own with films that stray from the comic book norm. There was Joker, a film that garnered two Oscar wins and multiple nominations, including Best Picture which was followed closely by the Joker’s wacky girlfriend’s standalone film debut, Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn. Yeah, the name is a bit long and it, like this movie, was a problem because it never tried to just be simple.

harleyquinnsandwich

Harley Quinn, of course, is extra and because of that, her movie is destined to be a bit eccentric, and eccentric it was. There were some fun details like whenever Harley Quinn identified for the viewer a person she’s made really angry. The movie would pause, draw something funny around the guy’s (or lady’s) face, draw their name, and detail the reason why they were Quinn’s enemies. That was hilarious because it kept happening.

What wasn’t fun was how hard this movie was trying to be cool.

I get it. Female comic book characters don’t get a lot of standalone movies so when they do get one you want it to be awesome right? Of course, but so much attention was thrust into the idea for this film to feel like the next greatest thing for women since the Women’s March on Washington in 2017 that it wasn’t allowed time to just be a good comic book movie.

The only great thing about this movie is the bad*** broads that occupy its runtime. Continue reading ‘Birds of Prey’: Awesome Girl Power + Boring Origin Story = Mediocre Movie

‘Birds of Prey’: Awesome Girl Power + Boring Origin Story = Mediocre Movie

First off, DC Comics is desperately trying to forge a path of its own with films that stray from the comic book norm. There was Joker, a film that garnered two Oscar wins and multiple nominations, including Best Picture which was followed closely by the Joker’s wacky girlfriend’s standalone film debut, Birds of Prey and the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn. Yeah, the name is a bit long and it, like this movie, was a problem because it never tried to just be simple.

harleyquinnsandwich

Harley Quinn, of course, is extra and because of that, her movie is destined to be a bit eccentric, and eccentric it was. There were some fun details like whenever Harley Quinn identified for the viewer a person she’s made really angry. The movie would pause, draw something funny around the guy’s (or lady’s) face, draw their name, and detail the reason why they were Quinn’s enemies. That was hilarious because it kept happening.

What wasn’t fun was how hard this movie was trying to be cool.

I get it. Female comic book characters don’t get a lot of standalone movies so when they do get one you want it to be awesome right? Of course, but so much attention was thrust into the idea for this film to feel like the next greatest thing for women since the Women’s March on Washington in 2017 that it wasn’t allowed time to just be a good comic book movie.

The only great thing about this movie is the bad*** broads that occupy its runtime. Continue reading ‘Birds of Prey’: Awesome Girl Power + Boring Origin Story = Mediocre Movie

Margot Robbie Will Play the New Lead in an Upcoming ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Reboot

Since the Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy ended in 2006 Disney has continued to try and find the magic that made those three films accumulate roughly $2.6 billion. In 2011, despite the mediocre response Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides made over a billion dollars (😯) but the fifth movie in the franchise, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell no Tales wouldn’t be so lucky. Despite not performing as well as Disney had hoped on that Memorial Day weekend, it would still go on to gross nearly $800 million! But, judging from the simmering response, it became very clear that fans were tired of the same old-same old.

Jack Sparrow had lost the spark that made him so lovable in the first three Pirates movies, returning in a washed-up performance that felt, ultimately, unenthused.

Each film has managed to make a good chunk of cash but Disney understands that they have another great franchise on their hands if they can simply find the right pirate to helm a much-needed reboot. And it appears that Disney has found their lead.

Oscar-nominated actress Margot Robbie will play the lead in an all-new Pirates of the Caribbean reboot that will feature brand new stories and brand new characters. It will be written by Birds of Prey writer Christina Hodson who will bring to life a new story helmed by a woman who should command the screen simply with her infectious smile.

Margot Robbie has shown that she can play an interesting female character who is all for kicking butt and girl power. I think it’s a great idea for her to fill in the shoes that Johnny Depp has left behind with Jack Sparrow and I believe she would make an excellent lead in a riveting Pirates of the Caribbean reboot.

What do you think about this news? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a spectacular day.

Is the ‘Birds of Prey’ Trailer Worth the Wait?

After Suicide Squad in 2016, it was very clear that fans were delighted by Harley Quinn’s big-screen debut, despite the fact that the film was practically garbage. Now, arriving in 2020, Harley Quinn is returning with a plan to cause chaos and she’s got some girlfriends to join her. Here’s the film’s first teaser trailer.

To be honest, I’m not a fan of this teaser trailer. It’s too much stuff going on and I guess that’s fine, considering that Harley Quinn loves the chaos but it feels like the teaser is focusing too much on Harley Quinn and not enough of the other characters. What I will say was interesting about this trailer was there will be plenty of action in this film. PLENTY of action. Does Ewan Mcgregor convince me as a DC Comics worthy villain? Not really. But then again, the teaser was so chaotic I couldn’t comprehend what his villainous storyline is supposed to be.

Warner Bros. is trying to distance themselves from Marvel by delivering R-rated comic book flicks that truly are trying to widen the comic book envelope but unfortunately, this teaser trailer didn’t excite me. Boo.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a tremendous day.