SPOILERS AHEAD for Birds Of Prey, you’ve been warned!
There’s that moment during the final battle in Endgame where all the female superheroes all team up together to fight against Thanos’ army. This scene – colloquially known as the “she’s got help” moment – might’ve looked great on paper but the result was contrived, out-of-place, and ultimately unearned.
Margot Robbie and the filmmakers behind Birds Of Prey must’ve taking notes on that scene because Harley Quinn’s big team up moment with her fellow ragtag group of female heroes is, in contrast to Endgame, perfectly done.
Speaking of female DC superheroes, the GOAT team talk about Wonder Woman on It’s Been A Big Day For… below:
Margot Robbie and the predominantly female filmmaking team took their time in making Birds Of Prey to be a bold superhero film that focuses on Harley Quinn and her fellow female heroes rather than some usual chiseled-jawed white dude. That alone suggests to some viewers that the movie carries some feminist agenda, which is far from the actual case.
Rather than explicitly lean into a feminist agenda and risk becoming an annoying, virtue signalling movie, Birds Of Prey simply lets things unfold as organically as possible and places its focus on the characters first. If people think there are feminist undertones then so be it, but it’s not the movie’s main intention.
Unlike Endgame, which haphazardly threw together all of the MCU’s female heroes in a manner that desperately screams “we’re totally woke,” Birds Of Prey gives each female hero their time in the spotlight and built up to the big team-up moment.
Harley Quinn, Huntress, Black Canary, Renee Montoya and Cassandra Cain all had their own stories, motivations and agendas throughout Birds Of Prey, which results in various combinations of these characters coming face-to-face over the course of the movie.
By the time all five of them reluctantly team up together at the climax of the film, we understand why it happens, how they all know each other, and how those knuckleheads all got to that point. There ultimately aren’t too many moments where we see the quintet operate as a cohesive “Birds Of Prey” unit, but the time we do get with them is special because it was well earned.
The narrative flow in Birds Of Prey doesn’t quite work in some places and is a bit clumsy in others, but the journey towards the big team-up is conveyed well enough for it to work, which is far more than can be said about Endgame.
What this also means is that all the groundwork has been laid for future Birds Of Prey team-ups – which you know there will be given the positive reception the film has received – and there’s a genuine sense of excitement in seeing Harley Quinn, Huntress, Black Canary, Renee Montoya and Cassandra Cain fighting together again at some point.
It’s clear that DC has found a way to distinguish itself from Marvel’s cinematic offering and that’s helped push the quality benchmark even higher. Maybe it’s time for Marvel to borrow Margot Robbie’s producer notes because Birds Of Prey shows that it is possible to make a movie without any virtue signalling while also managing to bring a group of misfits together without the need for five movies of build-up first.
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