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Birds of Prey Review

16 Feb 2020 18:11 #66818 by jdrock24
Birds of Prey Review was created by jdrock24
I took my 14 year old daughter to see Birds of Prey last night and my initial review is "MEH".

The first third to half of the movie is almost all back story and honestly, at that point I was thinking it was one of the worst movies I have ever seen. Then the movie gets back on a normal timeline and it gets considerably better. The action scenes, specifically Harley Quinn's fighting moves, were very well done (IMO of course). HQ and the rest of the BOP do kick alot of ass.

I think the thing that really hurt this movie (I mean box office wise) was it's R rating. I mean, there was a curse word just about every five seconds. They could have eliminated most of the cussing and one gorey scene of Zsas peeling a guy's face off and easily gotten a PG-13. I'm sure that would have brought in more families and teens.

I know there was some fear that this movie was too "woke" and "agenda driven" but I didn't notice a whole lot of that. I can see how one could interpret Zasz and Black Mask as homosexuals but they never come right out and say it. There was a bit of "all men are bad" but not as much as I feared. Renee Montoya is a lesbian but is betrayed by her ex so I guess it's nice to know that even gay relationships can be toxic.

If I had to do it over again, I would probably not go see it again, especially with my teenage daughter. I liked the action but the story and the needless cursing bring it down.

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16 Feb 2020 22:33 - 16 Feb 2020 23:17 #66820 by ChaozCloud
Replied by ChaozCloud on topic Birds of Prey Review
I didn't enjoy the movie and imo it might actually be the worst of the DCEU movies, even worse than Suicide Squad.

It's not really a BoP movie but more a Harley Quinn movie with a little bit of BoP.
Huntress has like 5 min of screen time total and maybe like 1min of dialogue. Montoya and Black Canary has some more, but they aren't utilized well either. Cassandra Cain goes from bad ass martial artists who can go toe to toe with Batman and Lady Shiva to a pickpocket who needs everyone else to save her all the time. Zsazs and Black Mask doesn't feel threatening at all and more goofy.
Overall none of the characters were interesting.

The comedy didn't work most of the time. The action was decent but nothing spectacular and the plot was dull.

4/10 don't want to watch again.
Last edit: 16 Feb 2020 23:17 by ChaozCloud.

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17 Feb 2020 00:06 #66821 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Birds of Prey Review
I enjoyed the movie.   I didn't notice the first 1/3 being horrible either.  It did pick up once the action started.

There were a few good actions scenes, some were just ok.

I went in forgiving the movie for it's biggest sin. I knew it was really "Harley Quinn" and not "Birds of Prey".  I didn't waste any effort being upset about that.  Hence, the small amounts of Black Canary and Huntress (the _real_ Birds of Prey) didn't bother me.  Honestly, ChaozCloud's review reads to me like he went the other way ... he went in not willing to forgive this first bit, and therefore ever other thing just hit the wrong way.

Black Canary was a really great version of Canary. She's not really Canary from the main run of BoP, she's new, less experienced, and not yet a hero (though her mom was the original canary!). She can fight, but she's not the fighting bad-ass Canary gets to by the end of BoP (or even at it's start).  But she does a good job of it.  I was really impressed with the actress though ... I really hope we get to see her be Canary in some more movies and see her develop!  (Gail Simone is really enamored with her Canary too.)

Huntress wasn't quite any Huntress in the comics, but I enjoyed her all the same.  She's .. .skilled, but more than a little socially maladjusted. (And not in the surly hyper-focused on revenge way she's normally portrayed, though it's not like that element isn't there.)  Which considering her backstory isn't all that out of place.  She gets a few laughs, and I found I enjoyed what they did enough to let it slide.

Casandara Cain is the biggest problem.  The character on screen was fine and fit the movie well, and the actress did a wonderful job .... if the character wasn't named "Cassandra Cain".   The biggest waste is that they should have just given her any other name and saved Cain for later.  There is no light that she was anything like Cain from the comics .... but this is one of those things that I think you have to let slide.  Cain wouldn't have fit this movie.

I maintain, if you go through the dialog and replace "Cassandra Cain" with "Cassandra Blane", the character on screen is great, and worked really well with Harley.  If that's all that I have to do to not be upset with a movie, then it's an organic web shooter from the first Spider-Man movie thing.  Yeah, if pressed I don't like it, but the net effect on the _movie_ and the general truth of the character are minimal.  So, meh.  Cain's one of my favorite characters, and i'm upset I didn't get to see her, but I was NEVER going to see her in this movie anyway. (She didn't fit the plot or style.)

I did find the movie funny and the violence fell into that over the top darkly hilarious genre that makes me cackle.  I think i was in the perfect mood to see this movie and just laugh at how over the top it is.  I honestly don't know what problem people have with the movie.  I had a hella time.  I was in serious need of cutting loose though, so I really swam with the movie.

Harley is the right mix of stupid, intelligent, canny, and inept. It's a hard mix to pull off, but It think they did a pretty good job of it.

And yes, black mask and sasz are over the top -- but it's not like that's too far a stretch as they are portrayed in the serious Batman. If you are going to stick them into a Harley Quinn movie, things are going to go a bit strange.

I found the tone of this movie 100% in line with the best runs of Harley (esp the most recent Palmiotti and Connor run).  Hence me not caring if characters felt threatening ... it's not what Harley Quinn comics go for.  (in the real world, someone would have whacked Black Mask, he was just asking for it.)

The R rating might have hurt this movie, but they were really trying to be true to the source material and go the way of Deadpool.  Harley really _should_ be Rated R.    I find people picking on that odd, no one knocks Deadpool for that.  It's failing for some other (maybe related) reason.  I think it's a mix of hurt fan boys (falsely fearing it might be too 'woke', or fixating on its title, etc), maybe people not wanting to see a Rated R movie staring a Woman.  It's ok for Ryan Reynolds to be Deadpool, but not Robbie be Harley?  Dunno, I just don't think the R rating itself is the problem -- it's other things. That's just the simple thing to point and and blame.  (I know that this goes agains the 'established wisdom" but the wisdom wouldn't have let Deadpool or Logan get made either ..... plus we are all acutely aware of how f'd up the established wisdom was with action/Super-Hero movies staring women was....)

I'm willing to concede that it might not be the best movie (to others), I did have a great time, and will probably go see it again.  (But then I generally enjoy myself in the movies.)

BTW, the animated Harley Quinn on DC streaming is a different Harley, though still pretty fun.  It's filled with profanity, insanity, and is really bloody violent at times.  I didn't want to like it, and in the previews I felt that Kaley Cuoco's voice acting to be ... flat and thought she'd be the weak link.  In the actual show she works well, but Ivy steals the show.  EVERYONE is twisted in this show -- don't go expecting "Batman" and "Commissioner Gordon" to be all normal and serious like.   Gordon is so savaged in the show I can even see people being turned off by what they've done.  But ... honestly it's meant to be that way.  Even Superman isn't "Superman", he's the weird version in this twisted HQ world.  I like the show a lot more than I thought I would.  (I love its Poison Ivy... and I can't wait until S2 when they really do HQ & Ivy).

The last episode has Attack of the 50 ft Poison Ivy.  She even does the pose from the movie poster. ;-)

Anyway, I guess I like this a lot more than others did.  To each their own.

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17 Feb 2020 00:25 #66822 by Markiehoe
Replied by Markiehoe on topic Birds of Prey Review
I have not seen the movie nor do I plan to anytime soon.

The marketing killed any desire for me to watch pretty early on.
Early in production Margot Robbie herself stated the movie was designed to "Avert the Male gaze" and every preproduction photo I saw reinforced that with attractive actresses put in hideous, unrecognizable outfits.
Then...Ewan McGregor about four months ago started his press tour and went on and on about how this movie was going to: "Fight the Patriarchy."

Sounds like, and to paraphrasee Brie Larson: "This movie wasn't made for me."

So I skipped it and so did a lot of other people.
Mostly women and girls who were turned away with the stupid R rating.

Now Sonic the Hedgehog crushed Birds of Prey in its opening weekend.
Those Producers listened to the fans after a disastrous trailer and retooled it and gave the public what they wanted.
I am a man in his 50s and I plan on seeing the movie Tuesday night on discount night where i live.

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17 Feb 2020 01:01 #66823 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Birds of Prey Review
I feel I should say something, but I'll let this pass.

Box office speaks for itself.

Peace.

/K

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17 Feb 2020 07:10 #66826 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Birds of Prey Review

kikass2014 wrote: I feel I should say something, but I'll let this pass.

Box office speaks for itself.

Peace.

/K


The market is never wrong.

I mean, they might be "Wrong" in that they didn't go see Big Lebowski and Firefly got canceled -- but they aren't wrong in that those things failed in the market somehow despite being awesome..

It is undeniable that Birds of Prey isn't finding people and getting them to buy tickets.  (It's also not Big Lebowski or Firefly.)

I find it interesting when a movie generates real hate before it actually comes out.  I mean, I didn't give two shits about Charlie's Angels, I didn't talk about it, and I didn't go see it.  I just didn't care.  I heard people hating on BoP pre-release.  I get a bit of hate about Cassie Cain, honestly it was a stupid move ... but a lot of the hate just seemed ... too early.

That sort of thing fascinates me.   Markiehoe's comments are interesting to me as he's reacting NOT to the movie, but to things people making the movie said.  So not the art, but the artists involved.  And .. he's not wrong.  Even though I purposely do not pay attention to shit like that unless it's so horrible that it starts generating it's own news (I don't go looking for it). I do get it esp since the movie revolves around Robbie and she was an executive producer and set the tone for the movie as well as being the star. We also only have so much time and focus, and we all have to pick where to invest time.  But it's also _not the thing_, and I really prefer to react to the actual art.   I do really get the "meh, I'll wait to see what people actually say after seeing it because I'm guess it's not gonna work for me."  It wouldn't be the first time I've done that.

I'll be interested in hearing what he thinks after he see it and compares it to what he thought he was going to see.   I mean that as an open reaction too, not a judgmental one, we all have our own reactions to things.   Personally, I'm still livid about Fight Club. I remember being totally disinterested in it when it came out ... when I eventually saw it due to a friend forcing me to, I LOVED IT. I was PISSED that a movie that was perfect for me was marketed so badly that I didn't know that I'd even care to look at it further.  I dismissed it out of hand!

So it's not that I'm expecting "I was wrong!" (far from it), I'm just curious about reactions.     I loved reading the other reviews here -- as i'm sure that people actually saw it and are giving honest opinions (not something I expect on Twitter.)

I don't know why people don't care.  Honestly, I liked the Joker, I just don't see how it made $1Billion.  It's a better movie than BoP but it's not _that_ much better.

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17 Feb 2020 11:47 #66828 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Birds of Prey Review

Honestly, I liked the Joker, I just don't see how it made $1Billion.  It's a better movie than BoP but it's not _that_ much better.


Joker succeeded because it was a FAR better film then BOP.  You may not think it was, but a lot of people did.  Hence why it made a billion dollars.

It also didn't treat is target audience like a piece of shit when it was being marketed.  Hence, the general audience, not just comic-book fans (i.e. the core demo for these kinds of films), were intrigued enough to go see it.

The trailers for it showed a great performance by Joaquim, looked well shot, and well written.  BOP, the trailers made it look like a cheap piece of crap.  First with that awful first reveal, with those cheap looking costumes.  Cosplayers put better effort into their costumes.

Then the actual trailers for it came out, and it looked, again, like a piece of shit.  The fights looked uninspired and boring (so much so they had to bring in a man to help sort them out - go girl power).

In addition, the characters looked nothing like their comic-book counterparts.  Huntress, Black Canary and Cassandra Cain were there in name only, and crap looking costumes.  Huntress was hardly in the film at all tbh.

Like Chaos said, Cassandra Cain is well respected martial artist, training with Batman, taking on Lady Shiva, and so on.  This move was like "You know what, lets take that character and turn her into a chubby Asian girl". 

Its diversity bingo casting.  I can just imagine it -


Writer: "I have a white blonde, a brunnette, but hmm, shes also white.  I need a black woman.  Black Canary, that sounds right."

Assistant: "Black Canary is white"

Writer: "SHUT UP!"

Assistant: "Um"

Writer: "Oh, oh and i need an Asian as well, who you got?"

Assistant: "Cassandra Cain.  Shes a tough martial artist, one of the best in the DC universe"

Writer: " Perfect.  Fat Asian girl who is a pickpocket".


I'm sure in some way, making Black Canary ACTUALLY black, is racist, but whatever.  And I don't care what Gail Simone has to say about it, the comic book industry is dead.

They are also, so desperately trying to make Robbie's Harley Quinn into Deadpool.  But that isn't who she is.

So, you have characters who fans of them don't recognize, an inexperianced writer (who doesn't give a fuck about the source material) writing it, and an inexperianced director directoring it.

On top of that, you have the writer blabbing in the marketing how this film is about "misogyny" and "toxic masculinity".  And Ewan Cuckgregor going on and on, about how this is "feminist film", and about how its dealing with the misogyny women face everyday, and bullcrap like that.  This from a piece of shit who left his wife of 20 years and their daughter, for his co-star.

Hate to break it to you, but the majority of the audience for these (comic book) types of films are - shock horror - straight white males.  So when you are talking down to them, insulting them, what do you think they are going to do?  They're not going to buy your product.

This applies to ANY CONSUMER PRODUCT.

The gall of these people on BOP though, is that, somehow, they EXPECT the audience they are insulting, to come and PAY them for their product.

Real life doesn't work like that, and the sooner these weirdos understand that, the better for them it will be.

So, you want to know why BOP is tanking?  It's all of the above.

You may like BOP (and that is totally fine), that doesn't make it a well-made film.

And the box-office is reflecting that.

Just my thoughts.

Peace.

/K

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17 Feb 2020 14:12 #66830 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic Birds of Prey Review
I would suggest, in the future, that we break movie reviews into two categories:

1) Reviews by people who have actually seen the movie

2) Reviews by people who have NOT seen the movie and never will

And we need to come up with a new name for Item #2, given that you can't really 'Review" a movie you haven't seen. But you can legitimately debate the potential thinking of the people who made it, which instead of Review should be labeled: Possible socio/political motivations of the people who made the movie. 

Very different things... and both can be legitimate discussions, but one isn't a "Review".

Shadar

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17 Feb 2020 15:19 #66832 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Birds of Prey Review
I've seen the movie for the record.

Peace.

/K

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17 Feb 2020 15:59 #66833 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Birds of Prey Review

kikass2014 wrote:
It also didn't treat is target audience like a piece of shit when it was being marketed.  Hence, the general audience, not just comic-book fans (i.e. the core demo for these kinds of films), were intrigued enough to go see it.


Man, I love how over the top you are. But then it's not like I'm not either. ;-)

But let's hit that first fiction on its head.

Good sales for a comic book, I mean "holy shit" sales for a comic book are 200k.  A comic only beats that when it's a special issue (#1, Detective Comics 1000, etc).   The top selling normal book ( not a #1, spawn 300, DC 1000) book of 2019 was Spawn 301 with 190k copies sold.  It'll sell more if we could add in Comixology (no one outside the industry actually knows what their sales are, and I've not found any reliable numbers on them, other than being told the profit statements for it "are about the same as print sales").

There are some additional graphic novel sales. But, I think if we're being charitable we're looking at a population of 300-400k.

source:  www.comichron.com/monthlycomicssales/2019.html

And honestly, going down to #60 for Immortal Hulk #16 at 95k copies is more typical -- I think the other higher sales are people speculating (buying multiple copies).  So, instead of 300-400k, we're probably actually looking at 200k people, but hey, let's use 400k.

If all those people bring 2 friends, we have 1.2 million people.  that's going to be a failure.  If you make a movie ONLY for comic book fans, you will fail. If you make a movie that goes out of it's way to make comic book fans happy, but turns off the general movie going public by doing so, you will fail.  Or, rather you better count on a $10-$30M box office.

Now, you can claim if those people see a movie, then they'll tell others and it'll be more people seeing a movie -- and good word of mouth does work, it's just not enough people to make something win using only comic book fans..  It just isn't.

I know this is something that comic book fans hate to hear: but making us happy just doesn't matter.

So I'm going to go out on a big limb here and say this: Marketing to comic book fans had no appreciable effect on Joker's success and it's sales. In fact some of the biggest detractors I can find (and personally know) about the movie are .... long time Joker fans.

In fact the weakest parts of Joker are when they try too hard to tie it to Batman. Really, the peals AGAIN?

Now, there is another side effect.  A comic book is popular because it resonates with people.  If you adapt something, you SHOULD understand why it works. Spider-Man resonates with people,  if you understand why, and bring that to the screen, the movie will resonate with people.  (replace Spider-Man with any other comic/normal book character.)

That doesn't mean you won't change things -- just that the guiding principle should be "understand why a character/story works" then "bring the to the media you are working with".

Now Joker -- they found a bit of joker that really doesn't get play in the comics -- and do a bit of genius in NOT having Batman.  That's what makes the movie actually work.  They found something something that they found interesting, even though it WAS NOT A Joker from the comics.

So, I"m going to flat out reject your premise on the Joker that "core comic book fans" are in any way related to it making $1 Billion.  Now fans of "comic book movies" ( a different group) matter, but they also don't really care about source material adaptions as they largely don't know -- or when the do "know" they are often flat out mistaken.

kikass2014 wrote:
The trailers for it showed a great performance by Joaquim, looked well shot, and well written.  BOP, the trailers made it look like a cheap piece of crap.  First with that awful first reveal, with those cheap looking costumes.  Cosplayers put better effort into their costumes.

Then the actual trailers for it came out, and it looked, again, like a piece of shit.  The fights looked uninspired and boring (so much so they had to bring in a man to help sort them out - go girl power).




THIS.  THIS IS IT. The trailers sucked.

Phoenix was amazing in Joker (as was the cinematography).  And they did make sure the came across in the trailers. They certainly took me from "I absolutely do not want to see this movie" to  "maybe I could see this movie, Damn them!"  And I did actually see it.

The BoP trailers were pretty weak, and really this is where the damage is at.  I couldn't even tell if i'd like it or not from the trailers.  You can't beat people just going "oh whatever", and moving on.  And then it'll be REALLY HARD to change their minds.  Joker's trailer left people open to the idea of seeing the movie and when some word of mouth came around, more people went to go see it. I'm just surprised on how much of that happened.  

kikass2014 wrote: I'm sure in some way, making Black Canary ACTUALLY black, is racist, but whatever.  And I don't care what Gail Simone has to say about it, the comic book industry is dead.



I cut a bunch down, it was long.  Sorry (so people can go read the entire rant if they want, sorry if this offends!)

But I repeat: making the comic book fans happy doesn't really matter. 

I do understand rejecting "an appeal to authority". OTH, if you try to claim that the character in the movie isn't true to a character, and then discount the opinion of one of the most profliic and famous writers of a character -- you should entertain the idea that maybe your conception is wrong.  (re: Simone and Black Canary as she wrote a long running Brids of Prey, it's what actually made her famous after she saved Deadpool at marvel.)

I just don't see "being white" as a primary characteristic next to Canary, and thought the actress did a really great job of being _A_ Black Canary.  So the casting choice alone never bothered me -- and I don't know why that should bother anyone.  Honestly this reads to me like "I'm mad, i didn't like the movie, and I already have a hot button issue so I'm going to push that hot button and keep at it."  ;-)   But I often find (even with myself) that sometimes when I don't like something, I go searching for reasons when in the end the #1 thing wrong is "I just didn't like it".

The biggest problem is they shouldn't have named the character "Cassandra Cain".  But again casandra cain was never going to fit in this Harley Quinn movie so... it's not a loss. People getting their panties in a  bunch over this are thinking about it the wrong way around: we were never ever going to get that Cassandra Cain in this movie, so we didn't get cheated of anything.  You might as well be update that you wished for a pony and didn't get one.

I mean I WANT too see Cain on the screen. But I also want to see her as Batgirl (as she should be).  I mean I love Barbara Gordon, but even if she can walk make her Oracle and give me Cain as Batgirl!

And how can you have a "family wake" thing for Alfred and NOT INVITE CASSANDRA CAIN.  Grr. (Sorry "Death of Pennyworth" comic rant thrown in.)



kikass2014 wrote: They are also, so desperately trying to make Robbie's Harley Quinn into Deadpool.  But that isn't who she is.



No, they aren't.  They're trying to make her into Harley Quinn.  Now, she's strayed a bit from Paul Dini's writing in her Animated batman appearance ... but Deadpool aint' the character that Rob Liefeld made either. (He probably owes more to Simone than Liefeld on his success.)

But she's pretty true to her post-2000 comic appearance and VERY true to her post 52 appearances.  She also follows along with the character she was in Suicide Squad.

And if you made the original Animated Version harley she's still all stuck in the Joker and really that's just so horrible to make. I have no interest in that.    I'm team Harley/Ivy which is the movie they should have made.  Make the movie standalone and just make Gotham Sirens!  It's NOT HARD PEOPLE.  But DC made that call.  No ivy.  No Catwoman... so they shifted to BoP. (more on this later)

And you might have noticed that no movie Batman is the Animated Adventures Batman either.  Synder's Batman in BvS is about as far from that as you can get.

OTH, the HUGE difference between Deadpool and BoP is that Ryan Reynolds worked his ASS off selling that movie. Cute movie trailers, viral marketing movies, posters, appearances, he worked and worked and worked and worked.  And Deadpool really sells the "breaking the fourth wall" bit, so tying that into the marketing was genius.

I think that half the success of Deadpool is simply due to that.  I think the other half is they had a small budget and even that got cut.

 Deadpool 1 with more budget would have only gotten worse, and not better.  I base that on interviews with Reynolds and the director who said they'd have had more pitched gun battles instead of that awesome fight on the bridge (it was cheaper to film and they didn't have the money for anything else).  And they'd have put in this really top notch motorcycle chase .... that would have done nothing to make Deadpool work.  Let's see, let's put the mouthy funny guy on a bike for a long scene where he really can't talk much.  Hmmm...

I think BoP would have been a better movie if they'd have cut the budget down, it would have forced them to think more and make a tighter movie.  (No Gotham Sirens? =>  Cut budget =>  Lower Budget not enough for a "team movie" => make Harley Quinn movie not BoP => better movie.)



kikass2014 wrote: So, you have characters who fans of them don't recognize, an inexperianced writer (who doesn't give a fuck about the source material) writing it, and an inexperianced director directoring it.



If by "fans" you mean "Fans of the animated series" then yeah, you're right.

If you mean "Fans of the comic" -- you're totally wrong on that, Harley was spot on from the Palmiotti/Connor run.  (They're pretty happy with the movie too.)   The current animated Harley is just as foul mouthed and violent, and i'm pretty sure it didn't have any direct connection to the movie (other than high level decisions at DC.).  She is sexier though.

Canary is different -- but not too far from "movie adaption of a comic book source" normal.  Huntress was ... not used enough and was 'ok".  Cain is the biggest problem honestly.  And that was idiotic (and yes even Simone says that.)   (i tried to ignore Montoya as I didn't like Perez.)

But none of that really matters if people seeing the movie like the characters on screen.



kikass2014 wrote: On top of that, you have the writer blabbing in the marketing how this film is about "misogyny" and "toxic masculinity".  And Ewan Cuckgregor going on and on, about how this is "feminist film", and about how its dealing with the misogyny women face everyday, and bullcrap like that.  This from a piece of shit who left his wife of 20 years and their daughter, for his co-star.

Hate to break it to you, but the majority of the audience for these (comic book) types of films are - shock horror - straight white males.  So when you are talking down to them, insulting them, what do you think they are going to do?  They're not going to buy your product.

This applies to ANY CONSUMER PRODUCT.



I think you might be overstating the male %.  Even on opening night, Avengers Endgame audience was 57% male.  I looked briefly and tried to find actual demographics, I'm sure I've seen them somewhere.  And I remember them being far more even than I thought (far better than 60/40, when I'd think it'd be 70/30).

But I do get it.  That side marketing stuff does get to some -- I am just confused on who really cares. I mean, I'm a mutant, so I'm going to accept the fact that I'm abnormal in this.  Unless an actor/writer/director does something really horrible, I care more about what was on the screen than what they say in an interview.

I am impressed when I see things like Keanu Reeves training for a John Wick. That dedication shows through.  But I don't know if I've ever gone to see a movie solely because of something like that. I guess I partially went to Atomic Blonde due to that.

But, I'm willing to accept that there is more than a little truth here as I know that I'm strange and weird.



kikass2014 wrote: So, you want to know why BOP is tanking?  It's all of the above.

You may like BOP (and that is totally fine), that doesn't make it a well-made film.

And the box-office is reflecting that.

Just my thoughts.



I think I'll make a districting between "well made film" and 'a film I had a really great time at".  As well as "willing to watch again". I might be willing to watch some scenes of Joker, but ... it's too soon for me to want to watch it again. (that's not a total knock either, I just don't want to see it again.  It'll be awhile for Saving Private Ryan and Schindler's list too)  I might go see BoP in the theaters again.

And I mentioned before a lot of well made films don't do well in the box, like the Big Lebowski -- it's got amazing acting, a kick ass plot, it's funny as fuck, and it's cinematography is amazing too.  but ... it didn't make $1 Billion.  So I'll probably go out on limb and think that for some reason the trailers must of sucked too.  Maybe I'll look them up. Sometimes movies just hit at the wrong time too -- people just aren't in the mood for THAT right now.  I think some of that is ineffable w/o a lot of actual market study (at the time).

Not that it stops people from spouting off.  (Including me.)

I'm not sure I'd say BoP was well made. It needed a bit more love in some of the action scenes (but some of them are pretty good, I remember liking the Police HQ attack stuff), and it needed a bit more ironing out.  but it was never needing to be a much more than it is in the first place.  A few less unforced errors in it's making would have helped it.   And as I said, I think it REALLY needed to be scaled down.  You could have dropped Canary, Huntress and Montoya, swapped out Cain's name, and done pretty well for the movie.  You end up dropping the group fight scene (which is probably the weakest action in the movie).



kikass2014 wrote: Peace.

/K


Indeed. Peace.   For all that I wrote above, I really like reading what you (and others) have said about it.

I do seem to be the only person who actually really enjoyed it, so you can color everything I said with "He's obviously cracked in the head". ;-)  (I did need to cut loose, and I just laughed and cackled a lot and had a great time)
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17 Feb 2020 17:03 #66834 by The Highlander
Replied by The Highlander on topic Birds of Prey Review
Well I saw it on Saturday and though it was very good fun. The story might not have been particularly complicatedbut it was enjoyable and I quite liked the jumping back and forth at the start.
It was interesting to see scenes from a different angle and made sense given
how unreliable and scatterbrained Harley is as a narrator. The action was good especially
the fight in the police station and showed the different fighting styles of the
main characters. Margot Robbie was great as Harley Quinn really getting across just
how crazy she is, and I thought Huntress' lack of social skills (and no-one
knowing her name) was hilarious.  I had never heard of Cassandra Cain or Black Mask beforethis film so to me they were just a pickpocket and a gang boss, both of whom
worked well. I can easily write off Cassandra as just being a random kid who
happens to have the same name as another character without worrying too much
about it. Also I've heard there were problems behind the scenes with Margo not allowed
to use some characters amongst other issues.  Overall though it might not be the best film ever but meand my friends all enjoyed it and all credit to Margot Robbie for getting this
made.
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17 Feb 2020 17:13 - 17 Feb 2020 17:22 #66835 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Birds of Prey Review

Man, I love how over the top you are. But then it's not like I'm not either. 

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Fair play :P 

Tbh, I'm not going to break down each of your points.  Instead I will put it like this.

With all you said about Harley fans, and Gail Simone being happy about Black Canary, and so on, please tell me why Birds of Prey is tanking so hard?

So hard, that WB even changed the title while its out, in an effort to get people to go see it.

They blamed the corona virus for poor sales also.  Even though the film didn't release in China.

So please, explain to me why this film isn't the monster success you think its suppose to be.

I've outlined reasons why its failing as hard as it is.

Over to you Twice :P 

Peace.

/K

P.S.  I feel I have to reiterate this every time, but this is not about whether someone "likes" or "enjoys" a film :)  That is ones personal taste and subjective experience.

You bring up the example of the Big Lebowski not making a billion, even though it was a good movie.  I guarantee you, that film did NOT have the budget of BOP.  The Coen Brothers have always been known as indie filmmakers.  None of their films made anywhere close to a billion.  And heres the kicker, I bet they didn't care at all.  They just wanted to tell stories and look at themes they wanted to explore and tell.  Whats the story of BOP?  What are the themes?  Men bad; Women amazing?
Last edit: 17 Feb 2020 17:22 by kikass2014.
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18 Feb 2020 05:06 #66840 by Jabbrwock
Replied by Jabbrwock on topic Birds of Prey Review
My take on Birds of Prey is that it's not as bad as I expected from the trailers, the completely sociopathic PR from the people making the film, and the pre-release buzz (or anti-buzz in this case). I'm not sure it's physically possible for a movie to be that bad, honestly - all the pre-release expectation setting had to be done by some kind of perverse anti-genius who specializes in driving people away from ever even considering seeing a movie.

That's probably the reason the movie is tanking so hard. Terrible trailers, terrible press releases, and terrible buzz deriving from the above with absolutely no effective efforts made to correct it.

That said, while the movie isn't as bad as I kind of expected, it was still pretty bad. I enjoyed it less than Solo, for reference. The characters I cared about before the movie came out were unrecognizable to me, and the others were not meaningfully developed to the point I could start caring about them. The action scenes were both nonsensical and poorly choreographed. The acting was... adequate, given the script they were stuck with. The plot was insulting, but as a man I went into the movie expecting to be insulted, so nothing I wasn't prepared for.

I didn't leave the theater thinking "Man, I could have spent all this time going to the dentist or something," but I sure didn't think my ticket money was well spent. I kind of knew I was basically throwing it away, beforehand, but I was still hoping for a surprise. Luckily, I went with a friend, so it was part of an evening hanging out instead of the centerpiece of my evening.
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18 Feb 2020 07:25 #66841 by jimbob
Replied by jimbob on topic Birds of Prey Review
The marketing honestly is nothing short of incredible as to how off it is. It's like they're shooting for a demographic that does not exist, or at the very least certainly isn't big enough to carry a movie.

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18 Feb 2020 08:07 - 18 Feb 2020 08:08 #66842 by ChaozCloud
Replied by ChaozCloud on topic Birds of Prey Review
I will agree with TwiceOnThursdays that the Harley Quinn animated show is good.
Last edit: 18 Feb 2020 08:08 by ChaozCloud.
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19 Feb 2020 03:39 #66853 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Birds of Prey Review

kikass2014 wrote:

Man, I love how over the top you are. But then it's not like I'm not either. 

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Fair play :P 

Tbh, I'm not going to break down each of your points.  Instead I will put it like this.

With all you said about Harley fans, and Gail Simone being happy about Black Canary, and so on, please tell me why Birds of Prey is tanking so hard?


This is the $640 M dollar question.

First: please pay attention to the first part of my post. It honestly doesn't matter one whit what comic book fans think or do.  There aren't enough of them to matter.  ;-)

So honestly, I've answered it all.  You're asking the wrong questions. (Or you need to convince me that comic book fans _actually matter_ ... but do so in a way that is more than "well I FEEL like they matter.")

So even if Harley is spot on, and Simone loves the Canary depiction -- no one knows who any of them are and the trailers and other advertising has to convey why someone should care enough to plunk down money for a ticket and see the movie.  I merely mention them as part of discussing the movie (you can't make claims that Harley and Canary are depicted wrong, giving no real evidence when some of the most popular writers of them disagree with you.).  But this has ZERO to do with why it ain't making $$.

So it's pretty simple: the trailers are lackluster, don't convey the movie, and didn't convince anyone to go to see the movie.  And maybe I'm wrong up that comment from actors and making comic nerds mad are what tanked the movie?  No one gives a shit about any of that, because they just don't care.  (* no one meaning "the tens of millions of people who have to go see a movie and have it make $100+M, not that there aren't people who care ... it's just _not enough to matter_.)

It's NOT word of mouth.  Because I saw it opening night to a lack luster crowd.  People didn't go see it from the start.  Worst attended comic book premiere I've ever been too.  Including Fantastic Four.

Some people were complaining about it from the start -- about some things that were not wrong (didn't like costumes, etc, that's a personal take) to things I consider idiotic (complaining about the race of the actress cast as Black Canary w/o actually SEEING her be Black Canary).

BUT, everyone has their own reactions and reasons -- and it summed up to people not going to see it. I just think that those reasons above were in specific, heard in a comic book echo chamber so SEEM far more important to us geeks, and it's not why the general public didn't go see the movie.  They don't even know who Black Canary or Cassandra Cain are!  How would that keep them from seeing the movie?

I also think that Harley is a REALLY popular _Comic Book_ character.  But she's probably only marginally known to the wide public.

So, if you make a movie like that -- you have to WORK to get people in.

Make GoTG? Sure, it worked and the trailers ROCKED and made people WANT to see the movie even though no one had a clue who the people were.

Deadpool. More famous than Harley ... but I bet pretty unknown to most average move goers.  Solution: run a super bad-ass viral campaign.

It's NOT simply that it's Rated R.  Joker, Logan, and Deadpool proved it can work.  But (see above for Deadpool). Logan came off the INCREDIBLY popular Jackman and Stewart playing Wolverine and Prof X AND it had powerful trailers.  People shared them around (I barely saw any sharing of the BoP trailer).  Joker had a amazing acting/look -- and they made trailers that showed it.  I went with a non-comic book friend as he wanted to see it.  No comic book user told him about the movie (not even me).  He was sending ME articles about the movie.

It really feels like BoP never really did the work.  It just expected to make a movie, slap a trailer together, and people would magically show up to see it.

I think this explains it all satisfactorily.

kikass2014 wrote: So hard, that WB even changed the title while its out, in an effort to get people to go see it.




This is evidence that DC still really haven't learned their lessons yet.   They really have to spend more time getting it right BEFORE the movie is made AND nailing the marketing. 

I'm still not sure about the next Wonder Woman movie (esp Kristen Wiig) BUT I've at least heard some positive comments about the trailers.  (Didn't hear any for BoP.)



kikass2014 wrote: They blamed the corona virus for poor sales also.  Even though the film didn't release in China.



I haven't heard this one. This sounds like typical CYA bullshit.



kikass2014 wrote: So please, explain to me why this film isn't the monster success you think its suppose to be.



HEY! I never said it should be a MONSTER success. I simply said:

- I don't get how Joker made $1 Billion.  (I said this in the Joker thread too.)
- I think this movie should have made more.
- I think some of the complaints of people are frankly, bullshit, but then, people are allowed to have their own opinions.  I think you're listening to a very vocal minority talk and assuming that speaks for the general population.
- think most of your reasons it didn't work don't add up and "horrible marketing" explains it quite adequately.
- I think they'd have done better with a smaller budget and therefore having to focus more.

(And you seem to forget that I accept as a given Joker is a _much better movie_.  My quote is "it's not THAT much better.")



kikass2014 wrote: I've outlined reasons why its failing as hard as it is.



And, (as above), I think that:

- it made some comic geeks upset
- men were turned off by actors talking about how woke it was and how it fought the patriarchy (etc)

That those reasons are just poppycock. ;-)  Ain't enough comic geeks to matter, and I don't think most people really care about the later (but I could be wrong).  Hell, I do pay _Some_ attention to articles about movies I intend to see and I didn't know ANY of that.

I know comic geeks don't like to hear that they just don't matter -- but we don't. I mean, we (alone) can't make a movie popular.  Joker DID NOT succeed due to comic geeks.

If you claim it did -- I want to see you do more than assert that statement. (I provided #'s why I don't think they matter.)  Also, I have heard _more than a few_ Joker fans upset (and more than a few that weren't).  So them being upset DID NOT MATTER.  Movie made $1 BILLION. (a fringe SJW crowd was upset too and -- quelle surprise -- that did not matter either as no one cares.)



kikass2014 wrote: P.S.  I feel I have to reiterate this every time, but this is not about whether someone "likes" or "enjoys" a film :)  That is ones personal taste and subjective experience.



I don't know why you feel you have to say it. I said it a few times.  We all know it's true.  I don't feel like my opinion of the movie is being attacked.  Nor do I mean attack other people's reaction to the movie.  ( I hope I'm not coming across like that.)  I AM skeptical about some of your reasons for it's failure.  That's different though.

It's a given that people are not going to see BoP.  They just aren't.

This is merely discussing WHY and that i think some of your reasons don't really hold up.



kikass2014 wrote: You bring up the example of the Big Lebowski not making a billion, even though it was a good movie.  I guarantee you, that film did NOT have the budget of BOP.  The Coen Brothers have always been known as indie filmmakers.  None of their films made anywhere close to a billion.  And heres the kicker, I bet they didn't care at all.  They just wanted to tell stories and look at themes they wanted to explore and tell.  Whats the story of BOP?  What are the themes?  Men bad; Women amazing?


I don't think budget matters. I even made a claim that Deadpool was better (and therefore made more $$) because it's budget was cut.  And that would have been a good thing to BoP to have a smaller budget.

The Coen brother point is nice rabbit hole, and really is othongonal to the rest of this I think. I think most great artists don't care: they make what they want to make and it's better art because of it.

But, I think you missed the point.  Yes, there is point were "box office results" != quality.  We all know this already.  but, as I said, there is a truth to the market.  People not seeing a movie says something that can't be argued with.  But what it doesn't _automatically say_ is "the movie sucked".

Big Lebowski is WILDLY popular and respected now. It wasn't when it was released.

Firefly has a huge following now.  But it got canceled as no one watched it.  People actively avoided it because they  thought it was dumb (I've had this discussion with a few people who are now fans.)

I _purposely_ did not go see Fight club as I saw the ads and thought it was stupid. I was mad when I saw the movie because I was lied to.  I loved the movie.

It's EASY to find films and TVs shows that failed for some reason only to be later really appreciated for what they were. (Note: this probably won't happen for BoP... it's not good enough to make people find it and bring it back.)

I do think that there are a % of people who didn't see the movie because "that's not Black Canary!" or were but-hurt over Cain -- and if they ever do see it sometime they'll probably like it.  But .. .it's not enough to swing the movie to making the money it needed to make.

It needed to convince the general public to see it.

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19 Feb 2020 03:43 #66854 by TwiceOnThursdays
Replied by TwiceOnThursdays on topic Birds of Prey Review

ChaozCloud wrote: I will agree with TwiceOnThursdays that the Harley Quinn animated show is good.


We probably should be talking about it instead.

I mean "Attack of the 50 ft Poison Ivy".

I know that there are few people here that's their thing. ;-)

(it's in the last episode for those that care.)

But if you're but-hurt about depictions of characters you might want to stay away. ;-)

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19 Feb 2020 04:26 #66856 by ChaozCloud
Replied by ChaozCloud on topic Birds of Prey Review

TwiceOnThursdays wrote:

ChaozCloud wrote: I will agree with TwiceOnThursdays that the Harley Quinn animated show is good.


We probably should be talking about it instead.

I mean "Attack of the 50 ft Poison Ivy".

I know that there are few people here that's their thing. ;-)

(it's in the last episode for those that care.)

But if you're but-hurt about depictions of characters you might want to stay away. ;-)


I'm with Dr Psycho when it comes to 50 ft Ivy :p

And Harley Quinn show is IMO heavy satire and thus I don't have any qualms about their depictions, obviously it helps that they are pretty funny like Gordon :D
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19 Feb 2020 13:23 - 19 Feb 2020 13:26 #66858 by kikass2014
Replied by kikass2014 on topic Birds of Prey Review
@ Twice

And, (as above), I think that:

- it made some comic geeks upset
- men were turned off by actors talking about how woke it was and how it fought the patriarchy (etc)

That those reasons are just poppycock. 

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So, to sum up, you think that BOP failed due to lackluster trailers.

So it's pretty simple: the trailers are lackluster, don't convey the movie, and didn't convince anyone to go to see the movie.  And maybe I'm wrong up that comment from actors and making comic nerds mad are what tanked the movie?  No one gives a shit about any of that, because they just don't care.  (* no one meaning "the tens of millions of people who have to go see a movie and have it make $100+M, not that there aren't people who care ... it's just _not enough to matter_.)


I agree, in part, that the trailers were a factor.  And I'm not talking about comic-book fans, I'm talking about the general audience. Though comic-book fans and nerds are a factor, since they are the ones that initially drive the buzz of these films to the general audience, I do agree, they are not a large enough audience to single-handedly make a movie huge box office.

However, I think, and I could be wrong, that you believe that the "normies" (i.e. general public) aren't aware of this "woke" (for simplicity sake) agenda that is in some of the big movies coming out of Hollywood.   This where I believe you are wrong.  They (general audience) are the ones that are becoming MORE aware of it, and the box office is reflecting this.  Charlies Angeles, Terminator: Dark Fate, Rise of Skywalker, and now Birds of Prey (which is actually Birds of Prey in name only if we are being fair), all reflect this change in the general audiences awareness,

The comments from the actors, and writer, DID have an effect.  But you seem to dismiss this as something only "nerds" like us would read about.  This is where I believe we differ.

I haven't heard this one. This sounds like typical CYA bullshit.


I don't know what CYA stands for btw, :)  However, in response:

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-7985461/Coronavirus-destroyed-Margot-Robbies-film-Birds-Prey.html

(a large-ish newspaper from the UK)

https://meaww.com/birds-of-prey-coronavirus-impact-wb-blames-virus-low-opening

This is evidence that DC still really haven't learned their lessons yet.   They really have to spend more time getting it right BEFORE the movie is made AND nailing the marketing. 

I'm still not sure about the next Wonder Woman movie (esp Kristen Wiig) BUT I've at least heard some positive comments about the trailers.  (Didn't hear any for BoP.)


I agree :)  They need to step up their planning more.  WW84 does looks ok imo, but like you, I'm not totally sure how it will go down.  Suffice to say, the trailer was "good" but didn't really show much, or blow me away.

Good discussion :)

Peace.

/K
Last edit: 19 Feb 2020 13:26 by kikass2014.

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19 Feb 2020 14:54 #66860 by jdrock24
Replied by jdrock24 on topic Birds of Prey Review
I agree that the marketing was very poor for this movie. Personally, I only remember running across one trailer (I think that was on Twitter if I remember correctly). If I, a comic book movie fan, don't really know when a CBM is coming out, I have no idea how the general audience is supposed to know.

I do believe that some of the "Woke" comments from the actors and film critics turned people off, especially male comic book fans. It's kind of funny that "Woke twitter" loved this movie and it underperformed (I won't use the term "flopped" because the budget was so low that it will turn a profit) at the box office but hated Joker and it became the most profitable CBM of all time. There's a lesson there that I'm sure the studios' marketing arms are making note of...

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