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Episode 14 · 2 years ago

BIRDS OF PREY (2020) Discussion

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Parth and Trent talk Birds of Prey.

Edited by Parth Marathe

So part what if you consume? Most recently, I recently had a thin, thin slice of Pumpkin Pie. Oh, is this dessert, for from a dinner or did you have this independently? I had this independently. I went to our previous discussion guests, Sophia's house, and Sophia, but your friend, my friend, and she had her parents had bought a humongous Pumpkin Pie from Costco, of which they'd managed to devour half of. Well, I guess it's from Costco, so naturally I just think this is costco wholesale we're talking about. So, but, like you know, you approximate diameter, like was it a foot and a half? Jeez, ause, I know it's a big it's a big fucking pie and you decided to have just but a thin slice of that. I wasn't that hungry. It's Pumpkin, your favorite kind of Pie. No apple part. Your were burrows of a feather. Apples my favorite. Also Bird. Have you ever feather? Birds of prey seems like a good transition for our movie of the day, birds of weight right. No, you need to what have you eaten? You didn't tell me. I know I wasn't ready to move on. I just had UN Burrito from I sounded exotic. What was that? That French? Let me try, let me, let me translate a Burrito. Oh, okay, I'm in Ogden Utah and I thought I would test out the yeah, the Hispanic cuisine from this region of the country. You just said that with an Italian accent. Okay, ready for the show? Yeah, let's let's cue the intro. Welcome back to craft services, where we talk about movies. Each week we discuss a different film and we hopefully have an interview with crew member of that film to talk with us about their experience. We had Evan Schiff, editor, come in to talk with us about his work on birds of prey. What a delightful man. You should check that episode out. It's our last episode. It's a pretty good one and try and I'm just gonna jump right in and give us anopsis of this movie. That's all right, least do. I've been patiently waiting. After splitting with the joker, Harley Quinn joins superheroes Black Canary, free huntress and a Renee Montoya to save a young girl from an evil crime Lord, also known as the black mask, and they didn't mention the little girl. What's her name? Fuck brain blast, Perth, cassandrew Kane booth. Yep, you got it first try. Well, Trent, do you want to know the budget for this movie? Tell me. Well, I'll have you know it was. It cost it anywhere from eighty two to a hundred million dollars, just somewhere somewhere in that range. Even even those responsible don't really know. I think. I think it's because of tax credits and things like that. So, like I think might have crossed because of aliizing. Advertising isn't included. And don't they say that advertising is like half of the budget? It's a really...

...twice whatever. The if for big blockbuster movie generally, whatever it cost to make is how much it cost to advertise couch in. If that were the case here, which I doubt it was, because there was relatively limited advertising, then that would mean they either barely broke even or lost money. What did what did it what did end up making at the box office? Trent, tell me two hundred and one point nine million dollars from people paying money to see the movie. I think it's worth noting that this was one of the last movies to have a theatrical release before everything Sun Times. Part Fun fact that this was the last movie I saw in theaters. This is the last movie I saw in theaters. Did you see at the are you cinema on records? I did. It's like I did. I saw it with my friend Sophia. Yeah, I know your friend. Yeah, part of we so much in common. You also are friends with Sophia, yet we have an equally important relationship to her. Moving on, let's share the production history. Kathy ant the director. She was the first Asian person, the first female Asian person, to direct a superhero film, and then I did. That got me thinking what other Asian people have directed superhero films, and then Angley came to mind, and I'm not sure if there are any other examples, but he'd made the hulk movie right, which everybody loved. Part that's funny say that because it's like kind of universally like just spines. So was that like ironic? Moving on. Okay, the penguin was intended to appear in the script at one point, but was dropped to preserve his GC cindied universe debut in the Batman with Robert Pattinson. Do you know what. That's coming out supposedly October of next year, but I mean, and we'll see, they already had to shut down. They started production like a week ago or two weeks ago and had to shut down because Robert Pattinson got covid. Damn what. How much of the shooting have they completed prior to I'm not a hundred percent sure, but I think something like anywhere between a third and a half. Well, obviously enough to cut together a trailer. Yeah, I think it started in March Ish. So are we know it? Definitely? No, it definitely didn't, because that's when I had down for yeah, no, never mind, but yeah, it's schedule. It's scheduled to come out October, like a Halloween issh release date. Well, anyways, Barbara Gordon, backgirl, a founding member of the team in the comics, was removed from birds of prey due to her upcoming standalone film, which I didn't even know existed until I read this Wi comedia information. But the screenplay is written by the same person who did birth of pray, Christina Hodson Joss Whedon, was originally supposed to do a Batman move or batgirl movie, like right and direct it. Then he bowed out of production and then, I guess, birds of birds of prey got good enough reviews that they put Christina Hodson on it, which I much prefer. cinemotigrapher, Matthew Lit Batique. He did the key, he was the DP for this film and, most notably, he has done every are on Aaron Oski film since one thousand nine hundred and ninety eight, through his through mother, his most recent release, and he also shot Bradley Cooper's directorial debut. Stars born and iron man really like the two thousand and eight one. HMM. Oh well, wikipedia failed to mention that, so blame whoever, whoever wrote the article. Screw you, Mr Wikipedia or Mrs Wikipedia or Miss Wikipedia. Of Apologies. The working title for this film was Fox force five. Do you know where that's from, parth, I'm sure you do yours. Is that a pulp fiction reference? It's a pool fiction reference. Yeah. Do you know the thing...

...about Fox force five? Like being like the like a vague description of kill bill and have people? Yeah, and I know the universe. Yeah, the TCU, the Tarantino Cinematic Universe, Chads, the hull sky of the John Wick fame served as a second unit director for Reshoots, his company eight eleven, having already been involved in the development of the action scenes. More News. Margot Robbie's Harley Quinn will appear in the suicide squad such release in September. Two Thousand and twenty one, directed by James Gunn and I was surprised to find out that a dress Alba and John Cena are in it, and Kathy Yam said that she would be interested and directing a sequel that would explore Harley Quinn's relationship with poison ivy. All of this was surprising to me, especially part. Did you see? The two thousand and sixteen suicide squad fucking sucked. Yep, we'll put but the best part of it was probably Margot Robbie and they really ran with it. YEP, for their cash cow right now, or like. Will Smith was good too, but he, he. I think everybody was well cast. It was just lots of behind the scenes problems. Oh movie. I thought the script wasn't excellent, but are there behind the scenes problems? I don't know about. Basically, Batman versus Superman got a bad rap for being too dark and whatnot. So then they if you look at the first suicide squad trailer, it's a really dark trailer and a the movie was really being rushed into production. David are, the writer director, only had six weeks to write the script. That's madness. Yeah, and then, on top of that, while they were shooting, there is basically a mandate by warner brothers for reshoots to make the movie more funny and more like lighthearted and whatnot. Then they basically had a trailer. There's a there's a trailer of suicide squad with that set to Bohemian rhapsody. That got pretty good reviews, like a good reaction. So Warner Brothers had the normal people editing it and then also hired the trailer company to edit a version of the movie. And then, basically it's some it battled it out and whatnot. So the movie is like a Frankenstein's monster of the original intent, which was already rushed and from studio interference. Yeah, and I mean Warner Brothers wasn't doing like Super Hot. I think they're doing. They're in a much better place right now with their properties. But wait, why? What does come out, since that is boost their more out wonder woman aquaman made a billion dollars. That's absurd. They've got a Batman movie coming out, they've got wonder woman to coming out, they've had Shazam come out. That was what they're doing. Just fine. So now they're doing fine. But yeah, we're brothers behind the Suis guns, suicide squad, the soft yeah, I'll DC. Movies are owned by Warner Brothers. They have the lessons to it. Are Are they going to acknowledge because Marga Robbie's and in this one too, so is. Are they just like, oh, wow, she's in, she's found another group of misfits and they're gonna they're going to battle a large presence and probably when it's I mean, I'm okay with this. It's supposed to be. Each filmmaker gets to do their own movie and the continuity isn't something to really be worried about, which I'm in favor of because I feel like a little it'll lead to more interesting movies. When I saw suicide squad in two thousand and sixteen, as you may remember, the ending scene is like the joker, like busting Harley Quinn out of...

...jail. If my memory doesn't deceive me and I thought that. I thought that them to run and around Gotham cause in trouble would be the spinoff. But jared LETTO was poorly received. So, yeah, I don't I don't think he was invited back. No, he was not all on rotten tomatoes. The film holds an approval rating of seventy eight percent and on Amazon, six percent of the reviews or one stars. That part is called the transition. Let's read some one star reviews. Classic Trent titled Ug Oh Hollywood, Tiss, Tiss, Tisk. Once again lately, that's redundant. Instead of working towards all humans being equal, part this one is about to be political. Brace Yourself. This movie portrays men is idiots and women as superior. I mean, that could be true, but aren't we striving for a quality? Question Mark. Second one another DC flop in parentheses, but in my opinion, joker rocked. Was Really Hoping I'd have something nice to say, but this is one of the worst movies I've seen in my in a very, very long time. Just glad I didn't waste my money and time in theaters. This guy instead bought the DVD and probably paid more for it, but whatever. Chiefly made, poor scripting and doy very can't be sets in costumes. Yeah, I know it's the comics and a style, but seriously, nothing new or nice to say. So I'm going to follow my mom's advice and not say anything mean, even though he just said, like you know, a bunch of means titled Do Not Watch this part. This is I'm excited. You're ready. It's about this person. Feel strongly worst movie I have ever seen. I would rather have the coronavirus then watch this movie. Ouch, Ouch, not a glowing review. Nope. Tell me about your initial feelings on the film. Well, I saw it this again. This is the last movie I saw before theater shut down and I ended up watching it on my own and I really enjoy this movie. I think it's messy in the first half. I agree that on second half is better, but but that seems to be a general consensus with the movie. I think it tries to be a little bit too clever for its own good, but I really enjoy I think it's a solid I think it's it's a really solid directorial effort from Cathy Yan. It's I'm really happy to see a superhero movie where it feels like a filmmaker is behind it. I like the action sequences a lot. There's clearly a lot of effort and care put into them. And Yeah, solid movie, not not not like amazing, Holy Shit, best movie I've ever seen, but I don't think that's a fair thing to put onto that. anyways, yeah, I had a I had a similar reaction. I remember thinking as I was leaving the theater, I was like what like? I'm a content viewer. I paid seven dollars for my ticket and boy, Oh boy, did I get my money's worth. That was that was ninety minutes of of an action movie and I enjoyed it. I agree that it's strengths are in the action sequences, most notably like the the ruler skating car chase and and and the and sequence on the boardwalk and like the the the fight on amusement mile, when when the ladies team up.

But yeah, I mean like to that that sort of brings us with that that goes into production, design and direct directorial, you know, whatever it's. I think it's a goodlooking movie. I think that, again, there's a lot of it feels like there's somebody behind the camera, which with a lot of these superhero movies it kind of feels like they can be on autopilot a little bit, and so I appreciate that there was a lot of care put into the production design, the look of the movie, the way the camera moves, the way that it's edited. It felt very intentional. I agree with you that in watching other superhero or marvel movies, they can often feel kind of like cookie cutter, and in that it's like it's like objectively fine but not really exploratory in any way. And so there's yeah, just like there's no. They're all kind of shot and edited the same way. Yet nothing about them is is experimental. It's a safe bet. It's but yes, I think that this movie took more risks than most, especially in its structure like that. That the a chronological miss and like the Harley Quinn basically narrating like the first half. How did how did you feel about that? By the way, I was fine with it. I found Margot Robbie, I really like. Margot Robbie, is my favorite actress working right now. I mean, I don't disagree. I mean she she holds this movie on on her shoulders, much like she did suicide squad. And I think that she was going to be inseparable from that character of moving forward. Yeah, and I think she's like just on her own, really smart person in the business. She's the one that really pushed for this movie. Yes, she was the produced he pushed. She pushed for it to get an R rating. She you can see, she puts a lot of work into the physical aspects of the characters and I think, I think she's just awesome through through. So I having said that, I thought in suicide squad she was a little annoying, but in this movie they managed to get the balance of annoying versus, you know, kind of heartfelt. Yeah, I think in suicide squad she was just supposed to be like the Zany, sexy crazy one. Yes, yes, she was definitely objectified, but in this movie I think she functions well as the centerpiece surrounded by like other complimentary accessories. Yeah, and I was surprised. I always thought Harley Quinn was a weird person to put as a standalone thing. I mean, I know she has her own comics, but she always felt to me like an extension of miss the jail, like like like a little bit of a side character. But well, I'm happy that she's been being that she's only brought into an existence, as you know, like the why of a main character, making her a side character. Yeah, but I mean, having said that, I think I was proven wrong. I think it's really I think they do some interesting stuff. I really like how much it is about me. It's not like so deep, but it is about getting out of an abusive relationship and I like getting into the emotional head space of Harley Quinn. Yeah, I agree. She's being able to explore the I mean there was really no that. No one was front and center in suicide squad, right. Yeah, no, it was a it was much more of a team movie than this is. This is the first two thirds. This is Harley Qune in the Harley Quinn movie. Yeah, yeah, which is why it was re retitled Harley...

Quinn birds of prey. I also think part of that is that people were going to the theaters and seeing birds of prey and being like no idea what that is, since there's no IP mentioned. And then, but when you go and you see a character from the batsman universe, one a ticket please. Is Dracula watching this movie? Yeah, he yeah, I am the count that's my imitation. I like to count. So tell me what you thought about like the other members of the gang, we got the Black Canary, we've got the huntress, also known as the the Cross Bow Kila, and then you've got Rosie Perez and the COP, and then there's Cassandra Kane, Yep, this small woman, also known as a girl, a child, a child. Yeah, I like all of them, except for the COP. I think she's just kind of boring. Yeah, she's got the by no fault of the actress. I think it's like my job with what she's here on the podcast. We like exactly. Please, come on. She I mean, I like genuinely. I think she does a good job with what she's given. It's just she's not given all that much. It's just not written to be the most interesting thing. I think huntress gets a lot of fun stuff. I think it was wise decision to not make her feel like she's a Badass, to make her sort of insecure a little bit. I like that. Yeah, I agree that her best personality trait is that like she's awesome and like everyone knows it but her, and so she's like super socially awkward and it felt like she was interacting with. I mean it's kind of true, being that her family was, you know, massacred and then she was raised by I don't know, like fucking Ninja's or they were just like assassins, who knows? But he didn't have a lot of girl time. And now seeing her thrown into the deep end of womanhood, it's funny. And Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Ramona Flowers, chef's kiss. Speaking of Mary Elizabeth Winstead, her her partner, Ewan McGregor, plays black mask. Wait, they're they're they're an item. Not only I not only are they an item, the man and wife. They know, not yet at least, but he was. They starred in season three of Fargo and Ewan McGregor was married to a woman, to a woman for like twenty plus years, and then divorced her for Mary Elizabeth winstead, kind of like Noah bomback did with with Jennifer Jason Lee and and in Gret and Greg Orwig A. Having said that, you and McGregor is pretty awesome in this movie as like the worst. Oh, you're saying for playing a bad person. He does it well, yeah, no, I mean, like I I have always loved you and McGregor from Star Wars. He's Obi Wan Goddamn Cannobie, come on, exactly. I mean he's a great actor and everybody knows that, but I've never seen him in anything besides Star Wars. In that he is in a movie called beginners, I believe is the titled Title. He's in a Roman Paul antscreen movie which I haven't seen. Hunch, she's so pretty good. He did some head stuff, just hutchy subject, you say, boy, but Um, yeah, no, I think everybody's well cast in the movie. I think it's a fun movie. Yeah, one of something I was confused about police. So watching the movie this morning and you know...

...the part where Black Canary, she's the singer, she does a scream thing and it's basically revealed she has a super power, and I was like, okay, this is superhero movie, so that's okay. But then I did some thinking. I was like, no one else in this movie has a superpower and everyone shit, I never thought about that. Isn't kind of weird? Yeah, that is kind of where. I never even realized that. So yeah, another thing I noticed was that you know how Gotham is a city. HMM, Gotham city, the white as it's known, the license plates in this movie just like Gotham, and that, well, well, God, Gotham City is within Gom state. Yeah, I'm pretty sure. Okay, fine, yeah, I'll let you have this, or at least I don't know. If I don't know, I know that there's a difference between Gotham and Gotham city as a Batman Fan, but I'm going to sound really stupid if that's not true, but I'm pretty sure it is. But Yeah, oh well, speaking of Gotham city, I really like the way it portrays Gotham city, I think. I think a really cool part of this sort of d what's now become more of a decentralized cinematic universe, is that each filmmaker pretty much gets their own chance to have their own take on the esthetics of everything, and I really enjoyed this one. Yeah, this, this one's really colorful and nice and there's a lot of, you know, colorful characters laying around. This was the black mass first appearance in film and I found it, I don't know, kind of odd, just in the way they like none of the other super villains, I mean the joker, are mentioned when the black mask, for starters, seems to be very off to the side, being that it's taken him this long to even be, you know, included. But I mean I think you and McGrady did a great job, but I think I'm all right with other villains not being mentioned. No, no, no, I was just saying that the black mask as a character, is it, Oh yeah, isn't as interesting as some of some of the other me Batman. Arguably his the best set of super villains. I would say in arguably he has I don't know of any other character who has as many spinoffs for their villains that are all like pretty good. I think the only comparison would be the spider man villains, which you don't have. I just like Spider Man's villains. Spider Man's villains are like generally like assholes. They're just like robbing places, like like Sandman just wants to rob a bank, you know, like. No, I agree that the Batman characters are like, I mean the Batman Universe is is darker, and so they have like more I don't know, like I think they have more interesting motivations and whatnot. I concur, but I think if you go up to people on the street and you ask them to name like Super Villains, some of them would probably be from from spider man. Oh, one hundred, one hundred percent. He's definitely second in line. Yeah, what do you think of the soundtrack? M The only thing that really stuck with me was Baracuta playing during the fight sequence, which I thought was well...

...suited, but most of it was just, I don't know, like remixed versions of popular songs. I found it a little bit much. I felt like there wasn't I don't know whether it was a studio mandated decision to have because they had to sound traveler songs. Yeah, so I don't know if it was a mandate by Warner Brothers to have all those songs in the actual movie or if that was a stylistic choice, but I felt like having every single action sequence being set to a song. Yeah, yeah, it was it. I was just a bit much. Yeah, like it gave me a little bit of a headache in theaters when I watched it all. It was definitely it certainly wasn't understated. No, what do you think of the CGI? Hyaena? Kind of Wonky, but I don't mind it. It's fine. Yourself. You I mean no real complaints here. It's definitely what's the word? It is like kind of makes sense as like a quirky sidekick to Harley Quinn like that, that that fits her character. But it was certainly CGI. And not only do to you know me having eyes, but I don't think Hyaena's have ever been used on a film set. Yeah, there's no other hyenas to my knowledge, but I mean, I think that's pretty much all I have to say about this movie. But what do you think about are you excited to see further adventures of these people? I don't think we'll be hearing from any of the side characters again, even though in the end the only official birds of prey are Rosie Perez, the huntress and the Black Canary. So it's kind of funny. It's kind of ironic that the title doesn't even include the main character. You know, it'd be like if if, in the avengers movie, like iron man wasn't a member of the avengers. Yeah, I guess, thus the rebranding. I'm excited for at least what Marta Robbie has in store, because I love James Gunn and all that he's done. Pretty much so at least Dick directorially. So I'm excited for her in the suicide squad and I hope, I really this movie underperformed, so I don't know what the future is, but I really hope Cathy Yan gets the chance to do another movie because she's really good at directing action sequences and she gets people that like actors that obviously put a lot of their own work into it, and it goes a long way. I think I agree with you on that, especially because my main objection to this film is that I think it's stories spread too thin. Like, yes, I think it could have been like FIF divided a shorter. I think it's divided between too many characters, especially with them trying to give the origin story of the huntress. But it's kind of like a weird imbalance because you're also introducing the Canary and and Rosie Perez and the little girl, but like we're not talking about their background, and so it's like you have different tiers of how much we care about these different characters who are like all considered equals. But that makes me look forward to the potential of a Harley Quinn and poison ivy movie, because one like a like. I mean, Uma Thurman was the...

...last person to play poison ivy and it was, you know, in the Joel Schumacher Batman and Robin and so it was pretty over the top and cartoonish. But I think a, I don't know, a more realistic depiction of that could be interesting, especially because I was reading earlier than how Margar Robbie was talking about how Harley Quinn doesn't function like with a standalone movie and she's best when surrounded by other characters, and I think that that would work best as like a team up movie. You know, yes, one hundred percent I agree. So is it time to slap a label, a rating even? I would say so. You have the floor, sir. I'd give this a seven, point five out of ten. Solid movie. It's it's solid movie. I think, better than average superhero movie, which is why it's not a seven out of ten. And but like it's got a it's got a few it's a little too clunky at the beginning and, like you said, there's there's different sort of tears of how developed certain characters are, but they're all supposed to be the same team, so there's like kind of imbalanced there. But yeah, solid movie. Seven point five out of ten. You want to know somebody, I think it's worth mentioning that we haven't that we've completely ignored. please. The like the animated opening. Oh yeah, I thought that was very suitable for like the genre or not. I liked it. I like to to the tone. Thank you, and like the mood of the film. And I also thought it was a smart way to include the joker, jared Letto. Yeah, and they showed like a classic like he's animated this though, like he's the classic design of the Joker to yes, and also I'm just like so infatuated with like the different character designs of Harley Quinn. I just think she has like some of the the best outfits, like even in the the cartoon opening, how, you know, there's the her original design with like the how do I describe it? Like the elaborate red and black outfit? Yeah, yeah, with like the the Sphas and such, and then, you know, when she's into the police station and she's yeah, yeah, and and she's wearing like the hat and the scarf and and the black jacket, like that is a that's an allusion to an earlier design. And then her like her modern garb, I very much enjoy also, and now she has a new outfit in the suicide squad and it looks really good. Describe it to me. It's like a modernish tactical version of her, like comic or I mean if she came from the animated show. But it's like a modern take on that. But right, she was a comics before she was in the animated show. No, I think you're wrong here, Trent. I'm again going to have to disagree with you. She was created by Paul Deaney and Bruce Tim in Batman, the animated series, and there and then spawned off into her own comic stuff because of the popularity of the character. For Real, I'm not kidding. I did you just read that or or did you just like recite that from...

...memory? Well, I mean I knew that because I'm a big fan of the show, and I mean Batman and spider man are my two favorite superheroes, which is nothing spectacular. But like so I've I I think Batman has the largest amount of good adaptations and all mediums. And Yeah, the animated show top Tier Television and she comes from that. Despite my equal shallowness, I have to agree with you on favorite DC marvel superheroes respectively, despite that being kind of a basic, a basic response. But I will give this movie a seven, just for diversity, largely due to the I mean maybe it deserves higher, because I like actively avoid new marvel releases and I went out of my way to see this one because Margot Robbie joyed me in the seven point five gang. All right, ptarth, you talked me into it. Seven point five. Yeah, I love Margarot Robbie and suicide squad and I'm glad to see that she's carrying the torch even further, being that it seems like she will be continuing the character in one, if not two, movies. So no complaints there. Yeah, so I guess that was it for birds of prey, also known as Harley Quinn and the Fantabilis mancipatition. Well, it's birds of prey or the birds of prey and the fantabulist emancipation of one Harley Quinn or Harley Quinn Colon birds of prey and here on. and which title do you prefer? As I like the first, I just call it birds of prey, being that that is applicable to both, but I love long movie titles. Yeah, it's Corky, it's funny. Sure, tell us, tell us about the next episode. Do you know what next episode? I have some insider information. You are you are a cohostless fucking program parth, you better. Yeah, we have a very special, special episode. We since the release of tenant, we decided we would talk about Christopher Nolan's breakout film, Memento, and with us we got to have the esteemed actor Steven Tobalowski, talk with us. He was he plays Sammy Jenkis in Memento and what a nice man, more importantly, he was. He was really fantastic and I gave some of the craziest stories I've ever heard on this podcast. Yeah, he told not one but two neardeath experience stories. So, yeah, if you want to hear someone talk about how they died almost tune in next week. All right. Well, I guess that's it. See you guys.

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