Colorful, violent, exciting, fun and funny are words you could use to describe Harley Quinn’s recent appearance in Warner Bros. and DC’s latest comic-based film, “Birds of Prey (And the Fantabulous Emancipation of One Harley Quinn).”

Director Cathy Yan, young and little-known, does a tremendous job capturing the comic book feel. Exaggerated scenes, slow motion takes, angles to provide emphasis and the film’s pace and multiple progressive plots feel like a comic book gone straight to action film.

Opening with a short animation of Quinn’s earliest beginnings narrated by Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie) sets the stage with a cartoonish narrative. Quinn chronicles her life up to her dramatic present.

For those who missed “Suicide Squad”, Quinn’s first appearance on the big screen, Quinn was madly in love with The Joker, or Mr. J as she calls him. She was his mistress of distress and he was her “puddin’”. That’s all done now and Quinn has to figure out survival without her mob boss lover. The Joker has thrown her out but she doesn’t at first let go.

The film does well portraying Quinn’s heartbreak with tears, anger, and humor to drown the pain. Quinn’s refusal to move-on is double edged. The Joker kept her protected from those she’s wronged (and there’s a lot) and she’s still wearing her “J” necklace symbolizing their love.

After a night of drinking, in Harley Quinn-fashion, she announces their breakup by creating a grandiose explosion at the ACE chemical plant. She’d proven her love to Mr. J there by immersing herself in chemicals and changing her skin pasty white like his. The plant was their plant.

Following a dramatic firework display and throwing her necklace in the rubble, all of Gotham soon knows she’s no longer Joker’s girl. After spending her last dollar on her favorite egg sandwich, which she attempts so hysterically to spare, she learns just how dead she’s wanted.

After several chase and action scenes Quinn is forced to fly the white flag as Roman Sionis’ (Ewan McGregor) goons surround her. She’s drugged, tied up and her death’s eminent as Sionis sits back with popcorn to watch his men torture; however, she dramatically offers to help find a diamond Sionis is looking for and he cuts her free.

A child pickpocketer, Cassandra Cain (Ella Jay Basco), has stolen the diamond from Sionis’ right-hand-man Victor Zsasz (Chris Messina), and swallowed it. Quinn attempts to retrieve the stone through funny antics before meeting Black Canary (Jurnee Smollett-Bell), The Huntress (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), and Renee Montoya (Rosie Perez), a cop who’s building a case against Sionis.

The group meets ironically through a well-developed whim of events and teams up through sheer necessity. The various plots leading to the meeting are well done and don’t feel at all forced unlike the group setting in “Suicide Squad”.

The characters are each well-developed throughout.

The Huntress’ backstory is great and she’s played well by Winstead as the strong, silent and socially awkward, raised by assassins, type.

Black Canary who served as Sionis’ call girl, singer at his club and driver for a short time is strong, compassionate and plays double-agent for most of the film. You get to know her well, begging for a future backstory.

The cop putting together a case against Sionis, Renee Montoya, is fantastic, devoted and doesn’t take no for an answer.

Margot Robbie is Harley Quinn. Quinn’s erratic, whimsical, violent and silly personality is captured perfectly by the actress. From Robbie’s big bright smile, laugh and features, to her ability to play both violent and sweet then switch to incredible action, Robbie does a fantastical job; her performance is solid. Robbie even performs her own stunts.

Not the most auspicious criminal, actor Ewan McGregor captures Black Mask’s personality perfectly. Black Mask is a misogynistic, arrogant, bully often throwing violent tantrums when things don’t go well. His signature move is cutting the faces off those whom get in his way which we gruesomely witness.

The villain is purely a villain with little backstory and lots of psychotic issues. You won’t be emphasizing with him the way you might other villains, but McGregor does a fine job making an otherwise boring character worth watching as he goes from prancing to raging psychotically on screen.

“Birds of Prey” made $33 million domestically opening weekend which isn’t great for the $84 million budget. Worldwide it has made a total of $81 million which nearly makes its money back. Had the film cut back on freely cursing and curved some strong violence, a PG13 rating may have been beneficial by attracting families.

Though plentiful, the violent scenes probably don’t justify its R rating. The gore might have brought it there; however, fowl language certainly did the job. Few sexually oriented comments and some suggestive images exist but nothing explicit occurs.

The film is certainly not intended for children, but some may not find the strong language enough a deterrent. Beware the gore and sexually suggestive acts, comments, and scenes.

“Birds of Prey” is highly recommended for fans of DC comics or action films with a bit of spaz. The female power-group of anti-villains will leave you highly entertained and wanting more.