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The Killing Grin is a 2022 American action thriller film, directed by David Gordon Green and with a script written by Rian Johnson and Produced by Sam Raimi. Not cannon in the DCEU. The film is also the second installment in the DCDU and it is based of the short film made by UnboundVisuals in 2016. 6 Years after her parents, Jamie Grey is left broken and alone in the most crime ridden city in the world with only her dad's good luck charm and a mind full of vengeance, Jamie must find her voice and decide to stand up for what's right after her childhood tormentor returns to finish her off once and for all. The film stars an ensemble cast including Betty Gilpin, Kaya Scodelario, Dylan Minnette, Elisabeth Moss, Lupita Nyong'o, Bruce Campbell, Neve Campbell, and Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn.

Development on the film began in September 2016, when David Gordon Green announced that he would direct the film and handed script duties to Rian Johnson, leaving Sam Raimi to produce the film. On the same day, it was announced that shooting would take place in New York City, Jersey City, and Newark from October 2016 to July 2020.

The Killing Grin was widely anticipated, and Warner Bros. backed the film with Dc Films largest marketing campaign. The film premiered at the 79th Venice Film Festival on February 9, 2022, and was theatrically released in the United States on April 24, 2022. The film received critical acclaim, with much praise for its screenplay, direction, acting (particularly that of Scodelario, Gilpin, and Robbie), action sequences, emotional depth, Tone, and departure from traditional DC films. It became one of the best DC reviewed films in recent years. with many critics regarding it as one of the greatest DC films ever made, and it was selected by the National Board of Review as one of the top five films of 2022.

Cast

Kaya Scodelario as Jamie Grey - The daughter of Henry and Tina Grey who were murdered by Harley Quinn 6 years ago. And after a new string of murders start to appear. She decides to take action into her own hands and stand up to what's right for Gotham.

Sharni Vinson as Monica Davis - A widowed single mother who lives in the building with her son Justin and everyone else. She will stop at nothing to protect her son from death. Even kill others. Although she befriends Jamie in the end of the film.

Betty Gilpin in as Detective Missy Johnson - a police detective investigating Harley's murder strings who is the partner of Lee Thomas who decides to help out Jamie early in the film to try not to make Gotham a better place but to also prove herself more.

Bruce Campbell as Detective Lee Thomas - A police detective investigating Harley's murder strings and lives next door to Jamie who he decides to help later in the film after relating with her and what she went through as a kid.

Neve Campbell as Detective Jenn Thomas - Another detective of the GCPD who is also the wife of Lee Thomas who joins the GCPD so that she could protect her husband and try to reconnect with him more after he filed a divorce contract against her.

Elisabeth Moss as Julie Moore - One of the many residents in the building who had her entire family killed when she was just 12 and has been running from death ever since.

Dylan Minnette as Mitchell Grey - the son of Henry and Tina Grey who both were murdered 6 years ago and has been trying to cut ties with his sister ever since. But he learns in the end that you can never be strong alone.

Lupita Nyong'o as Officer Nikki Lynn - A police officer o GCPD who is investigating the new murders after being traumatized by her daughter's murder.

China Anne McClain as Alice Lynn - A crime photographer who gets killed by Harley Quinn in the opening credits after getting spotted at her co-worker's party.

Imogen Poots as Andrea Madison - Jamie's best friend who decided to become friends with her after being heartbroken after hearing what Jamie went through as a Kid.

Jamie Lee Curtis as Detective Hailey Madison - Andrea's mother who works with the GCPD detective trio (Lee, Jenn, Missy) to solve the Harley Quinn killings.

Oliver Stark as Luke Roberts - The foster father taking care of Jasmine and Mitchell after their parents are killed in the opening credits. He tries to bond with them and overall wants to be a good father.

Levi Miller as Justin Davis - The son of Monica Davis. Justin is also friends with Andrea and Jamie after hearing what they went through in their childhood.

Margot Robbie as Harley Quinn - A former-certified psychiatrist, who became a crazed criminal and the Joker's accomplice/girlfriend, and later a part of the Suicide Squad. She has since cut ties with the Joker after the pair broke up. She is brutal, ruthless, peppy and fun the way you all know and loves with a few twists. She has her own motives and her own drive and nobody knows what she is going to do next.

Production

In February 2020, it was announced that David Gordon Green would direct and write the script for a DC slasher film through Warner Bros. alongside producer Sam Raimi.

Two months later, it was announced that Kaya Scodelario, Sharni Vinson, Bruce Campbell, Elisabeth Moss, Neve Campbell, Betty Gilpin, and Margot Robbie were cast as starring roles. Also that month, Lupita Nyong'o, and Jamie Lee Curtis was added to the cast.

The film's production began in late-October 2016 in New York City, Jersey City, and Newark and went on for 4 years and concluded on July 15, 2020.

Release

The film was released by Warner Bros. in the United States on April 24, 2022, in 2D, Real D 3D, 4DX and IMAX 3D. The film held its world premiere in Beijing on April 20, 2022. In the United States, the film opened to 6,839 theaters in its widest release. The Killing Grin was shown in cinemas for 189 days (27 weeks).

Reception

Box Office

The Killing Grin Was a Box office hit. Grossing $531 million in the United States and Canada and $401 million in other territories for a worldwide gross of $932 million against a $366 million budget. Becoming the 15th highest-grossing superhero film of all time. And the 2nd highest grossing R rated film. 

Critical Reception

On Rotten Tomatoes the film holds an approval rating of 100% based on 654 reviews, with an average rating of 9.4/10 on IMDB, and a 5/5 on Common Sense Media. On Rotten Tomatoes, the critic's consensus reads "The Killing Grin tells a relatable and powerful story with a badass ensemble cast but still keeps all the fresh blood and guts that will keep this movie a memorable achievement for hardcore DC fans." On Metacritic, the film has an average of 95 out of 100, based on 145 critics, indicating "Universal Acclaim". Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "A+" on an A+ to F scale, while PostTrak reported filmgoers gave it a 96% overall positive score.

Rating

Rated R for "strong bloody violence and gore throughout, drug and alcohol material, and language including sexual references throughout, all involving tweens"

Trivia

  • The film was shot in Newark, New Jersey, the same location that Joker (2019) was filmed in
  • The film was inspired by the film Logan (2017) and how its amazing storytelling with memorable characters can be translated into the film.
  • The film broke Braindead's record for most blood used in a film; over 678 liters of blood was used for all of the film's production phases
  • Warner Bros. is planning to start a seperate DC universe starting with the success of Joker (2019) and The Killing Grin (2022) entitled the "DC Dark Universe".
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