Film Review: Wonder Woman

wonder-woman

I’ve heard great things about it. My friend Leon saw it and raved about it for days. I love super powers and powerful women. So Wonder Woman is my cup of tea.

Contains spoilers, duh.

The film opens to the world of the Amazons on the hidden island of Themyscira. As a feminist, it thrills me to see strong women training, fighting, being amazing in their own ways in spite of the “fairer sex” connotations. They are hardcore; they are strong women. Their fight on the beach against the Germans remind me vividly of 300, but damn, the cinematography is amazing. The action sequences leave me on the edge of my seat, the choreography is fluid, the sound effects keep me enthralled. I knew there was going to be someone important dying, either Antiope or Hippolyta, to become the trigger for Diana’s motivation to venturing to the outside world, but it didn’t make it any less sad.

The multiple awesome scenes make this film worth watching by themselves. The Amazons fighting. Diana’s solo storm of the Western Front. Diana kicking everyone’s ass at the military base. Diana fighting Ares. It was pure bad-assery through and through.

The story itself is a tad predictable. The girl is motivated by the loss of a loved one to change the world. She learns the world isn’t as clear-cut as it was in her mind. Secret baddie supports the goodies only to turn the table on them. The apparent Big Bad wasn’t the Big Bad. True Big Bad attempts to recruit innocent girl who realises the goodness in people and stands for what she believes in. I had expected Lupin — I mean, Sir Patrick Morgan/Ares — to be the bad guy.  Ludendorff was too obvious, too focused on the short-term gains, to be the big bad pulling the strings.

The character developments are a bit slow for all of the characters, I feel. Although Diana did progress from a passionate, wide-eyed, innocent girl to a grim, determined, but no-less passionate warrior, and Steve grows to accept her for the amazingly strong person she is and steps back, allowing her to be awesome, it still feels a bit lacklustre. Like how everyone is still dogged in their beliefs despite experiencing the contrary… and their goals remain exactly the same. The overly British British secretary was cringeworthy at best, although the sincerity was endearing, sort of.

I also learned prior to seeing the film that the director was female. It was more obvious in the filming knowing that. There were no gratuitous boobie/butt shots (looking at you, Black Widow and your varying frontal zip). It made fun of that trope by showing Chris Pine almost naked. Diana didn’t need rescuing. She just needed a bit of prep talk and support from time to time. Although Chris Pine was decidedly human and therefore weak against the gods, he had his own moments to save the day by sacrificing himself and blowing up that plane (man, tears poured) and was not a useless sack of meat/damsel-in-distress. Every character had their uses, including Charlie’s singing. Nobody was pure eye candy.

It was fantastic.

I enjoyed it thoroughly and would watch it again. The lines were funny and I had a few laugh out loud moments. The story was enticing. Progression was good. Character development could be better. Gal Gadot was the embodiment of bad-ass, and yet she was allowed her weak moments to be human and have emotions, before those emotions made her stronger. Her companions supported her, did their best, and showed the goodness in people. I would say the baddies could be badder, more terrifying. Lupin’s Magneto transformation was impressive and their fight was so entertaining, but he wasn’t scary.

Verdict: 5/5

Would go back and watch again. And maybe again.

 

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