Wonder Woman: a movie review

 

I have a confession to make.

I still haven’t watched Batman v. Superman or Suicide Squad. I know those movies have their detractors, and everyone is entitled to their opinion, whether or not I would agree. I did see Man of Steel, and, as I recall, I kind of liked it. Not the way I liked other superhero movies such as, say, Iron Man, Captain America, or the first Avengers. But, even though I favor the Marvel superhero characters, I can’t say that all the MCU movies have been equally good. Okay, all of the Captain Americas have been great, but not all the Iron Man movies or the second Avengers.

I won’t even mention all of the Marvel heroes in movies outside the MCU. At least, I won’t mention them again.

Even as an admitted superhero geek, going to see Wonder Woman in the theater wasn’t high on my to-do list. I would have watched it eventually at home, I’m sure, just as I will the other DC movies I haven’t watched yet. But, left to my own devices today, if I would have bothered to go to the theater at all, I would probably have plunked down the money to see Spider-Man: Homecoming.

I wasn’t left to my own devices, however. My ten-year-old granddaughter wanted me to take her and her grandmother to see Wonder Woman today, even though she had already seen it. It was, she earnestly assured me, literally the best movie in the world today. How could I argue with that? Spider-Man can wait.

I’m not sure if it’s the best movie in the world today. It was the best movie I’ve seen in a while; I’ll go that far. And, while I can’t say it was the best superhero movie I’ve seen to date, I will say that it hit all the right notes and that I enjoyed watching it.

Gal Gadot made a terrific Diana Prince/Wonder Woman. I suppose she also made it easy for reviewers to make the “waiting for Gadot” references. In my heart, my Wonder Woman will always be Lynda Carter, of course, but Gadot was impressive. I liked Wonder Woman imagined as an armored female warrior with shield and sword as well as golden lasso. I was never a regular reader of WW in the comics. Maybe she was always shown this way, but that’s not the way I remember her. I’ve always thought of her as wearing a star-spangled one-piece bathing suit. I like her as a warrior. It made me not miss the invisible jet at all. She still deflected bullets with her bracelets, so I’m satisfied.

Chris Pine was the stalwart leading man Steve Trevor, whom Diana rescued after his plane crashed in the ocean off of Themyscira, the island of the Amazons. He also lead the Germans to their shore, which inspired Diana to join him on the frontlines of World War I (although it was called The Great War or the War to End All Wars then). Diana, though powerful, is still rather naive about the rest of the world. Much of the movie is a stranger-in-a-strange-land plot, with Diana saying and doing things that she shouldn’t because she’s just a babe in the woods. A Zeus-spawned babe, I might add. Steve gathers his motley crew of friends to help them on what’s sure to be a suicide mission, and they rush headlong into the war.

Diana is convinced that she has to kill Ares, the God of War, and then all hostilities cease. The truth is more complicated than that, but it comes as no surprise that the climax of the movie includes a battle between Diana and Ares, and one heroic action by Steve Trevor that I’ll try not to spoil for you.

I liked it. Quite a lot, in fact. It gives me hope for the upcoming Justice League movie. I would like to see it succeed as well. Those of us who like superhero movies are currently blessed with an abundance of choices, and I will continue to support them to keep them coming.

 

 

 

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