Wonder Woman, what a Gal.
Wonder Woman is the newest film in the DC Cinematic Universe, and if you were expecting it to be a colossal turd like Batman v. Superman and Suicide Squad , prepare to be happily disappointed. Director Patty Jenkins does a phenomenal job in combining superhero fanfare with the grimy hopelessness of WWI. Wonder Woman is the remedy DC needed, and it tastes oh so good.
When you actually care about the characters in a story, you start to get invested in what happens. Chris Pine and Gal Gadot put the entire film on their backs and carry our interest to the finish line. Diana’s (Gadot) constant naivete and altruism plays off Steve’s (Pine) dour realism so well, and establishes the bleak outlook the world had during the first world war. It’s refreshing to finally see a superhero INSPIRE the other characters in a film, instead of brood around and constantly hallucinate their dead father. We see these characters grow and change throughout the story, pushing each other to succeed in the face of hopelessness. When Wonder Woman puts on the costume and starts kicking ass, it’s not awesome just because she’s punting bad guys through buildings, but because of the reasons she’s punting those bad guys through buildings. Friendship, love, hope, and the belief in humanity help shape this superhero movie to be a head above the crowd.
Despite the heavy themes, and constant threat of mass genocide looming on the horizon, the film is often very silly. Diana says and does a lot of things that are rather outlandish, and hilarious, for a woman in the early 1900’s. There’s constant sexual tension between the two leads that manages to provide humorous relief instead of awkwardness. Even the film’s villains are almost cartoony in their evilness; poisoning people and then maniacally laughing at their sinister deed, it surprisingly works well to lighten the mood on their premeditated murder attempts.
The film does run into its fair share of minor problems though, like the bizarre twist towards the end that feels totally out of place, and honestly doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Mainly because it feels like something you’d see in an Avengers movie as opposed to this film. The movie also loses any sense of its grounded realism that it had built up as the plot progresses into its final act, but luckily the movie doesn’t take itself too seriously anyways so its not too jarring.
Thanks to a great cast, some standout character writing, and a rather inspirational story, Wonder Woman is definitely worth catching in theaters. Even if you feel overdosed on superhero nonsense, this is one that should be worth your time.
Overall Score: 3.5/5 Stars