Wonder Woman 2017
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(Sep 19, 2017)
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Before she was Wonder Woman, she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained to be an unconquerable warrior. Raised on a sheltered island paradise, when an American pilot crashes on their shores and tells of a massive conflict raging in the outside world, Diana leaves her home, convinced she can stop the threat. Fighting alongside man in a war to end all wars, Diana will discover her full powers…and her true destiny.]]>
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Wonder Woman is a very focused and purposeful superhero movie. There isn't a single scene that feels like filler and you can tell Patty Jenkins knows exactly what kind of story she wants to tell. The film balances action and adventure with social commentary very well and is almost flawlessly executed. The setting in 1918 puts us in a time when women were on the verge of revolution, and the presence of Diana clashing with patriarchal ideals is not only historically logical, but elevates the film to a modern allegory. It's one of those movies that follows superhero tropes and Joseph Campbell's heroes journey, but keep things fresh so it never once feels derivative.
Gal Gadot is absolutely fantastic and gives one of most sincere superhero performances ever captured on film. She is able to communicate her characters thoughts and emotions without words, she has a powerful and commanding presence, she is elegant and intellectual, she is witty and clever. But at this point in her life she is also naive and does not understand the world as much as she thinks she does. You can see a clear distinction between the way she carries herself in Batman V Superman compared to Wonder Woman, further showcasing Gal Gadot's subtle and dedicated performance. In this movie, she is still relatively young and must learn a valuable lessons that mankind can be good and that evil does not come from only one source. A very powerful and inspiring message, especially in these troubled times. It was very smart to not cast an American actress or make Gal change her accent. She is a Greek Goddess and should not be a "girl next door" type. This is one of the most serendipitous casting decisions ever made, she was born to play Wonder Woman.
I am not a big superhero fan, but the second time I saw this movie it effected me just like when I returned to see Star Wars or Lord of the Rings. I found myself tearing up during a few scenes because we have never seen a woman with this kind of power on film before. After her scene in No Man's Land, the audience in my theater clapped and then when the people in the movie clapped for her, the audience clapped AGAIN! Something that just doesn't happen at the movies anymore, unless it's a franchise with 40 years of films like Star Wars. This movie is exactly what modern audiences are looking for and it is 100% satisfying. Wonder Women will go down in history with The Dark Knight and Spider-Man 2 as one of the best and most culturally significant superhero movies ever. This is a game changer for the DCEU because they have now made a film better than EVERY MCU movie. The bar has been raised for all superhero studios.
Wonder Woman is essential viewing for not only superhero fans, but film buffs and fans of the action epic. The first time I saw the movie, I had very few qualms, and most of those are no longer issues to me. All of them were little things like "I wish we could see this", "a little too much CGI at the end". Any and all issues with the film is not the movies problem and is simply a matter of personal taste because it is a near perfect movie. There are no objectively bad executions with the movie like there were with the previous DCEU films. If you don't like it, then that is without a doubt your problem, because as a lover of films and not superheros, it's near perfect film-making and I will not be surprised if this gets nominated for Oscars, it deserves them.
As a man, I am not only proud to have a Wonder Woman to look up to, but proud to see that hollywood has made such a landmark achievement in women's film history.
The storyline in a nutshell: Diana leaves her paradise Island of Themiscyra that is magically hidden from the rest of the world to fight alongside men in a war to end all wars.
Wonder Woman is a movie that everyone can comprehend and accept, which is not brooding and polarizing like other DC movies. Unlike many comic book movies that make the main character one dimensional, I have never seen so many profound aspects in a fictitious superhero movie before. It is a movie beyond woman equality, history, war, ethics and even religion. It’s about honor, duty, good, evil, love and doing what is right.
Wonder Woman is a good mix of action helped by the back drop of The Great War/World War I. It is not just plain adventure but has a narrative focused on the increasingly treacherous world with diminishing tolerance and morality. While I don't consider it good to compare, it was inevitable to see similarities with Captain America: The First Avenger.
This is by far the best DCEU to be made since The Dark Knight. Although I remain loyal to Marvel, I am pleased with DECU’s success with Wonder Woman as it is one of the most well rounded, entertaining superhero movies to date.
This doesn’t just create a good visual. After a three-movie streak of stinkers from DC studios, this moment demonstrates what makes superheroes, something Zack Snyder apparently doesn’t appreciate. Heroes represent, not the recourses we’re willing to live with, as with Snyder's Superman, but the aspirations we pursue, the better angels we hope to achieve. We all hope, faced with the nihilism of the Great War, that we’d overcome bureaucratic inertia and face our enemies head-on.
In some ways, this Wonder Woman, directed by relative novice Patty Jenkins, accords with DC’s recent cinematic outings. Diana’s heroism doesn’t stoop to fighting crime, a reflection of cultural changes since the character debuted in 1941. Ordinary criminals, even organized crime, seem remarkably small beer in today’s world. Crime today is often either penny-ante, like common burglars, or too diffuse to punch, like drug cartels. Like the Snyder-helmed movies, this superhero confronts more systemic problems.
But Snyder misses the point, which Jenkins hits. Where Snyder’s superheroes battle alien invaders, like Superman, or pummel the living daylights out of each other, Wonder Woman faces humanity’s greatest weaknesses. The Great War, one of humanity’s lowest moments, represents a break from war’s previous myths of honor. Rather than marching into battle gloriously, Great War soldiers hunkered in trenches for months, soaked and gangrenous, seldom bathing, eating tinned rations out of their own helmets.
This shift manifests in two ways. First, though Diana speaks eloquently about her desire to stop Ares, the war-god she believes is masquerading as a German general, this story is driven by something more down-to-earth. General Ludendorff’s research battalion has created an unusually powerful form of mustard gas. The very real-world Ludendorff, who popularized the expression “Total War,” here successfully crafts a means to destroy soldiers and civilians alike. He represents humanity’s worst warlike sentiments.
Second, this Wonder Woman doesn’t wear a stars-and-stripes uniform. Comic book writer William Moulton Marston created Wonder Woman as an essentially female version of Superman’s American values, an expression externalized in her clothing. This theme carried over into Lynda Carter’s TV performance. But this Wonder Woman stays strictly in Europe, fights for high-minded Allied values rather than one country, and apparently retires to curatorship at the Louvre. Her values are unyoked to any specific nation.
Recall, Zack Snyder’s Superman learned from his human father to distrust humankind, and became superheroic only when threatened by Kryptonian war criminals. Diana, conversely, learned to fight for high-minded principles—which she learned through myths which, she eventually discovers, are true without being factual. Snyder’s Superman, in fighting General Zod, showed remarkable disregard for bystanders, his film’s most-repeated criticism. But Diana charges into battle specifically to liberate occupied civilians. The pointed contrast probably isn’t accidental.
Unfortunately, Diana learns, war isn’t about individual battles. She liberates a shell-pocked Belgian village, and celebrates by dancing with Steve Trevor in the streets. But General Ludendorff retaliates by testing his extra-powerful chemical weapons on that village. No matter what piteous stories she hears about displaced, starving individuals, ultimately, her enemy isn’t any particular soldier. It’s a system that rewards anyone willing to stoop lower than everyone else, kill more noncombatants, win at any cost.
In a tradition somewhat established by the superhero genre, Diana culminates the movie with a half-fight, half-conversation with her antagonist. Ares offers Diana the opportunity to restore Earth’s pre-lapsarian paradise state by simply scourging the planet of humanity. (Though Greek in language, this movie’s mythology reflects its audience’s Judeo-Christian moral expectations.) Diana responds by… well, spoilers. Rather, let’s say she simply resolves that fighting the corrupt system is finally worthwhile, even knowing she cannot win.
Wonder Woman’s moral mythology resonates with audiences, as Superman’s doesn’t, at least in the Snyderverse, because she expresses hope. Watching Diana, we realize it’s easy to become Ludendorff, wanting to not just beat but obliterate our opponents. Yet we desire to emulate Diana, standing fast against human entropy and embodying our best virtues. Diana is a demigod, we eventually learn, and like all good messiahs, she doesn’t just rule humanity, she models humanity’s truest potential.