Review: Wonder Woman (No Spoilers)

By Angel:

Movie Description: “Before she was Wonder Woman she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained warrior. When a pilot crashes and tells of conflict in the outside world, she leaves home to fight a war to end all wars, discovering her full powers and true destiny.”

Experience

Wonder Woman was truly WONDERFUL and I freaking loved it! I could not help smiling throughout the entire movie from the beginning to the end of the credits. Before going in, I was hesitant about this film because I was disappointed with Man Of Steel, Batman v Superman, and Suicide Squad. I was also not impressed at all with Gal Gadot’s performance or presence with her debut in Batman v Superman.

My expectations were blown away with this awesome movie as it gave me this rare sensation of child-like glee and inspiration. My experience felt just like the first time I saw Richard Donner’s Superman The Movie or Sam Rami’s Spider-Man for the first time. Wonder Woman was special and it’s a landmark in cinema as it will encourage studios to create more lead roles for women (it’s about time) as it is the highest grossing film of all time starring a female superhero. Let’s get started!

Story

My attention was immediately hooked with DC’s new introduction to their cinematic universe movies, it was so epic that my jaw dropped. It then fades in on Wonder Woman as she stares at an old photo of her comrades along her side leading the audience to a flashback as the focus of the narrative begins. A period piece set during World War I starring Wonder Woman….TAKE MY MONEY! The story is magical as you join Wonder Woman on her journey starting from childhood as she tries to discover her purpose and embraces the potential of her powers. I completely understood the wants and needs of her character as her main goal was to protect those who could not protect themselves. The way her character evolved, especially through conflict was amazing!

It is also brilliant and important to note that Diana being a woman was never emphasized, which was lovely because she was a positive role model that anyone can identify with. When Steve Trevor is introduced, the obstacles begin and they aren’t only physical threats, they are threats to Diana’s spirit. The main antagonist was great because he reinforces the idea of the world being a dark place like Diana’s mother had warned her about. I was able to empathize with her because there are several defining moments for her character. The majority of the scenes and dialogue gave me CHILLS! “What I do is not up to you.” YES YES YES!

Performances

Christopher Reeves is to Superman as Gal Gadot is to Wonder Woman. Gal IS Wonder Woman because she perfectly embodied everything that Wonder Woman represents; leadership, courage, strength, warrior, intelligence, hope, love, etc! Honestly, name any positive adjective you can think of and that’s what she carried anytime she was on screen. When she needed to be vulnerable, I felt the pain in her voice, her mind, and her body language.

Gal’s performance increased exponentially from Batman V Superman and that’s what makes Patty Jenkins a fantastic director, she got the best performance out of this model turned actress. I was so compelled with Wonder Woman that I wanted to buy the boots, the tiara, the gauntlets, and just the entire costume. I’ve always wanted to see a live action movie ever since I fell in love with the character growing up watching the Justice League animated show and SHE NAILED IT!!!

Chris Pine is arguably at his best here. It astonishes me that I connected with his character more than I have with Henry Cavill’s Superman or Ben Affleck’s Batman. The chemistry he created with Wonder Woman and his character Steve Trevor was impeccable. He shines in this role as he seamlessly delivers laughs, romance, and enough action tactics. He made me believe again that a man can fly. “I can save today. You can save the world.”

Everyone else did an outstanding job as I completely believed they were their characters. The commitment and passion to source material like this means so much to me because inspiring characters presented on a grand scale filled with great performances has the potential to move viewers.

Cinematography

To me, great cinematography is when the visuals are contributing to the storytelling. A film should SHOW us what’s going on rather than tell us. When it comes to analyzing cinematography, simply, I ask myself, “Was this film nice to look at?” Then I can choose to get in depth and look for whether colors were symbolic, placement of characters in the frame, composition, lighting, shadows, and point of view.

Was Wonder Woman a nice film to look at…ABSOLUTELY! This was a beautiful looking movie as the vivid colors and scenery reflected the compassionate heart of Wonder Woman. Not every single superhero movie that tries to be groundbreaking has to look grounded or gritty. A great movie, regardless of genre, should establish the right look with the right tone with the right story.

Just because The Dark Knight was a masterpiece, it doesn’t mean copying that direction and making our inspiring heroes “gritty” or “darker” will always work. Impressive contrasts between the coloring and atmosphere of Themyscira, London, and the war front were all used in ways to serve the narrative. Wonder Woman looked and felt like the superhero movie we and she deserved!

Music

In Batman v Superman, Wonder Woman’s theme song was lame to me because it did not fit the tone at all. Just like her character, it was just inserted and music should be able to serve the narrative as well. In her standalone debut, it was used during the perfect times and associated itself with uplifting moments, which gave me goosebumps.

Themes

I loved, loved, and loved the positive messages this movie promotes. The main themes I took away from Wonder Woman are identity, belief, and love. “It’s not about deserve, it’s about what you believe.” Wonder Woman leaves her home to discover the world and how she can best embrace her power for the greater good. “Who will I be if I stay.” She knows her obligation, but the lesson is WHY she dedicates herself to that obligation. Love is the true weapon that can conquer any hate.

Overall

I’ve been waiting for a Wonder Woman my whole life and this was worth the wait. I loved the story, characters, performances, music, and cinematography. The CGI could have been better, but it was still good enough. Wonder Woman is an instant classic in the genre and revolutionary for the industry. My rating for this film is 9/10!

Grade: A

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