“Be careful, Diana. They do not deserve you.”
We REALLY do not deserve Gal Gadot as the race of humans. She’s way too gorgeous for any of us to be very honest. But in all honesty, Wonder Woman IS such a sweet character with the right amount of naivety and optimism that inspires hope in everyone. The film as a whole is an enjoyable thrill ride of just epic fun, and its really all thanks to Patty Jenkins.
Wonder Woman succeeds BECAUSE of Patty Jenkins. Her vision of the film differs drastically from the tone that Zack Snyder has now patented, and with its bright colors, timely jokes and uplifting narrative, it truly does save the DCEU from what was once certain doom. Patty Jenkins’ directing is deft and just simply astute. She looks at what the other films were lacking and added a strong layer of vibrancy and lightheartedness to a franchise seemingly bereft of it. She directs Gadot to a good performance, and enhances everyone around her so that the whole ensemble feels unified. The MVP award truly goes to Patty Jenkins for this one, because she really outdid herself and brought to life a story every superhero fan has been waiting to see for their entire life.
Chris Pine in this movie is AMAZING. As far as supporting characters go this year, he’s definitely top 5 already. Steve Trevor (the character he plays) is so genuine and realistic that we really do believe it’s set in the 1910’s, and that he is madly in love with this woman he just met (but really though who wouldn’t be?). Connie Nielsen and Robin Wright also do fantastic jobs in this movie, even if they aren’t in it as much as I would’ve liked, or as much as I think they should’ve been. Robin Wright in particular has such a stone cold bad-ass expression, and it goes hand-in-hand with her character, as apart from wonder woman she is the most bad-ass character in the film. The other supporting characters like Sami, Charlie and Chief were all really endearing and special in their own way. The most important thing about their characters though is how they interact with one-another and Gadot. She really ties the movie together, and the 5 of them (Steve, Sami, Chief, Charlie, Diana) have some really incredible chemistry. I have praised Gadot from being quite a good through line for the film and really being a unifying force, but some of her delivery was supremely stale and really wooden, which ultimately detracts from an otherwise enchanting performance.
The Villains in the film are a problem. Dr. Poison and Luddendorf (yes I had to lookup his name), were pretty standard evil Germans with no compunction or positive influence, so they did their job alright; however, as the film progresses, they get progressively mundane, and truly they get sidelined in favor of vastly more interesting protagonists. While this isn’t necessarily bad, great villains are a staple in great superhero movies. The ultimate villain in the film is a pretty menacing force though, and the fight in the third act is a pretty emotionally charged engagement, so props for them on that one.
Now to talk about the BEST part of the film: the action sequences. There is an action sequence in this film, that is undoubtedly in the top 5 greatest superhero action sequences of ALL time. In fact I’ll list it for you. 1. Avengers: New York 2. Batman Warehouse scene 3. Civil War: Airport Sequence 4. Logan Forest scene 5. This wonder woman scene. My God is there so much visual candy in this movie. The set-pieces are completely dazzling, and the way they blend ferocity and grace for the character is something I’ve never seen before on screen. Themyscira (the island she comes from) is a really beautiful place, and the cinematography when the story is set there is truly exceptional. I really wish we spent more time there, as I think the most visual appealing scenes took place on that island. The visual effects aren’t perfect though. There are a few scenes where it feels like characters are popping around the place as if they’re action figures being whisked around by human will. Sometimes it feels a bit goofy and gimmicky when the characters jump a large heights because of this.
Wonder Woman is a triumph on nearly all levels. It’s a film reminiscent of Spider-man (2002), Superman (1978) and Captain America: The First Avenger (2011), and it uses its influence from those films to REALLY create something super special that kids of this generation will get to grow up with. Oh, and the wonder woman theme is fricken awesome.
Story telling: 10
Character Development: 10