Last year when Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice hit the silver screens, unexpectedly the biggest takeaway from that too much too soon of a film was the presence of Wonder Woman. She, not only stole the show from under the nose of two of the world's biggest and most known superheroes, Batman and Superman in their own movie, but also gave out a ray of hope to all those DC fans who were disappointed by the turn of events in what was deemed to be the clash of the titans. Anyway the silver lining was the fact that Wonder Woman is gonna return in her own solo outing. And she did! Starring Gal Gadot, Wonder Woman is directed by Patty Jenkins, also stars Chris Pine, Robin Wright,Danny Huston and David Thewlis among others.
What's It About
Wonder Woman takes us through the origin of the Amazonian Princess, Diana or Diana Prince as she is known in a 'Man's World' thanks to Captain Steve Trevor. It all starts when amidst World War 1, Captain Steve Trevor crash lands into the forbidden, 'man less' island of Amazon. It is then when she decides to help Steve pursue his mission against the German army and what has she got in that? She gets to finally face the evil God Of War - Ares, whose stories she has been hearing since her childhood, or that's what she believes. Unaware of her own routes she goes on to the journey and while trying to make the world a better place, and learns a thing or two about her own creation, her roots. But the question arises if Ares really exists? Or was it just a fantasy tale she was told as a child. Is she really an Amazonian or something more? The film answer those questions and how!
Where do I start? First and foremost, it is Gal Gadot. She is the perfect choice to play the godly Diana Prince. Not just because she looks like a Goddess but for the innocence and charm she brings to the character. Mere fact that, in her last outing Wonder Woman was shown to be a fierce, smart and sultry espionage superhero and here she is just an innocent, do gooder Diana, convincing everyone to be both, speaks volume about Gal's unmatched acting talent. The way she portrays the curiosity of child, yet being absolutely unaware of her 'distracting' beauty adds weightage to the narrative. Gal Gadot is indeed 'Wonder' Woman.
Chris Pine as Captain Steve Trevor is a perfect love interest cum war ridden spy who becomes Diana's eyes to the world. Despite being the second lead to main Wonder Woman he stands tall in his role. His is a layered performance of a spy who has a lot in his plate. He has to send the necessary intel to his superior, he has to deal with the amazonians, he has to take care of Diana (even though she is pretty capable of doing that on her own), he has to profess his love for her and he has to save the world in his own way, like what a soldier or spy would do.
Other cast members including Danny Huston, David Thewlis, Elena Anaya, Lucy Davis,Saïd Taghmaoui and Ewen Bremner are first rate.
All the performances would have fallen flat if not for the proper execution by its director. And special mention should be given to Patty Jenkins for that. In her second directorial she showcased what it takes to make a near perfect origin story of a 'female' superhero. We haven't seen many female superhero films, the last one that comes to memory is Halle Berry's horrible turn as Catwoman. She, not only broke that notion but made one of the best DC superhero movies in recent times. Having watched plenty of superhero films in the past, not once did any film rise above its superhero, until Wonder Woman happened. For the first time a film delved deep into the atrocities of the war and how it affects the mortals, those who are not laced with super human abilities and just simply want to mind their own business. We often see in such films that after a huge showdown, how a certain superhero saves the day even if he has destroyed the entire city, but what's important is that the superhero won. Same has been fed to us, so much so that we don't really think or care about the victims of that particular war or a showdown. Also read: Wonder Woman movie review: Critics in the West are raving about Gal Gadot's superhero flick; call it DCEU's best outing
For the first time in a film that particular emotion was shown when the main motive of a superhero was not just to beat the super villain but to also save the people. I don't really discriminate between a male or a female directors, for me as an audience/critic it's just a film and their work is what matters. But I have to say it here that it took a 'female' director to bring out that emotion, that side of a superhero film. Even though the film is based around the era of World War 1, it slyly is an insinuation of current times and makes one think about the evil that is, WAR! Hats Off to Patty Jenkins, can't wait to see more of her future work.
The theme music of Wonder Woman, which was titled, 'Is She With You?' in Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice soundtrack is sure to give you adrenaline rush. The VFX used in the film are not as good as those we've been seeing in recent blockbuster film but are still good enough to not ruin your experience.
Also what works with this one is it didn't diverted its narrative to other films in DC Extended Universe and worked as a standalone. Also read: When Wonder Woman makers made it difficult for Gal Gadot to breathe
The pacing of the film is slow and acts as hindrance at quite a few junctures. Also the reveal of the big bad villain was predictable to say the least and one could see it coming miles ahead.
What To Do
Wonder Woman 'the film' is to DCEU what Wonder Woman 'the superhero' was to Batman and Superman in the climax of Batman v Superman: Dawn Of Justice, 'The Saviour'. The film works for its performances from its lead cast and mainly for the godly Gal Gadot. Hats off to the director Patty Jenkins for showcasing an untapped side to a superhero genre. The film will make you laugh, cheer, excited and will eventually leave a lump in your throat. If not for anything watch it just for Gal Gadot. She indeed is a 'Wonder' Woman. This one just saved the sinking ship of DCEU. Highly recommended!
P.S - There are no mid-credit or post credit scenes.
4 out of 5
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