Wonder Woman, DC’s newest addition to its cinematic universe releases officially this week on Friday, June 2nd. Recently there has been a lot of judgment against the DC Cinematic Universe (I’m not innocent of this judgment). For whatever reason, they can’t see to get it right. Despite using formulas that Marvel has been successful with, they seem to lack something. Being a fan of the comic and having recently done a recipe for the release of Wonder Woman on Geeks Who Eat, I was able to attend an advanced screening of the film. I went into this movie with cautious optimism. After all, isn’t it time we get not only a decent comic book movie with a female lead but an actual big screen Wonder Woman Film?
Wonder Woman’s timeline primarily occurs before the events of Batman Vs. Superman. “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.”
First and foremost, Wonder Woman is visually stunning! From the beaches of Themyscira to the trenches of Europe, all of the major scenes evoke a sense of awe. I thought the story was straight forward and unlike Batman Vs. Superman didn’t try to combine too many story arcs. Much like the earlier Marvel films, this movie easily can stand on its own, yet it does tie into the bigger picture. Which is also unlike Batman Vs. Superman, which felt the need to constantly remind us of the upcoming Justice League movie.
One of the most fantastic things about the movie is watching Diana’s growth from an idealistic child to a woman who understands human nature more clearly. I really felt like I connected more with her than other superheroes/heroines. She doesn’t only come in to kick butt and take names, but there is also an emotional development to the character which leads to that greater connection. Speaking of kicking butt, the action sequences in this movie are also quite entertaining and as I mentioned earlier, visually quite fantastic.
Let’s start with the obvious, Gal Gadot. Initially, I was worried that she would be able to hold her own against the more experienced actresses and actors in the film. I am so glad I was wrong. Her portrayal of Diana is spot on. To be honest, I think having someone who isn’t a Hollywood starlet (well she will be after this) helped make her character more believable. You definitely believe Diana’s emotional growth throughout the film.
The supporting cast includes Robin Wright (The Princess Bride), Chris Pine (Star Trek), David Thewlis (Harry Potter), and more. Chris Pine was really good but he does play that same type of character that he usually plays. Not that I mind that and in this situation it really is appropriate. Robin Wright was cast as Diana’s aunt Antiope and is perfect in the role. I can’t think of anyone better suited for the role. All of the villains in the film (well really one and two henchmen) are cast surprisingly well also.
A good movie needs a good soundtrack or score to complete it. Wonder Woman abandons the classic rock trope that seems to be looming around comic book movies (it’s been happening since Iron Man, can we move on?). This left composer Rupert Gregson-Williams an opening to create a fantastic score. The music feels empowering and really sets the tone properly throughout the whole movie. I even heard someone coming out of the theater say that they wanted to add it to their workout playlist. I’d have to agree with this and you can bet it will be getting some major play time.
Overall, Wonder Woman was action packed fun! I will likely be seeing it again and you can bet I will be buying it when it comes out on Blu-ray. I really felt that this movie reinvigorated my love for comic book movies. Not that there haven’t been good ones (I really did enjoy Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2), but this just somehow felt fresh by comparison. Hopefully, we are seeing a new dawn of good movies in the DC Cinematic Universe (I’m looking forward to Aquaman). With that said, Wonder Woman has set the bar pretty high!