Wonder Woman Review

“Wonder Woman” is directed by Patty Jenkins starring Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, David Thewlis, Connie Nielsen, Robin Wright, Danny Huston, and Elena Anaya.  “Wonder Woman” explores the origins of Diana, Princess of the Amazons and a warrior to all-men.  When a World War I pilot crashes onto the island of Themyscira, Diana is taken by the curiosity of the outside world.  She leaves for London with the pilot, Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) to put an official end to The Great War.  But it isn’t a simple fish out of water tale.  Diana must confront her past, her parentage and her lineage in order to become wondrous.

“Wonder Woman” is not just a great superhero movie, it is a great film.  This movie surprised me from start to finish.  There has been a lot of controversy surrounding the DCEU and all their films up to this point.  I have been a fan so far with “Man of Steel” and “Batman v Superman” but wasn’t too keen on “Suicide Squad.”  My love for the superhero genre has been almost exhausted to this point as I feel they are becoming overabundant and over-saturated in the movie market.  So going into “Wonder Woman” I wasn’t sure what to think.  And I absolutely loved this film from start to finish.  The film feels very much like “Captain America” in the period piece setting but director Patty Jenkins gives us a much bigger scope and canvas to look at.  This movie is epic, emotional and hardcore feminism to the degree.

“Wonder Woman” has the epic scope of “Gladiator” but also a “Saving Private Ryan” and “Paths of Glory” feel to it.  The battle sequences are phenomenal and the scene where Wonder Woman charges through the trenches is one of the coolest set pieces that I’ve seen from any superhero movie.  I thought actress Gal Gadot owned this role, a role that she was born to play.  She is sexy while at the same time badass.  Wonder Woman emits a type of sexuality that is unprecedented but also never the damsel in distress.  She is commanding, endearing and beautiful.  Chris Pine was the best that I’ve ever seen him in any film to date.  His chemistry with Gadot was so perfect and spot on.  There is a lot of humor in this movie and it works naturally.  Because this is a double fish out of water story, there are so many great sequences in this movie that are so genuine and touching and slightly comical.  There is a scene where Wonder Woman is dancing with Steve and it starts to snow.  The smile on Diana’s face is so striking it paints a very poetic portrait on the strong and warm femininity that Wonder Woman endures.

The story itself if well told.  There are a few minor issues with the plot that I will get to in a bit, but overall the story was compelling and established Diana’s origins extremely well.  The supporting cast also were great but the real rock star here is director Patty Jenkins.  Jenkins hasn’t directed a film in well over ten years.  The last movie she made was the true crime serial killer film called “Monster” starring Charlize Theron and Christina Ricci which was outstanding and Charlize won best actress that year.  Jenkins brings such new life and creativity to this movie and it really is a gigantic breath of fresh air.  I love Zack Snyder and what he’s done with the DC movies but they need to expand their directors and this movie proves it.  James Wan will be tackling “Aquaman” which could also bode well for this franchise.  The music was epic and the Hans Zimmer “Wonder Woman” score pumps you up for hardcore action.  And the cinematography mixed in with the vibrant colors makes this a gorgeous film to look at and I cannot wait to see this again.

As far as the negatives go, the big issue that I had was the pacing.  The first act was so good and had such a fun kinetic energy but the second act dragged on a little too much.  Minus the field of battle sequence, the second half provided a lot of story and maybe it was a little too much.  For me it felt too clunky, but its forgivable because the third act delivers the cliched boss fight that we all see in every superhero film.  A lot of people complained about the villain and I agree he wasn’t amazing but I didn’t view it as a big negative, I thought it was fine.  Again these are little nitpicks that are easily overlooked because the rest of the movie is that good.

“Wonder Woman” is extremely fun, action packed with amazing acting and dramatic storytelling.  The World War I period piece setting was something new that gave the movie its identity.  Gal Gadot fits into this role like a glove and I cannot wait to see her again down the line.  “Wonder Woman” will be the best blockbuster this summer and is shooting for a big opening weekend.  This movie is a gigantic step in the right direction for DC and they should be proud that they made a real winner.  But in my book the real winner is Patty Jenkins who once again fires on all cylinders giving us as audience members a female hero to look up to and admire.

Grade:  A

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