Movie Review: Wonder Woman
By Felix Quinonez
June 19, 2017
In hindsight, it shouldn’t be so surprising that Wonder Woman, directed by Patty Jenkins and starring Gal Gadot, turned out as great as it did. She was barely in Batman v Superman, directed by Zack Snyder, but she easily stole the show.
When she jumped into the fray of the cluttered final battle, it was one of the few moments when that movie, however briefly, came alive. DC didn’t just finally get it right; they knocked it out of the park. Wonder Woman is thrilling, heartfelt, and endlessly entertaining. The movie has plenty of action, soul, and a star making performance from Gal Gadot.
The movie kicks off in the present day, France with Wonder Woman working as some kind of curator at the Louvre (even superheroes have to pay the bills). She receives a very elaborate package from none other than Bruce Wayne. It turns out to be a photo that serves as the movie’s framing device and transports us back in time.
Suddenly, we are in the mystical Themyscira when Diana is just a child. But she is already full of life and she watches in awe as the other Amazons train. She desperately wants to join them, but her mother, Queen Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen), won’t allow it. Nielsen exudes an effortless elegance and strength.
Predictably enough, Diana eventually does get her way when her aunt, General Antiope, (Robin Wright) decides to train her. Wright is stunning as a hardened and caring warrior. She doesn’t have a huge role but makes great use of her screen time. And eventually, Diana grows to become a strong warrior who surpasses everyone’s expectations.
The island of Themyscira is beautifully shot and seeing the women train was great, but it’s too bad that the movie never focuses on any other aspects of their lives.
One day Steve Trevor, (Chris Pine) an Allied spy, crashes on the water off the beach of their island (it’s a little unclear how he broke through the force field). Diana sees this and wastes no time in saving him.
But unfortunately, some German pilots on his tail also make their way onto the island. And what follows is both thrilling and harrowing. As the Germans storm the beach, the Amazons are quick to take a stand to protect their home.
The women are strong and brave, but many of them, including Antiope, fall to the guns of men. It’s a powerful and moving scene with a real sense of urgency.
The battle feels like there is genuinely a lot at stake, something not a lot of comic book movies have been able to pull off. The violence is brutal and at times hard to watch.
Not surprisingly, the women don’t trust Steve and some want to kill him. But instead, Diana uses her magical lasso on him. It compels him to tell the truth, and they learn about his mission and that World War I is raging outside of the island. He has to get a notebook with secret information back to his commanders in hopes of ending the war.