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Is the Wonder Woman Film Wonderful? … Yes it is!

It has a strong story, great characters, action, humor, and heart. Now I’ll admit that I’m a lifelong DC Comics fan, so I may be biased. But to get an unbiased opinion, I brought a friend to the screening with me who doesn’t go to superhero movies or read comic books. In fact, my friend didn’t even know which superheroes belonged to Marvel and which were from DC Comics, which I found very disturbing. I mean, why are we even friends? But I digress. When the movie ended, and I asked for an initial reaction, here’s what I was told: “I really liked it and I would see it again.” Now I know that might not sound like a glowing endorsement, but it is. My friend avoids superhero movies like the plague. So by praising the film, and expressing a desire to see it again, it was like I experienced a movie-going miracle.





WHAT I LIKE:

Without giving away many spoilers, I’d say that Gal Gadot is a winner as the titular character. She’s strong and compassionate as Diana Prince, and she’s a badass Wonder Woman. In fact, all the Amazons are skillful warriors. They are also diverse and driven. The Amazons are training for the day they have to fight Ares, the God of War, and protect mankind. But Queen Hippolyta hopes that day will never come, because it may cost her her daughter. But when Steve Trevor’s plane crash-lands on their island paradise, the Queen’s worst fears are realized. Diana leaves the safety of Themyscara, for Man’s World, to discover her destiny, and to fight for those who can’t fight for themselves.

The film isn’t a joke-fest, but it does have humor, which was very refreshing. Diana is obviously a ‘fish-out-of-water’ and that lends itself to comedy. And she’s also a strong and independent woman, in an era where women weren’t even allowed to vote, so men don’t know what to make of her. And her relationship with Steve Trevor is both amusing and touching.

The action/fight sequences are impressive and well choreographed. With a project of this magnitude, there are obviously CGI effects and stunt doubles. But all the Amazons had to do a lot of their own fighting. And at the official press conference; Gal Gadot, Robin Wright, and Connie Nielsen spoke about all the rigorous training they went through to prepare for their roles as Diana, Antiope, and Queen Hippolyta. While, on the other hand,  Chris Pine joked that Steve Trevor is a brawler and not a skilled fighter, so he didn’t have to do any training, and that’s the way he liked it. He was happy to let the women do the heavy lifting.

They also didn’t massage Wonder Woman’s origin story and make it otherworldly.  It still involves Greek Mythology, with a nod to its comic book heritage.  So you hear about Zeus and the like, and that’s alright. Superhero films aren’t real, so you just go with it, and enjoy the ride.

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE:

DC Films can get a little too real sometimes, and there is a bit of that here as well.  The death toll was a bit high for a comic book movie, even though the film takes place during the First World War.  It’s called escapism for a reason.  But despite it all, Wonder Woman emerges as a hero for the people, and that’s the real takeaway from this origin story.

OVERALL:

I loved the film. It totally worked for me and I will definitely be seeing it again and again. Wonder Woman puts the DC Universe back on track. Let’s just hope that Justice League can be as good or better. And for those wondering, there is no after-the-credits scene. I know DC doesn’t want to be a copycat, but Marvel didn’t invent post-credits scenes, they just use them a lot. And the fans love it.  So it would have been nice to see a scene at the end of Wonder Woman that leads us into Justice League. Nothing wrong with throwing the fans a bone DC Films. I’m just saying…

NOTE:  Our hearts go out to Zack Snyder and family.  Zack & Deborah Snyder are Producers on Wonder Woman, and Zack helped write the story… Due to his daughter’s tragic suicide, he stepped down from Justice League, turning the directorial duties over to Joss Whedon.   Joss directed Avengers 1 & 2.

–  Zack Snyder: “I’ve decided to take a step back from the movie to be with my family, be with my kids, who really need me. They are all having a hard time. I’m having a hard time… I want the movie to be amazing and I’m a fan, but that all pales pretty quickly in comparison. I know the fans are going to be worried about the movie, but there are seven other kids that need me. In the end, it’s just a movie. It’s a great movie. But it’s just a movie.”

Prayers out to Zack Snyder and his Family.  And good luck to Joss Whedon. The Snyders made sure the movie is in good hands.