If you were expecting to be blown away by the Wonder Woman 1984 movie that premiered on Christmas day on the HBO Max streaming service, I wouldn’t hold your breath. And yes, that truly pains me to say because I was really rooting for the film to be spectacular since Wonder Woman is supposed to be one of the most dynamic comic characters within the DC realm.
However, one of my favorite parts about the film is the opening scene where we see the young fresh faced and soon to be Wonder Woman, aka Diana Prince, eager to compete in a warriors contest amongst older and trained women.
She does undeniably well as we’re first introduced to her and her natural born talents (guided by her mother and auntie). However, she attempts to trick the system by solidifying her place back into the competition after falling off her horse. When Diana is disqualified, her aunt teaches her a valuable lesson about honesty and truth regardless of the outcome. No win or accomplishment is worth a lie of “earning” it.
The rest of the film isn’t as engaging as I expected it to be. Vulture.com summed it up best with the following quote: “It’s cheerfully lit, as the ’80s period demands, but it’s neither visually intriguing nor beautiful. Wonder Woman 1984 overwhelms the senses, confusing largess with wonder. The action is hobbled by poor blocking; a strange spatial dynamic makes it so that you’re never exactly sure where characters are in the space of the scene …. There are a few cool touches to Jenkins’s filmmaking aesthetic — an intriguing spin on the invisible jet, Diana’s increased reliance on her lasso, her new ability to fly — but, overall, the promise of action sequence thrills feels unfulfilled.”
After doing further research on the original comics and a revamp of the movies, it’s clear that the storyline doesn’t receive it’s justice when it comes to truly explaining the ins and outs of Wonder Woman’s story. We’re also left wondering (pun intended) what Diana was doing in the years of WWI or why she chose not to stop numerous other global threats that may have appeared.
It’s like I was constantly expecting more while watching the film, but I never felt that way watching an Iron Man or Captain America movie (which can be an entirely new debate altogether). I think Hollywood has a lot of work cut out for them as the traditional settings of watching new releases in theaters are changing. There were definitely mixed reviews regarding the film on social media ranging from confusion to never wanting to see it again, but overall I believe that Gal Gadot, who takes on the starring role, held her own throughout the film.
But hey, the film brought in $822.2 million at the box office. So, it couldn’t have been that bad, right? Or are people incredibly in a need of action during quarantine? If you’ve seen the film, hit me up and let me know what you think of it!
By Kori Barnes, Junior, UNLV.