Even before the movie was released, early reviews of the movie foretold of a blockbuster and with all of the attention around the movie it has to begin with, it is no surprise that it has even surpassed Mama Mia at the box office with $653 Million worldwide in 3 weeks alone. Rotten Tomatoes gives it a 92% Fresh Rating with 91% of the audience liking it, and the general consensus among reviewers is that it is a must-see movie worth your hard earned dollars/Gil/rupees/gold etc.
Here are our thoughts on the movie.
Mike: It was a decent re-imagining of the origin story, and for once it felt like a whole movie with a decent plot and a lot less like a promo for a bigger movie. There were no big new character reveals and no upcoming alien threats foreshadowed- because the movie did not need them. it was a solid story that could stand up on it’s own- albeit some changes to the lineage of Diana could have been taken out. See, no spoilers there! I never expected anything complicated, and having a comic geek background makes me over critical of comic to movie translations- but over all I liked the story even with the predictable plot lines and almost excessive CG towards the end.
Shane: I enjoyed a lot about the movie. I felt that it was a well thought out movie however did fall into a bit of a Marvel structure. Very solid and enjoyable first 90 minutes but dropped off in the last section. What I really enjoyed about the movie was a total sense of naivety on Diana Prince part. It was very much like watching a young child going off on an adventure. There was a level of predictability as Mike has said, but then it is very hard to throw a curve ball in movies these days as everyone seems to be bursting for information from announcement to release.
Growing up, the first name that comes to mind when you say female superhero is Wonder Woman. The Linda Carter show had a lot to do with that mind set. The fact that there were barely any female supers plastered on comics till maybe the late 80’s (even though Jean Grey first appeared in the 60’s), meant that there just wasn’t anyone worth the attention of the female audience. The Barbie culture kinda made it a point that even Wonder Woman had to be of a certain look. What the movie did was cast this magnificent looking actor and go from there. Gal Gadot’s portrayal of Diana was spot on. There was both a naivete and cynicism that were reflected in the acting and in the plot that really developed the character to be more than just a super human with equally impressive body parts. Her looks are distracting but not distracting enough for you to be able to ignore the utter bad-assery (yeah that’t totally a word!) of her fight scenes, her bravery and sincere heroics.
The supporting cast led by Captain Kirk err I mean Chris Pine playing Steve Trevor did a great job in making it more fathomable for some for leading men to be as macho as they want to be but still just be a supporting role. He played a great damsel without being whiny or incapable as an action star himself. His secretary Etta played by Lucy Davis (yes, from Shaun of the Dead fame) stole the show in a few scenes and provided the well timed comic relief that punctuated what would normally be awkward “adjusting the the real world” scenes in the movie.
I have to mention how Connie Nelson (Hippolyta) and Robin Wright (Antiope) were also quite amazing. One major thing that stuck out was how they didn’t try to smooth out their skin and pretty them up like most movies do- they were war scarred battle-tested warriors and their visage and demeanor were at all times regal and fierce. I do not think they could have done a better job casting them.
Shane: From the very start of the movie, well when she appeared, I felt like Gal Gadot kinda hit the nail on the head with this performance. She managed to capture a young, naive Diana with almost annoying accuracy. She managed to hit her mark for any comedic timing that was required, even if one or two felt a little forced in there (re-shoots maybe?). I felt like there was a very distinct difference in how she carried the character in present day/BvS time to how she carried herself in this. Like she had really grown up by the time Bats or Sups meets her.
Chris Pine, I thought, was a fantastic addition to the movie. Never really stealing the focus from Wonder Woman but definitely bringing something to the table. It could have gone a different direction and he could have ended up being the “hero” or at least the one she relied on. But good writing and a great performance saved that. The others in the party all played a very minor role in movie but again carried their parts well.
Mike: The movie had a lot of hype. There was this whole pro-feminist vibe that people are talking about. I saw the movie a tad differently. There is no mistake that the Wonder Woman character is the epitome of a strong, get-things-done, can-be-the-main-hero type. However when people talk about how this pushes forward the women’s rights and feminism in movies, I have to disagree. Diana was born into a world already surrounded by all women- strong and self-governing women–women who are warriors, scholars, senators etc who are surrounded but… yup.. more women. So in essence there is no struggle as far as the glass ceiling goes.
There is no male dominated social structure to go against because they have already removed them from the equation. To top it off, Diana is the most powerful of them all. She had no ladder to climb because she was the epitome of all the ideals physical and otherwise that made the amazons who they are. Gal Gadot herself is hypnotically stunning, almost ensuring the male movie-going public to go just to get a glimpse of her in action. She is (spoiler ahead!!! stop reading now if you don’t want to know… ) by this story line a GOD, making the female struggle kind of pointless among mere mortals.
BUT, the question is, would I recommend people to see it? Absolutely! The movie is fun, felt complete (with some CG caveats) and had a brilliant cast.
Shane: I enjoyed this movie thoroughly and would recommend everyone to go see it. It was a great look at a not so divisive DCEU and I am looking forward to seeing the next chapter in. World War 2 maybe? It felt look a good Marvel film. Let me explain.
It felt like they were trying to make a movie everyone would enjoy. Something that no matter if you are a comic book , war film, comedy or action fan you would come out saying, “That was a good movie!”. And in this it succeeded. I enjoyed nearly every aspect of the film. From the character portrayal, to the story, to the music. All of it. What it didn’t do was set itself apart from the superhero genre. Which is something BvS did. Love it or hate it, BvS was very different. It was dark and it was divisive. I’m not saying it was without it’s flaws, but I did enjoy the different take on a Comic Book movie.