Reviewed by: Thomas Butcher
We had to wait until the year 2017, and at long last, we finally have our first live action theatrical film about everyone’s favorite Amazon.
“Wonder Woman” delivers an adventure that is unique to the superhero genre. As it goes through the motions of what is to be expected, the film ultimately prevails by not succumbing to predictable plot points. This is how you make a movie that people will really want to see, and one that people will remember fondly.
The title character of “Wonder Woman” is played by actress Gal Gadot. This is the role that Gadot was born to play. Early on in her life and career, the Israeli actress/model served in the military. Finding a real life “Wonder Woman” to portray the fictional version in this film is a win.
Amazon Princess Diana grows up on the island of Themyscira, which is inhabited by her other Amazon sisters. Diana then meets Steve Trevor, played by actor Chris Pine, after his plane crashes off of the shore of the island. Steve, who is the first man that Diana has ever laid eyes on, tells her about a great war that has claimed the lives of millions of people. Diana believes that the god of war, Ares, is the cause of the war, and she decides to leave with Steve to put a stop to it.
Taking place during World War I, Diana must maneuver through a place and time when women did not have equal rights and did not fight in wars. But when Wonder Woman arrives on the war front, her man-squad ultimately carries on as her sidekicks.
Gadot’s performance was the perfect blend of innate curiosity for the new world surrounding her and constant drive to defeat the enemy at hand. She also plays very well opposite Chris Pine, who portrays an innocent gentleman who adorably tries to protect her. All in all, there is great chemistry between the two.
While pacing may be considered a tad slow early on, it is quickly forgiven due to the amazing action sequences. From tracking shots that have a lot of action in one take to dangerously elegant slow motion shots, the experience resembles a rather thrilling roller coaster ride.
Director Patty Jenkins had a clear vision for this film through to the end. Diana is a different kind of superhero, and not just because she’s a woman. She grows up her entire life wanting nothing more than to fight and protect. Saving others is all that she lives for. She wants to live in a world of peace, a world without war. Diana never exhibits any selfishness, as everything she does is for the benefit of others.
With lots of action and drama driving the film, it consciously takes its moments for a little comic relief. These comedic moments are laid out so naturally that the sense of purpose is never lost. We’re never left waiting to get back to the story as the comedy itself is embedded into it, never veering off course.
“Wonder Woman” makes it difficult to find anything to complain about. As possibly the best DC Comics movie since “The Dark Knight,” those who had doubts about the future of the DC Extended Universe are now begging for more.