Sunday, June 18, 2017

Wonder Woman

Still gonna wait for reviews on Justice League tho.
In an "objective" measurement of comparative movie quality, Wonder Woman clocks in at a high Thor 2. Solid, mythological, good action, decent story, mediocre villain.

But the point is, this "objective" measurement isn't really "objective", it's a dominant paradigm measurement. It's a measurement that deliberately ignores the effect of the first (major) female superhero movie directed by the first (major) female superhero movie director.

And what that ultimately means is this: the things this movie gets wrong are things a lot of blockbusters get wrong. It's too long, the writing hovers around mediocre, the acting follows suit, and some of the action scenes look fakey-slidey.

But the things this movie gets right? Those are things almost NO MOVIE gets right. Like the completely unglamorous version of the Amazon army. They're less glamorous than the Spartans in 300. They're real women and real warriors and real warrior women and this never happens.

This movie never, ever includes the words "Wonder Woman". She's "Diana" from start to finish. And they don't do that thing that so many shitty superhero movies do and throw in the name as like a sentence from some side character or a newspaper headline. It wasn't until the movie ended and it hadn't happened that I realized how much I'd been expecting and dreading it.

It's also just fucking competently made, which is not exceptional for superhero movies but it is exceptional for every DC movie since The Dark Knight (FUCK YOU THE DARK KNIGHT RISES IS COMPLETE FUCKING GARBAGE). It's bright when it needs to be bright and dark when it needs to be dark and doesn't try too hard to be "grounded". There's almost no Snyder-stink on this except for the excessive slo-mo in fight scenes.

Does it lift, intentionally or otherwise, to a startling degree from Captain America: The First Avenger? Yes it does. But that's actually a solid choice for a template in this case, and for this character. Does it always make the right choice? No. But agin, it makes some right choices that are so new and so refreshing that it elevates the rest of the movie. So when you hear people saying "it's not as good as the reviews", keep in mind that those choices and that elevation are what they're discounting.

1 comment:

  1. In the category of cringe-worthy, inevitable lines that were omitted: there was no "I am no man" comment when entering no-man's land.

    I'm still slightly incredulous that the script skipped it.