Monday, June 5, 2017

Wonderful Woman Is More Like It

I am very pleased with Wonder Woman, the long-awaited theatrical release bringing a bit of equity to the DC trinity. It's 1 out of 15 movies (since the 1978 Superman), but 1 out of 7 if you only go back to 2005 (14%). Not bad when you consider that the in-theater audience for superhero movies is usually only 40% female, because girls, amirite?

Wonder Woman is a character that suffers from weak editorial vision at DC (see also: Superman). DC tried rebooting her many times. They tried her as a blonde. They tried her in flats.

But they always stay true to her core character traits: bullet-stopping bracelets, a golden lariat that compels truth, and attire inappropriate for someone who intends to fight in any capacity. It's strange that girls don't embrace a culture that treats them with such dignity. I'm sure men wouldn't mention it if the situation was reversed.

Wow, this picture is straight out of a dream I had in 1982. And 1983 through 2005 and a few more times since then. This one is also pretty good.

Where was I? Oh, right, good movie. I am impressed with the direction from Patty Jenkins, whose other feature, Monster, I did not see. I compared a few scenes favorably with some scenes from Steven Spielberg (granted, I don't really like his movies) and wondered why she's been hiding her light under a bushel for the last 13 or 14 years. When I mentioned that to my mom she replied that it likely wasn't by choice. She made an Oscar-winning indie film that earned $60 million on a budget of $8 million, let's not do anything crazy. Who does she think she is?

And it's not like Patty did nothing between 2003 and 2017. She had a kid. And she directed the episode of Arrested Development with the show's second highest ratings of ever, ever; and two episodes of Entourage, so let's stop talking about her.

Gal Gadot, who was in some of the $1.5 billion (with a b) Fast and Furious franchise movies (or so I am told), is great in the role. She beat out Chippy Chapman, Toots Magee and Bimbo Billingsley for the coveted part of third fiddle in the Justice League movies movie. Chris Pine is perfectly adequate as Lionel Waggoner. Other people are in the cast and are pretty solid.

The story is solid with a slightly predictable plot twist (imagine if they'd gone a different way). I'm happy they used Ares and not Cheetah or Giganta. I'm sure Cheetah is coming.

If the movie has a flaw, it's that the urgency of the mission wasn't SO urgent that there couldn't be a shopping montage (chick flicks, amirite). If the movie has 2 flaws it's that and the score which seems to vary between combat, pensively combative and combatitively pensive.

I really enjoyed the movie. It was worth the effort to leave the house and deal with others. If Chris Pine appears in any future Wonder Woman or Wonder Woman-related movies, I will rescind this enthusiasm.

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