Better late than never! The First Lady of the Comic Strip finally gets her solo live-action movie debut – and what a debut it was!
We got our first glimpse of Gal Gadot’s interpretation of Diana Prince in Batman vs. Superman, a film that literally split movie audiences in half – as many hated it as others loved it… But almost everyone can agree that Wonder Woman’s scenes were among the highlights.
Still its quite amazing that in the lead-up to Wonder Woman‘s cinematic premiere in May of this year, the movie received hardly any publicity – and apart from just a couple of teaser trailers, none of the flashy ‘behind-the-scenes’, character profiles and in-depth cast interviews that we’d previously been treated to for other blockbuster superhero flicks, like The Avengers, Guardians of the Galaxy, and X-Men to name just a few.
It’s sad to say that still, even in this day and age, expectations for a female-lead film remain low, especially in this predominantly male-dominated, testosterone-fuelled movie genre. And judging by the seemingly unenthusiastic level of publicity being generated by Warner Brothers themselves, it felt as if even they weren’t expecting a great box-office turnout for Wonder Woman.
But how wrong they were: the movie blew away fans, critics and box-office predictions alike! More than a month after its initial release date, the film isn’t slowing down – and is shaping up to become the highest-grossing movie of the summer, and the second highest-grossing film of the year – set to over-take Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 which is currently dominating as the top film of the summer.
So what is it about this movie that has created such a unanimously positive reaction from all who’ve seen it? Well – it works – on every level. First of all Gadot’s portrayal of Diana is convincing, as she visibly matures and grows in confidence through the story – from her sheltered and very protected upbringing in the enchanted island of Themyscira, to her ultimate exposure to the very real horrors and suffering of the First World War.
Gadot is supported by a strong ensemble cast and her on-screen relationship with Chris Pine works beautifully. They work off each other well, with plenty of humour and dry wit to balance all the drama and action. Speaking of which, the action sequences were really well choreographed, and paired with a driving, orchestral soundtrack that set the pulse racing.
Yes, this movie has certainly broken the glass ceiling for both female-lead movies and female movie directors (Wonder Woman was directed by Patty Jenkins, who had already won acclaim for her film Monster and drama series The Killing), but its not just about Girl Power you know! Take it from this male movie reviewer – even I experienced quite a few lump-in-the-throat moments during the course of this movie!
Wonder Woman is feel-good, empowering and very well put-together – and original – which is a rare thing in cinema these days!