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Review: Wonder Woman

Wonder Woman
06.02.2017
10 10

Read JimmyO's take HERE!

I went into WONDER WOMAN with some trepidation. My excitement for the film has been high, especially after getting a look at a few of the scenes earlier in the year. It showed promise, but I wasn't overwhelmed that it would be able to pull it off completely. After all, the last two DCEU films took a hell of a beating by critics and fans alike (although I've been a big fan of them all, including BVS), which made me wonder if the powers that be would meddle the film into something without an identity and replace it with a by-the-numbers crowd pleaser. Then came those early reviews that showered the film with praise and my fears of overhype kicked in. So, imagine my sigh of relief when the credits started to roll on WONDER WOMAN and I felt nothing but pure amazement for it.

WONDER WOMAN, as it turns out, is a monumental achievement not only for the DCEU, but for the genre as a whole. Where fatigue had begun to set in with even some of Marvel's critic-proof machines, WONDER WOMAN reopens the doors of the origin story and provides a tale that's at once familiar and new at the same time. Seeing the world of Diana in Themyscira early on, her character is crafted with care from the start; the tenacity, rebellious nature, determination, strength, spirit and passion are seen in her eyes as a little girl all the way up to the time she is a young woman. The torch of Diana/Wonder Woman is lit and carried with ease by Gal Gadot, who embodies the character entirely; she IS WONDER WOMAN in every way that Christopher Reeve was Superman (who has since passed that torch to Henry Cavill). For someone that was met with a rash of animosity when she was hired for the role (akin to other stars-turned-superheroes Michael Keaton, Heath Ledger, Ben Affleck, etc.), Gadot has embraced not only the role, but the responsibility that comes with it. Bringing WONDER WOMAN to the big-screen in her first solo film was no guaranteed slam dunk and Gadot bears the weight of that on her shoulders with ease.

And if Gadot bore the weight, it's director Patty Jenkins that pulled it, bringing this half-century old character to life with vibrancy, style, charisma, depth, emotion, iconography and, above all else, heart. Jenkins was absolutely a gamble for a superhero film, but not because she's female, but because like many filmmakers making the jump to big-budget enterprises like this, she was untested. But, man, does she pass the test with flying colors here (and it doesn't always work out that way, as we all well know). One of my concerns was how Jenkins would handle the action in WONDER WOMAN as I knew that we certainly needed to care about Diana, but we also want to be entertained by seeing her in full-glory action. Jenkins uses a mixture of Zack Snyder's speed ramp, slow-motion style mixed with powerful, colorful and iconic shots that help put the "super" in the "hero" with tremendous effect. Visceral, powerful and rousing come to mind every time Diana charges into battle here. But, don't let that fool you into thinking that it's the only trick up her sleeve; Jenkins balances WONDER WOMAN with plenty of pauses, allowing us to get to know not only our key players, but the supporting cast as well. Jenkins spends ample time familiarizing us with the people that inhabit Diana's new (and old) world, allowing her to grow and change with their influence, rather than simply react with pithy quips and subject them to cannon fodder status.

Perhaps the most affecting aspect of the film is the relationship between Steve Trevor (as played by Chris Pine) and Diana, which ultimately forms the basis for Diana's journey. After crash landing on Themyscira and later escaping with Diana to find and destroy Ares, The God of War, their relationship becomes a symbiotic one, in which Steve feeds off her energy and tenacity, while she feeds off his humanity and will. And the chemistry is there, through and through. Pine does some of his best work in years and adds both charm, wit and grounded-ness to the role that easily could've been a rip-off of any adventure/soldier type that's graced the screen before. Both Pine and Gadot make for a dynamic pair and their interactions are ripe with both humorous banter and genuine passion. Had that relationship not worked onscreen, WONDER WOMAN would not be half the film it is. We HAVE to care for these two or it simply doesn't work and thankfully it absolutely does.

If you're looking for flaws you can certainly find them, as you can in just about any film, but WONDER WOMAN is a film that easily outmatches those flaws with its strengths. Some scenes go on a bit too long, some of the CGI (although minimal) is a bit off, the villain aspect isn't as powerful as it could've been and perhaps we could lose 5 - 10 minutes and never feel it, but the film redeems every one of those flaws with breathtaking moments of action and emotion that simply isn't always the case with superhero films, even if they're all aiming for the same goal (which is usually to bring more emotional stakes to balance out the boom). WONDER WOMAN excels at tapping that emotional core, from small, tender moments to big, iconic ones; it's relentless in the pursuit of showing genuine heart, accomplishing that mission with grace, style and excitement. Beyond that, the film stays more true to the comics lore than one might think, with Diana using her compassion and heart as a guiding principle for her motives and ultimate power, which was the basis for her initial inception. It's a testament to all involved that this was captured onscreen.

Gadot, for her part, has established a foothold on the character of WONDER WOMAN, taking the torch from Lynda Carter, who has long stood as the most recognizeable face of the character outside the comic page, and does so honorably and with a twinkle in her eye that almost makes you think she actually believes she's the real WONDER WOMAN. I guess that's the point of any actor playing a superhero, but as one of the most famous of all time, the task was mountainous and Gadot has made it to the peak. For Jenkins, who batted away every attempt to have someone make this film about gender politics, she proves that she is every bit a WONDER WOMAN as Gadot, staying true to her vision, passion and commitment in making a film for everyone, regardless of gender, never sacrificing what the character means to the world. In doing so, she has done exactly what Richard Donner did in 1978; she created a new cinematic icon.

I didn't expect to love WONDER WOMAN as much as I did. At the minimum, I thought it would be a fun romp and, at best, a solid debut that at least establishes Diana amongst the broader DCEU. But, it's a much stronger effort than that and, although not without its flaws, a film made of genuine heart and soul with imagery that remains burned in my brain, begging to be seen again, and performances that delight, challenge and inspire (as well as a rousing and pounding score from Rupert Gregson-Williams). As a lifetime comic fan, movie fanatic and a purveyor of geekdom in general, I feel this is a standard-setting film and one that I hope is emulated when shaping up the next chapter in the ever-expanding comic book genre, regardless of studio or property. WONDER WOMAN is the new standard bearer.

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Source: JoBlo.com

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3:55PM on 06/07/2017
Too much cheesiness. Like at the end *SPOILERS* (Kind of)....After the bad guy was killed, all the soldiers shown start hugging each other. That was so dumb. The bad guy only controls war, not people being nice and friendly to everyone.

And I think people are so in love with this movie because a DC movie was finally decent after Nolan's trilogy and a woman was leading that decent, and now successful, movie. Also the whole "women's power" makes them over think their score. They rate it higher
Too much cheesiness. Like at the end *SPOILERS* (Kind of)....After the bad guy was killed, all the soldiers shown start hugging each other. That was so dumb. The bad guy only controls war, not people being nice and friendly to everyone.

And I think people are so in love with this movie because a DC movie was finally decent after Nolan's trilogy and a woman was leading that decent, and now successful, movie. Also the whole "women's power" makes them over think their score. They rate it higher because of what everyone is saying it brings for women and what not. In a few years if they watch it again, I seriously doubt they will think that highly of it....Just my opinion obviously, but I think it's one that I will never change.
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8:26AM on 06/09/2017
Agreed.
Agreed.
1:24PM on 06/07/2017

Nope

After seeing her in BvS I was really looking forward to this movie,but for me it just didn't deliver. Found it quite boring for the most part. Definately not 10/10.
After seeing her in BvS I was really looking forward to this movie,but for me it just didn't deliver. Found it quite boring for the most part. Definately not 10/10.
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3:14PM on 06/06/2017

No way

I haven't seen Wonder Woman yet but there is no way in hell this movie is 10/10. Sorry.
I haven't seen Wonder Woman yet but there is no way in hell this movie is 10/10. Sorry.
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3:52PM on 06/07/2017
That is such an idiotic thing to say because you don't know yet.
That is such an idiotic thing to say because you don't know yet.
9:56PM on 06/05/2017
I would say it met my expectations and was satisfied with the end-results. If I have to nitpick, I was disappointed in the way Ewan Bremmer's character was under-used and felt unnecessary because Sad Taghmaoui stole the show (in terms of secondary characters) and also how was Wonder Woman (potential SPOILER) still able to walk comfortably with a sword down her back dangling from her evening gown? Anyways, theres a bunch of other stuff I could point out but generally WW delivered and hopefully
I would say it met my expectations and was satisfied with the end-results. If I have to nitpick, I was disappointed in the way Ewan Bremmer's character was under-used and felt unnecessary because Sad Taghmaoui stole the show (in terms of secondary characters) and also how was Wonder Woman (potential SPOILER) still able to walk comfortably with a sword down her back dangling from her evening gown? Anyways, theres a bunch of other stuff I could point out but generally WW delivered and hopefully will set the pace for how the DCEU makes its movies.
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9:27PM on 06/07/2017
I thought her walking with the sword was so dumb as well...One of the things I found to ridiculous in this movie.
I thought her walking with the sword was so dumb as well...One of the things I found to ridiculous in this movie.
4:18AM on 06/05/2017

10/10? Give me a break

Generic superhero film gets blown wildly out of proportion. This movie was mediocre.
Generic superhero film gets blown wildly out of proportion. This movie was mediocre.
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5:36PM on 06/04/2017

10/10?

Seriously? I mean I had a good time, but it could only be rated that high in the vacuum of this DC universe. It's fun, but still very clearly flawed throughout. Don't oversell it dude, it's good, and that's huge step from the movies leading up to this.
Seriously? I mean I had a good time, but it could only be rated that high in the vacuum of this DC universe. It's fun, but still very clearly flawed throughout. Don't oversell it dude, it's good, and that's huge step from the movies leading up to this.
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5:57PM on 06/04/2017
lol. I think people are too in love with it because is "shows", and is all about, Women Power!
lol. I think people are too in love with it because is "shows", and is all about, Women Power!
6:25PM on 06/04/2017
It is flawed throughout, but don't forget "the film redeems every one of those flaws with breathtaking moments of action and emotion". ;-)
It is flawed throughout, but don't forget "the film redeems every one of those flaws with breathtaking moments of action and emotion". ;-)
11:17AM on 06/05/2017
I had a good time, but I don't recall any moments that were really overwhelming with emotion; the action was good though, if we just gloss a few bad cg shots. Most of it's flaws are story based, which shows a lack of emotion in important moments. I'm glad you had fun, so did I, but it really isn't even close to being a perfect movie, but it is the best one DC has for this universe so far.
I had a good time, but I don't recall any moments that were really overwhelming with emotion; the action was good though, if we just gloss a few bad cg shots. Most of it's flaws are story based, which shows a lack of emotion in important moments. I'm glad you had fun, so did I, but it really isn't even close to being a perfect movie, but it is the best one DC has for this universe so far.
12:20PM on 06/05/2017
I don't remember breathtaking or overwhelming moments of emotion either, I was quoting from the review above. lol. I agree, some bad cgi at times and story problems, but overall a decent movie that I enjoyed.
I don't remember breathtaking or overwhelming moments of emotion either, I was quoting from the review above. lol. I agree, some bad cgi at times and story problems, but overall a decent movie that I enjoyed.
2:05PM on 06/05/2017
I agree, sorry, I didn't catch the quote. lol. It's been a few days since I read the review.
I agree, sorry, I didn't catch the quote. lol. It's been a few days since I read the review.
6:57PM on 06/03/2017

"WONDER WOMAN is the new standard bearer."

Oh please.........
Oh please.........
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7:10AM on 06/03/2017

Great review

Reading this and all the other positive reviews & reactions make me really happy, the movie seems to hit all the right notes.
Reading this and all the other positive reviews & reactions make me really happy, the movie seems to hit all the right notes.
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11:29PM on 06/02/2017

10?

Out of freaking 10? What other movies have you given a 10? Because I would never give a movie 10 out of 10. No matter how much I liked it. But then again my name has never been at the top of the back of a dvd box underneath big bold letters saying "Greatest action movie of the last decade" or some shit. I'm sure the movie is good but come on man. I don't know how many times I've walked out of a theatre and thought what I had just witnessed was awesome only to be let down months later when I
Out of freaking 10? What other movies have you given a 10? Because I would never give a movie 10 out of 10. No matter how much I liked it. But then again my name has never been at the top of the back of a dvd box underneath big bold letters saying "Greatest action movie of the last decade" or some shit. I'm sure the movie is good but come on man. I don't know how many times I've walked out of a theatre and thought what I had just witnessed was awesome only to be let down months later when I bought it on dvd. Quite a few. I'm looking at you Mad Max.
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1:26AM on 06/03/2017
I mean it's really subjective isn't it? If the movie is a 10 for him it doesn't mean it has to be a 10 for you. I would definitely give it a 9 though.

By the way I've seen Fury Road three times and I still love it!
I mean it's really subjective isn't it? If the movie is a 10 for him it doesn't mean it has to be a 10 for you. I would definitely give it a 9 though.

By the way I've seen Fury Road three times and I still love it!
2:25AM on 06/03/2017
Deal with it. It's a number.
Deal with it. It's a number.
6:55AM on 06/03/2017
Deal with it, it's an opinion.
Deal with it, it's an opinion.
10:38AM on 06/05/2017
How about you see the movie before criticising this review?
How about you see the movie before criticising this review?
5:13PM on 06/02/2017
What I liked most about it was the sense of reality it had. Like an old fashioned Hollywood epic with a cast of thousands. Even Themyscira seemed like it was real. The Donner Superman had that feeling too.
What I liked most about it was the sense of reality it had. Like an old fashioned Hollywood epic with a cast of thousands. Even Themyscira seemed like it was real. The Donner Superman had that feeling too.
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10:40AM on 06/05/2017
And everyone around her is vulnerable. Even in Themyscira. Her inability to save everyone is what makes everything feel more real.
And everyone around her is vulnerable. Even in Themyscira. Her inability to save everyone is what makes everything feel more real.
4:30PM on 06/02/2017
It's exactly the type of comic book film that DC and this genre needed. Can't wait to see it again. Bring on Justice League!
It's exactly the type of comic book film that DC and this genre needed. Can't wait to see it again. Bring on Justice League!
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5:28PM on 06/02/2017
As much as that would be nice thing to look forward to, Justice League looks as promising as Batman v Superman. You never know, hopefully JL will surprise us and turn out to be a good movie.
As much as that would be nice thing to look forward to, Justice League looks as promising as Batman v Superman. You never know, hopefully JL will surprise us and turn out to be a good movie.
4:28PM on 06/02/2017
You hit the nail on the head. Amazing movie, everything I wanted it to be and more. And yes, every movie I personally rate a 10 still has a flaw or two. No movie is completely without flaws, just like people.
You hit the nail on the head. Amazing movie, everything I wanted it to be and more. And yes, every movie I personally rate a 10 still has a flaw or two. No movie is completely without flaws, just like people.
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6:19PM on 06/02/2017
Deep
Deep
6:43PM on 06/02/2017
I really didn't mean that to sound deep but now I see that it looks like I was really trying
I really didn't mean that to sound deep but now I see that it looks like I was really trying
1:26PM on 06/02/2017

New standard bearer seems like a reach

If it's not without its flaws, how is it 10/10
If it's not without its flaws, how is it 10/10
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2:57PM on 06/02/2017
What movie isn't without flaws? I haven't seen Wonder Woman so I can't say if it's a 10/10(although I highly doubt it) but hey... Army of Darkness is one of my favorite movies... ever. 10/10 and does it have flaws? Well f-*ck yeah lol but that doesn't make it any less than a 10/10 from me.
What movie isn't without flaws? I haven't seen Wonder Woman so I can't say if it's a 10/10(although I highly doubt it) but hey... Army of Darkness is one of my favorite movies... ever. 10/10 and does it have flaws? Well f-*ck yeah lol but that doesn't make it any less than a 10/10 from me.
6:18PM on 06/02/2017
That doesn't trump how math works, but thanks for the insight
That doesn't trump how math works, but thanks for the insight
6:37PM on 06/02/2017
I think it was meant to read 10/11. You see, most blokes, you know, will be reviewing at ten. They're on ten here, all the way up, all the way up, they're on ten on their keyboard. Where can you go from there? Where? Nowhere. Exactly. So if they need that extra push over the cliff, you know what they do? Put it up to eleven.
I think it was meant to read 10/11. You see, most blokes, you know, will be reviewing at ten. They're on ten here, all the way up, all the way up, they're on ten on their keyboard. Where can you go from there? Where? Nowhere. Exactly. So if they need that extra push over the cliff, you know what they do? Put it up to eleven.
6:41PM on 06/02/2017
Fortunately art is not about math. It's about how it makes you feel. And if the flaws are minor enough that I still feel like a movie aced its goal, then those flaws don't matter.
Fortunately art is not about math. It's about how it makes you feel. And if the flaws are minor enough that I still feel like a movie aced its goal, then those flaws don't matter.
2:28AM on 06/03/2017
So why is the review being quantified with a number? Should the rating just be feeling emojis?
So why is the review being quantified with a number? Should the rating just be feeling emojis?
12:31PM on 06/02/2017

Glad the movie is getting great reviews, but

It really bothers me reading stuff like "Jenkins was absolutely a gamble for a superhero film, but not because she's female." Are there really that many people out there who think women can't do anything right? I know there are some people like that, but I think the majority of us have no problem with a person's gender. We just want someone reliable who we think will do a good job, be it man, woman, or whatever the flavor of the month gender is. Sexism will never go away if people keep making
It really bothers me reading stuff like "Jenkins was absolutely a gamble for a superhero film, but not because she's female." Are there really that many people out there who think women can't do anything right? I know there are some people like that, but I think the majority of us have no problem with a person's gender. We just want someone reliable who we think will do a good job, be it man, woman, or whatever the flavor of the month gender is. Sexism will never go away if people keep making comments like that. Sorry for the rant
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12:36PM on 06/02/2017
That's my entire point. So many people making a thing out of her being female, but that's not the reason she was a gamble, it's because she was untested in this genre as a filmmaker, like anyone that came before and made that leap. I made that quite clear.
That's my entire point. So many people making a thing out of her being female, but that's not the reason she was a gamble, it's because she was untested in this genre as a filmmaker, like anyone that came before and made that leap. I made that quite clear.
1:14PM on 06/02/2017
I know you made that clear. I didn't mean that you felt that way. I was just annoyed that it keeps coming up. I guess I worded it wrong. I feel like most of us don't have a problem with women directing movies, so it doesn't really need to be said. I don't remember seeing people complain just because she's a woman. It's like the Ghostbusters remake. I kept reading how people hated the movie only because it was all women, yet the biggest complaint I heard was that it just wasn't a good movie.
I know you made that clear. I didn't mean that you felt that way. I was just annoyed that it keeps coming up. I guess I worded it wrong. I feel like most of us don't have a problem with women directing movies, so it doesn't really need to be said. I don't remember seeing people complain just because she's a woman. It's like the Ghostbusters remake. I kept reading how people hated the movie only because it was all women, yet the biggest complaint I heard was that it just wasn't a good movie.
1:28PM on 06/02/2017
Jenkins has been especially outspoken in making this a film for everyone and she truly delivers it. My addressing her gender is in response to those that have made it an issue (good or bad), when really the only factor that should've cast any doubt from the beginning was that she was untested in these waters, just like Colin Trevorrow before Jurassic World or the Russo Bros. before Cap: Winter Soldier. We're on the same sheet of music. I find it annoying as well, but, if anything Jenkins has
Jenkins has been especially outspoken in making this a film for everyone and she truly delivers it. My addressing her gender is in response to those that have made it an issue (good or bad), when really the only factor that should've cast any doubt from the beginning was that she was untested in these waters, just like Colin Trevorrow before Jurassic World or the Russo Bros. before Cap: Winter Soldier. We're on the same sheet of music. I find it annoying as well, but, if anything Jenkins has made a film that proves the point that the talent is what makes the film. I hope she doesn't wait too long before getting back in the ring.
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