Wonder Woman – Film Review
Director: Patty Jenkins
Writers: Allan Heinberg (screenplay), Zack Snyder (story by)
Stars: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright
Diana has lived on her island for her whole life, never wondering what is outside. The island is a paradise of sorts, filled with extraordinary women capable of dazzling feats. They call themselves the Amazons, although nothing to do with the on-line seller, and Diana is their princess. Her back story is slightly dubious as her mother claims that she was sculpted from clay and that Zeus gave her life, but we’ll give it and her the benefit of the doubt. She has lived a quiet life until a first world war bomber lands in the sea just off the island. She swims to the plane and pulls the hapless Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) from the wreckage. He is followed by a number of German soldiers, who land on the island and battle with the local ladies. And so Diana becomes immersed in this war of men. She heads to France to the front line to battle Ares, the Greek God of War, who she believes has started this conflict.
So far, so perfectly average. This is the latest in the DC/ Warner stable of super hero movies. It follows closely behind Suicide Squad and Bats vs Supes, two films that took a beating from the critics, but still managed to do well at the box office. It makes you question the purpose of reviews at all, considering how little faith the public puts in them! I shall continue on regardless, in the hope that these words will hold some sway with the readers who have continued this far.
The director of this film is also female, which is another departure. Patty Jenkins previously mainly worked in TV, with Entourage and The Killing, so this is quite a set up! Managing a beast of a film like any superhero flick is quite a feat and for a first effort, it’s fairly flawless.
So, what is different about this effort? There is considerable merit in this film being about a female superhero, to put it bluntly. The world of heroism is testosterone heavy and it’s great to see little girls in the cinema looking up at their own hero. Gal Gadot gets her portrayal of the Amazonian spot one. She is like a Greek exchange student, lost to our modern ways and far too good looking for any of the local lads. Chris Pine just about does enough to warrant his inclusion. He has little acting ability beyond a cheeky grin, but his part as Diana’s love interest doesn’t demand much. There are also lots of great bit parts, Robin Wright plays Diana’s rather intense Auntie Antiope. Danny Huston shouts and scowls as German bad guy Ludendorff. Even David Thewlis gets away with the unusual double edged sword of Sir Patrick.
If you’re expecting something quite profound or unique, it’s sadly not here. This film does not turn the genre on its head and plays by many of the normal conventions. The main merits are Gal Gadot and the number of impressive smaller parts in the film. For fans of the 70’s TV show all the elements are here, with the wonderfully trashy lasso of truth included! It has done enough to warrant the attention it is receiving, and makes Batman and Superman look like the wimps they are!