I wanted to start off by saying that Wonder Woman’s real MVP is its director, Patty Jenkins. As far as I’m aware, Ms Jenkins has only directed one other film, 2003’s Monster – one of my all time favourites. If I knew this fact before going into the cinema, I wouldn’t have been shocked at the film’s assured and damn near faultless direction. From beginning to end, this film was solid. It had plenty of chances to go off the rails, especially with CGI and fight scenes, but it just kept being solid as a rock.
Wonder Woman’s biggest achievement is that it doesn’t feel like a superhero movie. If you had told me Christopher Nolan was directing this film, I would have believed you. Yes it features Greek mythology, yes you have an overly powerful figure in an absurd outfit, but time and again Jenkins make you believe everything that is happening on screen could happen (or more accurately, did happen) in real life.
Another one of the film’s strengths is it’s war story – World War I is not just a backdrop. The film doesn’t shy away from the horrors of war and the duplicitous nature of people on all sides of a war. This film is a lot darker and thematically complex than it has any right to be. It just kept surprising me at how it didn’t shy away from potentially controversial discussions and themes.
Gal Gadot deserves every single bit of credit thrown at her. While Lynda Carter will always be Wonder Woman for many folks, Gadot is an absolute revelation. She is stunning in this movie and without her everything falls apart. Chris Pine once again shows that he is a very underrated actor …
…and David fucking Thewlis!
The truth is Wonder Woman doesn’t reach the heights that Nolan’s Batman films did in this genre, but I think Wonder Woman will change the game. This film will be genre defining.