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Wonder Woman 1984 (2020) | Film Review | Love first. Saving the world later.

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Wonder Woman 1984 Cast

Gal Gadot … Diana Prince (WONDER WOMAN)
Chris Pine … Steve Trevor
Kristen Wiig … Barbara Minerva
Pedro Pascal … Maxwell Lord
Robin Wright … Antiope
Connie Nielsen … Hippolyta
Lilly Aspell … Young Diana

Wonder Woman 1984 Storyline and my Opinion

Today i’m going to be reviewing wonder woman 1984 a love story. Spanning decades combined with a woman who wants to be a big cat may sound like a tricky combination. But somehow they made it work so hold your lasso of truth and hear me out.

Wonder woman 1984 catches up with our titular hero almost 70 years after the first film. Diana is working as a senior anthropologist at the Smithsonian institute in Washington dc and encounters a strange artefact.

Through it and bad guy max lord civilization is brought to the brink of annihilation. Our hero is forced to once again save the world. The good thing about superhero sequels is that they are usually unburdened by origin story exposition which necessitates the many lengthy runtimes of the genre.

This film is largely free from flashbacks apart from a select few montages that explain the backstory behind specific things. Such as where the fancy gold armor came from. The main flashback scene we get is right at the start after another voiceover introduction. We see young Diana participating in an Olympic-style competition amongst her Amazonian family.

Lily Aspell who plays young Diana is absolutely amazing in this scene. And is potentially the most badass child actress doing most of her own stunts. You can really feel the joy and disappointment so strongly and honestly. She is a perfect wonder woman as is gal Gadot. Gal Gadot is a breath-taking actress in many ways. Not only is she absolutely stunning and genuinely looks like she could be a god but she also seems comfortable in the role.

I find when watching many superhero films that some actors look a little awkward in their roles. And i know it must be difficult to pretend to have powers and act against a green screen but definitely some people pull it off better than others. So on the one hand you have this great performance by Gal Gadot. But on the other hand you have the CGI which was a little weird.

They used these ultra-slow motion segments during the epic fight sequences. And this style of filming and cutting of action reminded me a lot of 300 which was directed by zack Snyder. The producer of both wonder woman films. However despite being 10 years older and renowned for its exaggerated style 300 action sequences actually felt less fake than the ones in wonder woman.

I think this could be down to something as simple as focus in both films from the franchise. I noticed that everything and everyone surrounding the person who’s fighting and doing those epic moves is out of focus. Whilst in 300 the other people fighting are also in focus.

I think this helped make the non-naturalistic moves feel more embedded in realism. And i think that would have helped the fights in this film feel much better. It would not have helped the character of the cheetah. However who leapt straight into the realms of uncanny valley with this weird human cat hybrid that i doubt made anyone feel anything but uneasy. Whilst the cheetah was still Barbara Minerva she was a great character portrayed by Kristen Wiig who i think got the balance between comedy and drama exactly right. However as soon as the cheetah is born things get a little stereotypical villain. Her villainy didn’t feel motivated especially since she had just become such good friends with Diana.

On the topic of villains i did enjoy Maxwell lord. Yes Pedro Pascal’s performance is quite bombastic. It certainly lacks the subtle terror of both heath ledgers and Joaquin phoenix’s jokers. But they’re a very different type of villain. Lord is a TV personality he has the gift of the gab and that is how he entices people.

Most importantly though he is a father and this is where the film surprised me the most. It’s an emotional story driven by love both familial and romantic. The love story between Diana and Steve is possibly a little overbearing for anyone who doesn’t believe in true love and the idea that Diana hasn’t moved on for this many years is simultaneously ridiculous and very romantic.

Part of me thinks that as an immortal being this amount of time is minuscule for Diana. And my belief in their connection is strong enough to accept that her heartache would last this long or perhaps can last this long considering how long she has. Speaking of length there were some scenes that felt cheesy and wholly unnecessary.

Adding to the run time without contributing enough to the story. One of these is right near the start where wonder woman uses her powers to save people from frankly avoidable everyday trips and falls. Ill-fitting for a hero of her calibre.

In another section near the end without spoiling it we get what i would call a Bruce almighty montage cold war edition. It was far too long and it felt like they were trying too hard to elicit an emotional response when actually Diana and Max lord’s conversation was enough to do this in itself. I won’t beat around the bush here. I cried sat in that dark cinema treated to the spectacle of flying, through fireworks, and lassoing lightning bolts. I was in awe.

It is definitely one of those films that deserves to be watched in a cinema to have the visuals engulf you and the sound hold you from every angle. It is really a shame to consider how many people are going to miss out on this experience because of this most terrible year.

In terms of visuals i loved what they did with the 80 setting. The production design was immaculate and deeply satisfying. And the camera moved in a way so as to showcase the impressive sets. Though i can’t quite describe how they did this without seeing the film again. And the clothing oh wow you thought Diana’s outfits were amazing in the first film.

Well she absolutely ups the ante in this one. Barbara’s outfits were splendid as well and the juxtaposition between the two is well established. I definitely was surprised to see how much comedy can be wrought out of a single fanny pack that’s for sure. The only thing they missed out on is the music .they had this beautiful score and the wonder woman motif came out in the perfect moments. But there was no 80s music considering how big budget this film is they absolutely had enough money to license a few hits. And this would have added a whole other layer of fun. And they teased us in the trailer with blue Monday by new order. But there was nothing in the film. Such a missed opportunity.

Overall wonder woman 1984 has some scenes that it could have done without and CGI that could use a bit of adjusting to make the superhero action more palatable. However for me the positives assuredly outweigh the negatives making it an enjoyable cinematic experience with brilliant performances amazing production design and a driven story.

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