Film Review: WONDER WOMAN (USA 2017)

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wonder woman.jpgBefore she was Wonder Woman she was Diana, princess of the Amazons, trained warrior. When a pilot crashes and tells of conflict in the outside world, she leaves home to fight a war to end all wars, discovering her full powers and true destiny.

Director: Patty Jenkins
Writers: Allan Heinberg (screenplay), Zack Snyder (story by)
Stars: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright, Connie Nielsen, Danny Huston,
David Thewlis

Not to be confused with the two other WONDER WOMAN films made in 2009 and 2014, this updated expensive $149 million film has been marketed well and is one of the most anticipated films this summer.

Gal Gadot is WONDER WOMAN though the term WONDER WOMAN is never used even once in the film. She is known as Diana. The character played by Gadot, and reasonably well by her, combining sexiness and a certain ferocity was first introduced to excited audiences in BATMAN V. SUPERMAN. She gained 17 lbs. of muscle while training in martial arts for the role. Now audiences can see her for a full 140 minutes or so.

Diana first appears as a little girl fiercely intent on becoming a fighter much to the chagrin of her mother, the queen (Connie Nielson). Diana’s aunt who is also the general (Robin Wright) trains her eventually to become the warrior with special gifts destined to save the world as it is written in the Book of the Gods. The film’s voiceover informs that Diana is made from clay by the God Zeus and she must destroy the evil Ares before mankind is destroyed. As such this bevy of beauties appropriately named Amazons live on a Greek-like paradise island till a World War plane crashes into the waters nearby with the pilot, Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) saved by Diana. How the two worlds collided is never fully explained.

With the world of the Gods brought into the human realm, the film grows more interesting. Diana is drawn into fight against the Germans in WW1. The trouble with all this is that Diana, Trevor and a assorted troupe of fighters kill Germans one by one to save innocent people as well as allied soldiers. This is a very simplistic look of things as German soldiers killed are people too. The script does attempt to discuss this problem but not too convincingly. Diana is shown to be naive as to the human world, with humour thrown in whenever possible.

For a $149 million production, there are as expected, lots of special effects and pyro-technics. In addition, there are a lot of sexy fighting (but ridiculous) poses by Diana.

The film contains three villains as if one is not enough. David Thewlis plays the main one, The God of War Ares in human form. The other two villains are more comical than sinister, two Germans, one a female doctor, humorously named Dr. Poison (Elena Anaya) with a disfigured face and the other a sinister German General Erich Ludendorff (Danny Huston) who will stop at nothing to win the war.

Business wise, WONDER WOMAN cost $149 million to make, thus requiring to gross at least $460 million worldwide to break even. The estimate for the opening domestic weekend is $100 million so it likely will bring Warner Bros. a tidy profit.

The fourth film of the DC Comic Universe after SUPERMAN, BATMAN V. SUPERMAN and SUICIDE SQUAD, WONDER WOMAN is the best of the lot with a good combination of action and tongue-in-cheek humour. But that is not saying much considering how awful the first 3 were.

Trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VSB4wGIdDwo

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