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wonder-woman

Review: Wonder Woman

Ros Hull

Before 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. IMDb.

I don’t want to talk about the few glitches in the film, which other reviewers are having a field day with (modern dialogue and the sound of a zipper in WW1 seem to have everyone’s teeth on edge. I could speak of empowerment, of role models, of it’s-about-bloody-time but instead, I want to talk about the entertainment quality of the film itself. Which cans be summed up in two words:

It. Rocks.

If I had to say why in a nutshell, I would single out Diana’s work ethic. She does not sit in a pool of her own angst (boo, hoo my parents are dead … sniffle, I’m an alien from another planet) she sees destruction and pain and she works to stop it. Her dark teatime of the soul lasts but a few minutes and then its ‘Right, I’m the hero, let’s get on with stopping the war.’

In short, she behaves like a hero without apologising for being one. But the film is much more than just that.

Starting with life on Themisycara the whole film has such a great big budget look and feel it made me happy. The Amazons look and behave like true warriors and come in a variety of athletic shapes. Both Hippolyta (Connie Nielson) and her sister and chief badass, Antiope (Robin Wright) look amazing – fit, strong, comfortable with their age and gorgeous. The way they train and the island itself is appropriately mythical.

I have no idea why the reviewer for The Australian thought that section of the story was too long, I loved it. In fact, I barely noticed the time go by.

It feels quite appropriate that Patty Jenkins directed this production, not because of her sex or her weighty cinematic work (Monster) but because she is primarily a TV director. We are in a new golden age of TV and this is the one place DC Comics seem to be getting it right in a Marvel dominated world. So don’t mess with your winning streak.

All the actors are excellent – Chris Pine plays a great part, adding colour and depth to, but never overshadowing, Diana’s development. David Thewlis, Danny Huston and Ewen Bremner are richly supportive, as they always are and it was a treat to see Saïd Taghmaoui in a role where he gets to be flip and charming.

The action is hefty, full screen mayhem and the depiction of the devastation of a world war adds to the gravitas of the creation of Wonder Woman. We see her changing from a sheltered potential to a wise warrior as the film progresses.

That the story is bookended by her modern Supes and Batgrump filled life gives the whole thing a bittersweet quality, as all her comrades from the photo we glimpsed in Batman v Superman are only mortal and therefore she is now alone.

Roslyn saw this film as a guest of Limelight Cinemas. 

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Ros Hull

Roslyn is a writer and storyteller who loves all things Canberra, her family, sci fi and movies – but not in that order. She has worked in museum education since 2001 and has a passion for imparting knowledge to others. Writing is her happy place, particularly if there is a dog at her feet and a coffee in her hand. More about the Author

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