A Heroic First Step: The Uphill Battle in Wonder Woman

Even beginning to critique Patty Jenkins’ 2017 Wonder Woman is like training with the Amazons on Themyscira, and sadly, this is a movie that will, and needs to, be critiqued harder than any other comic book adaptation that has come before it. Not only should it be intelligently reviewed because it’s the most recent, (these adaptations should be getting better, right?) but because it aims to take on the heftier issues our world faces today. Let it be known that in recent years I have fallen off the superhero bandwagon, not missing all of the DC or Marvel films, but certainly bypassing a good chunk of them. I’m not one to be wowed by the sis-boom-bah of these inconceivably high-octane projects unless there’s something much more engaging under the explosions, and I think a lot of these films have fallen flat in the most recent years. That being said, shelling out money for Wonder Woman is vastly important and about so much more than the cost of admission.

We’re at an important crossroads in cinematic history, and as much as I wish this had come earlier, and with a film other than Wonder Woman at its apex, the money Hollywood rakes in from this film will begin to affect the diversity of projects brought to the silver screen even more so than projects in the past. I’ve made my monetary contribution, like giving alms for the underappreciated and lacking roles represented on screen, and now all I have left are my words. Really digging into Wonder Woman is a difficult feat because this film is supposed to mean so much to so many different people, as it very well should. The film serves a multi-faceted purpose, and while it’s nearly impossible to tackle every single viewpoint, I think it’s best to critique it through three lenses: Is this film successful in the superhero genre? What does the film Wonder Woman bring to the conversation of feminism? Is Diana Prince the hero we want, or just the hero we need?