I will be spoiling some of the movie if you don’t want to be spoiled don’t read. You have been warned.
I went to go see Wonder Woman June 1st @ the 7:00 pm show. It was shown in Real 3D. I was nervous about it. All my hopes, dreams, and expectations of this movie (40+ years) were going to be forever changed.I also went to see it again on June 3rd with my niece and nephew.
I never thought that I would never see a Feminist Wonder Woman in a 150 million dollar film directed by a woman. At best, my fear was that they would cast a woman who was all tits and ass to fill a masturbatory role to stroke male egos. When Gal Gadot was cast in the role, the first comments, were about her tit size, they weren’t big enough. Many women objected that her tits weren’t small enough. With the state of women in print comics and how they are drawn, I was worried. Worried that it would all about tits and ass.
I was wrong, happily so. The movie is a Feminist movie. It’s a must see movie. Some so feminists are saying that the first 15 minutes didn’t pass the Bechdel Test. I strongly disagree. It was about Diana making her own choices in her life, breaking with her mother. Other feminists decrying Wonder Woman because it’s not inclusive enough, or that she isn’t a woman of color. Some are even pointing to the actor herself, because she is an Israeli citizen.
Wonder Woman is a complex character who has a warm and loving heart. She born in privilege to be the princess of the Amazons. We learn that Queen Hippolyta formed Diana out of clay and asked Zeus to give Diana life, and he did. Later we find out that Diana was the daughter of Queen Hippolyta and Zeus. She was the only child on the Island of Themyscira and the Queen wanted her to remain a child for as long as she could and wouldn’t let Diana train with the other Amazon.
Hippolyta was afraid that Diana would die or be hurt at the hands of Ares and kept her away from Amazon training. This caused angst between her and her mother even from a young age. Diana was determined to be as every bit of a warrior as her mother and aunt were.
I remember watching one reviewer who said that the first 15 minutes was like a good meal that was over before you were fully satisfied. The battle scene on the beach was amazing, it was far too short but to see a female 300 scene was just amazing.
I felt that way too. I wanted to see more of her training more of her self-reflection. The one problem I did have with this movie, is for some strange reasons Zack Snyder didn’t allow a lapse of time between events, they seemed (except for the very beginning) all happening within days of each other and showing some kind of plot device to show the reason it would take an overnight sleep on a sailboat (that Diana wasn’t aware of) to get to London from (I assume) the Aegean Sea near Turkey, even if towed by a tug.
I loved the visuals in Wonder Woman, the beautiful colors. Themyscira is a Utopia world where nothing bad has happened since the Amazon’s made it their home. It is protected from the outside world by Zeus. The Amazons study languages, learn weaponry and have a female positive society. They know nothing of mankind or it’s war, protected from the War God himself. Ares did admit he whispers in the ears of those who want to harm, destroy, and corrupt, but doesn’t tell people to do the things they do, he (magnanimous) just watches taking pleasure in the destruction of his father’s favorite creatures. He in many ways sounds like many of the MRA and 4Chan activists who do not take responsibility for their own actions.
Although, Ares is a man, not all men are bad. Steve Trevor, is a good man. He stands behind her and allows her to make decisions on her own, although at times he is frustrated by those choices.
Although Ares, Dr. Poison, and General Ludendorff are the villains, they were overshadowed by the biggest villain, and that is war itself, not as in the god of war, but rather the plague of war and how it affects everyone. War destroys the mind as we see Charlie struggling with PTSD and how he could no longer function as the trained sniper. We see Sameer, reduced playing into racial stereotypes in order to get closer to the bad guys, and we see the complex Chief who doesn’t fight for anyone because he has no home left to go to.
War changes the life of everyone, even the Princess of the Amazons, who didn’t believe her mother about war. To this point for Diana, no one lost their life (in her world – sure she heard the tales of her mother), the battle was always in a protection of those who she trained with and who were training her. It became real when she looses her aunt. She believed that if she just killed Ares then the war would end, people would be good and decent and choose love over anger, hate, and resentment.
At the end, she realizes that killing Ares will not stop the war, but being true to herself, allowing others to do what needed to be done will make the difference.
Patty Jenkins says that she went for the simple superhero movie. I don’t think that this movie was “simple” but rather complex. It showed that superheroes can love and can bring hope.