With the release Wonder Woman from DC, one might “wonder” what the purpose is. DC seems to be attempting to build a universe but I don’t think they’re at the level Marvel is with their superhero flicks. I liked this film a little more than Dawn of Justice, but that’s not saying much.
Director Patty Jenkins takes the screenplay from Allan Heinberg and turns it into 141 minutes of underdeveloped characters, a seemingly tired story, and a derivative plot. Heinberg, Zack Snyder, and Jason Fuchs developed the story.
This is the origin of Wonder Woman, aka Diana Prince (Gal Gadot), who was seen in last year’s Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice. I suppose the film did its job by introducing the character and telling her story, but it just didn’t catch my interest that much. That is to say it didn’t hold my sustaining interest through the film that much.
The film seemed to reflect Captain America where a hero is seen out of time. This character is one where I don’t know much about either. The film begins when Diana is a young girl with an urgent need to train and fight like the other women of the island, but her mother won’t let her. But of course, she ultimately begins to train and Diana learns how to handle herself in battle.
Flash forward a few years when Diana is older. The story advances.
Through an unexplained time warp thing, a pilot crashes in the ocean off the shores of Themyscira. Diana saves him. Captain Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) tells the women of this great war in which Diana believes to be influenced by the god Ares. Determined to stop the God of War she returns with Captain Trevor to put an end to Ares’ reign.
Diana tries to fit in. Steve tries to help her. He finds some help to track down some bad guys. Diana and Steve begin to fall in love. He sacrifices himself to help save the world. Diana realizes her true potential and….
I won’t spoil it for those that haven’t seen it yet, but I imagine most of you have. And if you have, then you know what happens.
I suppose the fault I find with this film (and all the DC films I’ve seen) is that it just doesn’t sustain my interest. I mean they do have somewhat interesting stories, but the polished delivery is not there for me. I don’t know what it is about these DC films thus far, but that’s how I’ve viewed all of them. They seem to drag in a lot of places and it really messed with the timing and pacing for me to really enjoy.
For the most part, the acting was average. I don’t believe there was anything special. Gadot portrayed the character with a sense of determination and strong will with just enough of a sense of heroism that came across in the film at times, but most of the time her performance seemed quiet and reserved. Pine was decent enough with his character but it was nothing spectacular. Connie Nielsen plays Queen Hippolyta, Diana’s mother, with the love and protection only a mother can give. Diana’s aunt, Antiope (Robin Wright) trains Diana into the strong, determined woman Diana becomes. Rounding out the good guys (and providing much humor and light heartedness in the film) were Ewen Bremner, Eugene Brave Rock, and Said Taghmaoui.
The villains seemed to be added on in this story. There were some twists to know the identity of the actual evil arch nemesis, the god Ares. General Ludendorff (Danny Huston) and a mad scientist Doctor Maru nicknamed Doctor Poison played by Elena Anaya, didn’t really seem to play much of a role in the film as one might be led to believe. Honestly, I thought if these characters weren’t in the film as much as they were or maybe only mentioned, the film could have cut some time off and still told the story it wanted to tell.
I believe the film set up the story and main plot well enough for the characters and the audience to see, but it was the execution of the second and third acts with its slow-moving plot points and character and story development that was somewhat incongruent. That takes me out of a film every time. Every. Time.
Some might have enjoyed this film. Some might have really loved this film. But again, I couldn’t really get on board with this DC film like the ones before. I wanted to like it more. In fact going in, I thought, “maybe this is the DC film I will enjoy.” But not so much. I want to like these DC films. I want to enjoy them. But I just can’t. Maybe Justice League will be better. But I’m not getting my hopes up.