Let’s step away from the controversy for a second and consider: Wonder Woman. The film, starring Gal Gadot and directed by Patty Jenkins, is the latest entry in the DC Cinematic Universe.
It is the first superhero film in that universe fronted by a woman superheroine, then something which, to the project’s credit, the Marvel Cinematic Universe has yet to attempt.
But underneath all the hub, the hype, and the hope, is Wonder Woman any good?
Well, everyone agrees on one thing: it’s the best entry in the DC Cinematic Universe, an enterprise which has so far included Man of Steel (2013), Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice (2016), and Suicide Squad (2016). No wonder, then; not one of these was much good.
Onto the reviews:
The Guardian hated the film, and it’s all in the headline: “Glass ceiling still intact as Gal Gadot reduced to weaponised Smurfette.” Two stars.
The AV Club thinks the film is too long and “intermittently enjoyable,” criticizing the film’s style: “That extends, unfortunately, to the movie’s final act, when the bombastic CGI-on-CGI slugfest lurking beneath the story comes racing to the surface, burying the human elements in another gaudy display of slow-motion, light-show asskickery.” B-, which isn’t too bad.
The New York Times says: ““Wonder Woman” tells an interesting, not entirely predictable story,” but quantifies that by saying the climax “reverts, inevitably and disappointingly, to dreary, overblown action clichés.”
Entertainment Weekly was smitten: “It’s hard to quibble about what’s wrong with a movie that gets so much right, especially when it comes to Gadot’s revelatory portrayal of Wonder Woman. The wait is over, folks. The DC movie you’ve been waiting for has finally arrived.” (To be honest, I wasn’t waiting for any superhero movies to blow me away, but I’m happy for that reviewer.)
Roling Stone’s Peter Travers liked the film, though he hated how gloomy it was: “The stunts are showstopping, but the deep-dish thinking is hell on the film’s pacing and its sense of fun. Unlike Marvel films, where the dark stuff is mostly subtext, DC tends to smother high spirits in a blanket of gloom.”
indieWire gave the film a positive review, stating: “This Diana is startlingly pure of heart and clear-eyed in her vision. She’s a neat sort-of throwback to the circa-1978 “Superman,” which was similarly anchored by a superhero of intense goodness. It’s a fine counterpoint in a franchise so often given over to so-called “dark and gritty” sensibilities.”
So few are completely in love, but it’s gotten fairly decent reviews.