Perhaps you are aware that I loved Wonder Woman. Let talk about why. I have reasons.
1. Gal Gadot
Gal Gadot is perfection as Diana, Princess of the Amazons. She was superb as Wonder Woman. She was fantastic in the fight scenes. She was calm and collected when everyone around her was frantic. She projected peace and love into every situation. I’m so glad she got the Wonder Woman part in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and that it carried over into the Wonder Woman film. I’m glad she’ll be in the same role in the upcoming Justice League.
Gal Gadot is going to carry this banner for a long time. She deserves all the fame and admiration it will bring her because she is perfection in the role.
Gal Gadot took on a responsibility to all the little girls, all the grown women, and even crones like me when she took on Diana Prince. I think she’s capable of carrying it.
I want to put in a special word to Lynda Carter here. Lynda isn’t giving up her spot to a new Wonder Woman. No, now we have two iconic female heroes, not one. We still love you, Lynda.
2. Patty Jenkins
Patty Jenkins brought home a multi-million dollar superhero franchise movie with record setting success and brilliance. If there’s another movie just for Diana, Patty Jenkins sure as hell better get to direct it. There are hints a sequel is confirmed with her at the helm, but not a lot of news reports yet if it’s true.
3. Connie Nielsen and Robin Wright
As Diana’s mother Hippolyta and aunt Antiope, these two actresses were responsible for raising and training Diana. Connie Nielsen as mom did the moral upbringing, while Robin Wright did the martial arts training. Forget House of Cards. Robin Wright needs her own action movie.
The first act of Wonder Woman was all about her childhood and upbringing. Hippolyta and Antiope projected strength and courage and were role models for Diana to emulate.
4. The Big Bad Guys
Danny Huston as Ludendorff, David Thewlis as Sir Patrick, and Elena Anaya as Dr. Maru were the bad, nasty villains. What is the good character without a worthy opponent? These were worthy opponents. In the final big battle, which was nearly all CGI, Wonder Woman almost lost to Ares (Thewlis). Epic.
5. Wonder Woman Believed in Peace and Second Chances
Diana wasn’t out to kill the bad guys. She wanted them to stop what they were doing. She gave them a chance to reform, do the right thing. None of them wanted to do that. She didn’t understand hatred, greed, and selfishness used to harm others. Wonder Woman possesses emotional intelligence. We need emotional intelligence desperately now. When can we elect Wonder Woman president?
6. The Sexuality was Pretty Tame
I sincerely hope moms everywhere are taking their daughters to this. There was nothing a mom would worry about her 5 year-old daughter seeing.
After Diana rescues Steve Trevor (Chris Pine), there’s a scene where she stares at him naked. She’s just observing. There’s nothing sexual about it. He is embarrassed, not her.
There was one kissing scene between Diana and Steve. Presumably there was sex after that, but we didn’t see it. Diana declared earlier to Steve that men were necessary for reproduction but not for pleasure. (Not that 5 year-old fans will get the nuances of that.)
Diana was inviting about wanting to experience sex with Steve. Her choice, not his. Since Steve rated himself above average in the man department, one can only hope that Diana learned about pleasure with a man from him. (Not that 5 year-old fans will worry about that.)
7. It was Funny
The writing was crisp and funny. Steve Trevor had many funny lines. Most of Diana’s funny lines were cultural observations on the new world of big cities and governments and war. Steve’s secretary Etta (Lucy Davis) had a couple of great lines, too.
8. There was No Giving Up
In the final battle scene, Wonder Woman lost her sword, her shield, her lasso of truth. She did some spectacular fight moves with each of those. When they were gone she fought on bare handed and defeated the enemy that way.
When Diana defeated Ares and realized the awful truth that war did not end, she still continued to work for peace and understanding, love and kindness. Humans, flaws and all, are worth saving.
9. The Male Sidekick Died for Love
It’s the guy who dies for love, not the girl. Steve sacrifices himself to save millions of lives. He did it right after he gave Wonder Woman his watch and told her he loved her. What a guy! We need more men like him. The guy wasn’t the hero – the girl was. He was merely the sidekick to her powerful presence. Talk about flipping the male gaze on its head – yowzaa.
All the Amazon women worked together in peace. They were strong and helpful. It was wonderful seeing so many women together. They weren’t all white. There was an array of colors. Beautiful. The women in roles as Amazons were athletes, even Olympians.
When Diana reached the front, she teamed up with an Arab man (Saïd Taghmaoui), a Native American (Eugene Brave Rock), and a Scottish balladeer (Ewen Bremner) to try to stop the Germans from using poison gas. These were Steve Trevor’s pals. Told you he was a great guy.
That’s my list. Did I include your favorite things?
I want to see Wonder Woman again. Possibly several more times. I’m sure I’ll find 10 different things to love every time I see it. For now I’m content to be happy about the stupendous success of this female powered superhero movie.
A cartoon by Tom Toro, from 2015. pic.twitter.com/hx7dpf9uBr
— The New Yorker (@NewYorker) June 5, 2017
Can Wonder Woman finally drive it into the stubborn skulls of the men in Hollywood that audiences are eager for female driven stories and they make money? Please let it be so.