Wonder Woman 1984: Review
Halfway towards the end things start becoming questionable, didn’t line up, and became a crash course of a disaster.
After watching the very anticipated Wonder Woman 1984, I must say that this movie was good from the start until it reached a point where they dropped the ball and seemed like they did not know what to do further with the characters, which was very disappointing. But allow me to break down what had happened.
The begining of the end
We start with a small back story with Diana as a child competing against other older Amazonians warriors looking like the bunch's oddball. Quite frankly, I think a teenage Diana would have been more befitting for this moment, but I digress. During her run through this triathlon, she almost seems like she's getting the better of the other warriors but then falls short, literally, and becomes overconfident, and it cost her when she wasn't paying attention fell off her horse. Diana then takes a shortcut in order not only to get ahead of the Amazonians but to catch her horse that bypasses the other marker she needs to show that she is on the right path like the other. In the end, when she is about to throw her javelin through the ring, her aunt/mentor, Antiope, prevents her from doing so because she cheated. When Diana becomes furious, Antiope cuts her off and says, "That is the truth, that is the only truth, and the truth is all there is. You cannot be the winner because you are not ready to win. And there is no shame in that." Se would continue after crouching down to her level, "Only in knowing the truth in your heart and not accepting it. No true hero is born from lies." Keep these quotes in mind because we're going to get back to them.
Let's fast forward just a bit. We kick off with Diana being a classic hero and being the heroine we love. Seeing her saving loves, stopping crime, and even showing a bit of charm while rocking those stylish boots. I enjoyed this scene because the tone was different compared to Snyder's run of DC, and it felt like I was reading a comic book honestly.
Chris Pine's return as Steve Rogers was probably my favorite part of the movie as I enjoyed the script's flip with the fish out of the water theme. Now, Steve is introduced into this new world he hasn't been a part of since he died, and now Diana is showing him around. Every moment and interaction that he has with the year of the 80s was a convincing performance of how awed the character was by the advancements of everything, and I must say Chris Pine did an excellent job conveying those moments.
Now let's get our villains of the story; Maxwell Lord, played by Pedro Pascal, and Barbara Minerva, the third Cheetah, played by Kristen Wiig, who will later become the fabled arch-nemesis of our heroine. Minerva and Diana both work at the Smithsonian but Minerva, in this film, is not an archeologist but a gemologist, geologist, lithologist, and part-time cryptozoologist. Minerva is a dorky character in this iteration; however, she genuinely warm and personable nature during the brief moments we had with her, unlike her original from the comics. I felt this could work later on since the history between Diana and her has always been that she wants to be better than Diana in every way. With the Dreamstone acquired from the heist that took place earlier in the first act, Barbara wishes to become more like Diana after being saved from a drunk in the park. Thus jump-starting her character progress as she feels more attractive, becomes more confident, and starts gaining incredible strength, but at the cost of what made her genuine, her humanity. Throughout this movie, Kristen Wiig performed this version of Barbara Minerva great because you feel like this is going somewhere and that the build-up will be worth it in the end.
After the Dreamstone, Lord is also for more of a business need at first to help bolster his oil company. Granted, when he acquires the stone, he makes the wish to become the stone being able to contribute his wishes by allowing others to make it for him as long as he hasn't granted their wish before, at a cost. I should also mention that the Dreamstone is like the Monkey's Paw to get your desire, but something personal will be taken away. As for this character representing a particular political figure, I could not see it nor care. Pedro Pascal's performance was almost campy with overacting as if he was trying too much to be the salesman. I couldn't even feel anything with the father and son bit, and it had no place in the movie even towards the end.
In conclusion, the movie was ok, but it was not garbage or trash. Let's keep in mind that we cannot sum up how much this movie could have made in theaters without the pandemic being an ongoing issue. Gal Gadot is Wonder Woman, and she plays the character well. I would also love to add that her wardrobe was well selected; white is her color. However, the drawback of this film is that it felt like she was not the center focus and was outshined by the supporting characters; not only that, but this film should have been able to show how powerful Wonder Woman indeed is compared to when we see Henry Cavill's Superman that shows his full strength against Zod. Halfway through the movie, it seemed they did not know what to do with the villains and certain moments felt like a "wtf why?". For example, although I do like they added how she learned how to fly through Steve Trevor giving her a life lesson about flying and implementing it to allowing her to tap into her power further, it felt kind of pointless to have to use the lasso to ride the lightning when you can fly. To add more to that, you are left wondering what the point in having Barbara transform if you were going to have her revert back to normal at the end was? I had to give it some thought, and she might not have revoked her wish but might still have the Cheetah powers and can transform at will, but that's a theory for another time. Last but not least, Lord's story arc felt like a missed opportunity for DC to follow through in the comics where Wonder Woman is supposed to kill him. In this case, to save many lives and to stop the Dreamstone was to destroy it or revoke your wish. Disappointing.
I enjoyed it until halfway towards the end, and things start becoming questionable, didn't line up, and almost seemed redundant. Plus, the movie's meaning seemed like more of "be careful what you wish for" rather than the initial lesson from the beginning. "Only in knowing the truth in your heart and not accepting it. No true hero is born from lies."
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