I was inordinately excited for it (Wondy's been my 2nd favorite CB character next to Spiderman for a long time), but also worried that it wouldn't live up to the hype. Glad to say that I was completely wrong there.
The movie is so well paced and has great contrasts from scene to scene (the transition from Themyscira to London was stark, and yet both environments felt real, and very well done). Then as they trudged forth to "The Front" it captured the contrast of the beauty of Diana's home, the bustling New York vibe of industrialized London, and then the desolation of war-torn Europe spectacularly. The cinematography was so on-point.
Going from this:
Was such a great contrast. I loved the WW1 setting, and I love Greek Mythology (one of the reasons WW is among my favorite comics). I never thought a mix would work, but it did.
I was one of the fence-sitters when Gadot was picked for the film and was worried we'd have another Cavill (beauty with no brains), but I ate my words for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. She nailed the role perfectly. It was one of those "born to play it" performances that you only get seemingly once a decade (the easiest one to spring to mind is RDJ as Tony Stark and before that, Hugh Jackman as Wolverine). Seeing her go from excited and goofy (a baby!), to confused (when the assassins showed up and she saw the misogyny of the early 1900s), to horrified (when seeing the injured soldiers), to determined (when talking to the people fleeing from the front lines and the looting/pillaging), was great. Chris Pine nailed his role as Steve Trevor and played off of Gadot so well. I knew Pine was a good actor, but I had no idea Gadot had so much range in her, I was laughing at the fish-out-of-water one minute then going "yea fuck up some proto-Nazis!" the next. They were splendid together. "Can we freeze him like they did Steve Rogers?", I thought., wistfully
And then this shit happened:
I was shook, to the core. I just sat there with my jaw about to disconnect from my face.
How could anyone make Wonder Woman in a WW1 setting using the Lasso of Truth look legit on film? Patty Jenkins should be arrested for sorcery.
I had heard a few people griping about the "last act" and still wasn't sure when or what they even meant. After viewing it, I honestly still don't. Was it the bar/night scene with Diana and Steve? That was beautiful. The singing and her seeing snow for the first time and the joy in humanity's hearts in the midst of war was so well done. The Gala/Castle scene had me on edge because I was wondering if it was gonna be some huge shitshow of Diana fighting a bunch of German soldiers in the middle of a dance party, and I was wondering if there was any foreshadowing to Steve saying Diana might not know for certain if Ludendorff is Ares (but the cutaways to him huffing the gas and glowing like some kind of demon kept me distracted). The scene where they gassed the town was stark in showing the horrors of war, and I thought Gadot did a great job showing Diana's horror at seeing what mankind is capable of. You could see the seeds of doubt planted in her mind as to what she truly thought of humanity (setting up the penultimate scenes with her and the big-bad perfectly). Her fight with Steve and their separation had me wondering pretty hard what was to come. Anyway, I digress.
To the ending!
While I typically can see most twists a mile away, I did not see the Ares one coming. When she stormed the airfield/poison factory, and battled with Ludendorff, at first I was kind of annoyed because the film had been so great up to that point... I thought "Man there's no way Ares goes out like some fucking jobber..." and I thought back to the 2008 WW Animated Film (which I adore) that ends with that epic fight between her and Ares.
I had come to peace with the fact that I would never get to see Diana, Princess of Themyscira, and Ares, God of War, go toe-to-toe. It was still an awesome film up to that point and I figured hell maybe Dr. Moreau (is that how its spelled? kind of funny if so) turns into Cheetah or something. And then...
SIR PATRICK IS ARES WHAT!?!
That guy I dismissed as the kooky guy that bankrolls the team's adventure and then wants to control them but knows he can't, the archetype you find in some films...
But would they go all out? Is this Ares' disembodied form after she killed his physical one? What's going on?
And then... LIGHTNING EXPLOSION... and then...
After 30+ years on this Earth, I finally get to see Diana battle Ares!!
Would they fuck it up?
No! This is Patty Jenkins!
So I wondered - what will happen? Along with thoughts of "I hope Steve lives, I love Steve!"
Sadly it was not to be. His acting at the end, saying goodbye to Diana, and then in the plane, had such range within such short time. I shed a manly tear when he took his final breath.
And then... OH HELL NO NOT STEVE!!
And then... wait... a moment of clarity in the midst of Diana going apeshit? What's happening?
I loved this scene. It showed such contrast between the hero that Diana is and will become, and the monster that Ares is (while the entire time trying to convince her otherwise).
Then... FINAL BATTLE!
Just like the No Man's Land scene, I was stuck to my chair, having my brain melted by what I was seeing on screen. They did it! The crazy bastards brought out the real Ares!! Him assembling his armor from the wreckage of everything around him was glorious, and the final fight was by far the most satisfying of any comic book film I can remember since Spider-Man 2. Diana going full DBZ on Ares and blasting him into a dust-crater was so fucking satisfying. I had been waiting so long to see this happen in live action and they finally did it, and they did it so well.
The decision to show her recalling these events in modern-day, and looking back on her origin was fantastic. I really hope they do the next DCEU films justice (no pun intended) because Wonder Woman set one really high bar.
Gadot, Pine, and Patty nailed it. What a great movie. My new favorite CB film, overtaking even the glorious Spider-Man 2.
*apologies for any typos or rambling as I am sick at work writing this up so I can stay awake :D
Not to be a dick, but the film is still in theatres so I think you could just bump the OT.
It's been almost 3 months since the film came out, its coming to digital at the end of the month, and bumping the OT for a post this big seemed silly, sorry
Yeah, not really LTTP when the movie is still in theaters and still hasn't even opened in all markets (Japan premiere still yet to happen).