REVIEW: Wonder Woman 1984
Why is The Dispatch writing a review of a mainstream movie? Well, two reasons:
1.) Because we can!
2.) and more importantly, because what happens in the mainstream affects indie comics, whether we like it or not. New indie creators will, inevitably, try to copy elements of WW84 and work it into future titles.
So, with that in mind, we offer this review of WW84 by Malachi Bailey!Brett
By Hera! I totally and thoroughly enjoyed this fun lil sequel! Now does it measure up to the ground-breaking first one? No. But does it stand on its own by using the foundation and world-building set in motion from the first film? Yes. The first Wonder Woman movie was the first (IMO) stand-alone DC movie that thrilled me from start to finish. I loved seeing the Amazons as breathing, battle-ready soldiers performing remarkable feats. It’s one thing to hear and read about this in the comics, but to see it was breathtaking. The Amazons in the sequel did not disappoint. And there is a cameo (okay, the first of several) I will not spoil that made me smile. Anyway, back to the real star of the movie: Wonder Woman!
- Gal Gadot as Diana/Wonder Woman: I love that she embodies this vulnerability and beauty while at the same time is all kinds of bad ass. You even see it in her interviews. She seems so innocent and altruistic and that translates into her role as the self-styled “Amazing Amazon”. She’s the popular girl who gets along with EVERYONE. And that is also something that Wonder Woman in the comic shares. Case in point, Wonder Woman #184 “She’s A Wonder!” comic in 2001, Lois Lane interviews Diana throughout the day. I remember Diana was playing basketball with the inner-city youth, doing talk show interviews, and donating blood at the local hospital. She did it with such ease, grace, and familiarity. The same Gal did when she interacted with Dr. Barbara Minerva esp. in the beginning. I could go on and on, but let’s just say that DC perfectly cast Gal. And the way she rode the lightning!
- Chris Pine as Steve Trevor: When I heard that Pine was returning, I was shocked considering he died. But then I remembered the no one ever stays dead in comics and if there isn’t a body… I’m glad to always see those sparkling blue eyes and it was creative how they brought him back, but I did expect a little bit more, I can’t lie. And the whole possession thing had its quirky moments, but I would have preferred Steve truly being back in his own flesh. I’m sure y’all noticed he was rocking the Reed Richards silvery temple which was kind of odd to me. Did he age wherever he was? Not sure why they didn’t die his hair. His child-like wonder (heheh) and amazement at the world 66 years later after his death was so endearing and touching.
- Kristen Wig as Dr. Barbara Minerva/Cheetah: Can I just she effin’ KILLED it?! When she was first cast, I did a literal side-eye because all I saw was SNL and “Bridesmaid”. She instilled a sense of quirky humor in Barbara but the transformation building up to the Cheetah was thrilling to behold. She did not come to play! The range she showed in this performance outshone Gal’s on some levels. Especially when they first fought! Kristen, indeed, lived up to her last name: Wig. Because she snatched everyone of them! It would have been cool if she did not have to share the spotlight with the other bad guy. Which leads us to….
- Pedro Pascual as Maxwell Lord: Pedro can do no wrong. Whether he is fighting off “mountains” and caring for big eared younglings in a galaxy far, far away, Pedro is star bound and we are here for it. Wig was not the only one with range. The vulnerability he showed his son felt real and tangible especially considering a flashback to his own roots. As a TV personality, he was slicker than the oil he so desperately wanted. Granted, I did expect for his telepathic powers to emerge, but the ones that developed were in line with the story. The ending was sweet and syrupy. A part of me did want him to get that chiropractor treatment Diana gave him in the comics, ha.
Was the film cheesy? Aesthetically speaking, YES. BUT THAT WAS THE POINT! Granted, I was just a year old in 1984, but I can recall the tail end of the 80’s and remember the oozing cheese. We need the neon lights, the arcades, and the leg warmers! Personally, I was totally here for the fashion show that both Diana and Barbara served us. I’m sure Alexis Carrington would approve.
I also noticed that this film was quite the hot topic! That no doubt stems from Warner Media deciding to release the movie in theaters and HBO Max. I still don’t understand the logic behind it considering we are still very much in the heart of a raging pandemic. Just stream it from the comfort of your home. Like why leave the house?
Some said the plot was garbage and that it made zero sense. I wholeheartedly disagree. It was wish fulfillment plot used in comics. Some of y’all may remember Thanos and his Gems/Stone? Or even the Cosmic Cube? Or if you are an X-Men fanatic like me, you surely know about the M’Kraan Crystal. DC fans (well, the DC comic fans) can bring up powerful objects such as the Cosmic Staff, the Anti-Life/Anti-Death equation, and The Worlogog just to name a few. These insanely powerful items are littered throughout the tapestry that is DC and Marvel. Also… it’s a movie that is about a woman with a magic lasso. So realistic, right? I know that people are very passionate about how they dislike this, and you know what? That is okay. It’s their right. Just don’t attack those who found joy in watching this sequel. No one asked for it. Return to sender. But since I wrote the review, now I’m asking for your thoughts. What did you think of Wonder Woman 1984?