Wonder Woman 1984; A Colossal Mess end a Colossal Mess of a Year. Grade: D+
Before we start this review, want to give a special shout out to movie goers. I’ve seen many sold out shows in the Las Vegas area on Christmas, as I’m honestly quite proud with all the support you’ve given to the theaters this holiday season. Hopefully this trend will continue moving forward onto 2021, as we all need to support our local movie theaters, film as an art form thrives off the theatrical experience and we need to continue to support this tradition. Big thank you to all the movie theater managers and employees, Christmas day is the busiest time of the year, as from experience... Very hectic and stressful. We appreciate all the hard work you guys do day in and day out, as you’ve all done a tremendous job bringing us a safe environment so we can continue watching films up on the big screen. Much love to you all and God Bless!
Wonder Woman 1984 tells a story about Diane aka Wonder Woman (Gal Gadot) getting acquainted with an unconfident co-worker named Barbara (Kristen Wiig). Diane and Barbara discover a magical stone, that can grant a wish in an exchange of something in return. As Diane and Barbara make their wishes, their wishes somehow came true. Diane got the love of her life Steve (Chris Pine) back... Sort of? While Barbara is now confident, pretty, and strong. As Barbara gets acquainted with a oil man figure named Maxwell Lord (Pedro Pascal), Maxwell is also interested in the stones power as he wishes he was the stone. Now Max Lord can freely grant anyone’s wishes, while gaining a great amount of power. Wonder Woman must stop Max Lord from creating chaos across the globe, while also stop Barbara from being a vicious cat... Ok then.
At first I was digging the Cinematography of this film, I like the whole retro 80’s type look especially in the opening where Wonder Woman is introduced in this world. Then after awhile... Visually the film looked extremely bland, while also capturing the vibe of Batman vs Superman, which I HATED the visuals of that film so it wasn’t pleasant to look at. Special effects were whatever, I especially hated how The Cheetah looked as it looked tremendously awful. I also think when Wonder Woman switched to this Golden Bird Suit, it looked rubbish as well. The Score was alright, felt nothing special to me nor was it bad by any means, which is rare coming from Hans Zimmer.
The cast in this film... Not very good I would say just about everyone. Gal Gadot in the first Wonder Woman was solid from what I remembered, she was the right fit as Wonder Woman as she captured some memorable kick ass moments. But Gal Gadot returning as Wonder Woman in this film... I honestly didn’t like her at all, as she played out my fears and doubts from what I had in the first film. I think what killed Gal Gadot returning as Wonder Woman is solely the fact she’s not doing much in terms of action/adventure, there are WAY too many sequences of her just in places or rooms talking, and since Gal Gadot is the not the best actress in the world... This performance suffers immensely, as you beg the film to let Gal be Wonder Woman and kick some ass. It also doesn’t help that scenes in which Gal Gadot has to express frustration, anger, and emotion... She failed immensely in line delivery, as it’s laughably awful. As Diane says goodbye to a character, her running and crying just felt like a hilarious meme off Vine, like her acting chops in this truly wreak! I’ve been told they’re going to grant Gal Gadot a third Wonder Woman film, so hopefully the lesson learned is to make Gal Gadot FIGHT rather than be in rooms talking.
Pedro Pascal playing the main antagonist Evil Tucker Carlson, was fine. I think Pedro shines in some moments, but in some moments where he has to deliver a evil laugh or showing frustration, it just wasn’t that good. I will say Pedro did a good job in sequences where he showed emotion towards the love of his little son, I thought he did a good job acting wise in those scenes. Evil Tucker Carlson as the antagonist felt like a less charming version of the villain in Shazam, plus it doesn’t help the character regarding the rules in becoming a magical wishing stone, which I’ll discuss in a bit. Kristen Wiig also playing the antagonist as Barbara aka Cheetah... Lame. Performance wise was cringeworthy, especially when Barbara becomes evil, Wiig’s performance becomes unbearable to watch as the line delivery felt extremely corny. As far as the character Barbara... I was getting some The Amazing Spider Man 2 vibes from the antagonist of the character Electro, as it’s extremely unenjoyable to sit through. Like I can’t stand these “Oh boo hoo I’m a nerd that lacks confidence, but now since I’ve been noticed, I’m gonna be BAD”... Like get this repetitive lame garbage out of my face man, shit STINKS! When Barbara becomes the Cheetah, it just reminds me of when Harry Osborn becomes the Green Goblin in The Amazing Spider Man 2, it’s utterly ridiculous and just awful to look at.
Chris Pine returning as Steve sort of, was alright as well. A highlight of Wonder Woman was most certainly the chemistry between Pine and Gadot, as the romance portion of that film was developed well and it was a delightful part to watch. But the chemistry between Pine and Gadot in this film felt extremely bland this time around, as most of the scenes they’re in not including the epic chase scene were dreadfully boring. This film tries to do a romantic comedy shtick between Steve and Diane, as it’s easily the worst part of the entire film. Like God Forbid this long montage of Steve trying to pick out the perfect outfit... What the hell is this?! I also did not like how Steve returns, as it felt an unnatural very awkward approach, as where you’re suppose to feel some kind of emotion as Diane and Steve reunite... You feel absolutely nothing in that scene, or in their emotional moment in the third act as well. Sure Chris Pine’s performance doesn’t offend me nor is it bad, however in this it just doesn’t have that spark nor magic it had in the first film.
Wonder Woman 1984 cut a deal with Warner Brothers and HBO, where they can have the film played in theaters and HBO Max at the same time, as we are treated to a Christmas release. Though I’m not a big super hero guy as I think these films are just whatever... DC on the other hand has made three recommendable films from their last five releases, as one that liked the first Wonder Woman, I was excited to experience this in a theater. Theatrical experiences from these super hero films are always scary, as the movie goers are known as The Worst Human Beings to sit through a movie with, as they are loud, rude, and obnoxious. I was reminded as a man up front kept waving his beaming light of an Apple Watch, back and forth on several occasions... Why can’t these man children ever be respectful in a movie theater setting?! Just embarrassing. You know what else is embarrassing?! Wonder Woman 1984... Sheesh this was one lousy film.
Though the story tried to express some meaningful messages, of not trying to cheat yourself to victory as you should be truthful to all accomplishments at hand, while greed destroys the planet. However those messages aren’t justified to how this story is told and developed... These messages are noticeable indeed, however it’s barely present as the rest of the story is just rubbish garbage. When it comes to Maxwell Lord becoming a magical stone, I can’t help to think the rules don’t necessarily work. One: Since Maxwell Lord wish to literally become the stone, shouldn’t he turn into the stone? Two: Shouldn’t all these wishes be naturally granted, instead of Lord tempting and harassing people to make wishes?! Like seriously he grabs peoples hands and goes “Yuh what do you want to wish for huh? Wish for something damn it!” Like a damn crack head... It honestly doesn’t make much sense. Yes as time goes by Lord is struggling with his health, as his wish does come with a price... But he can just heal himself by making people grant wishes and taking something in return, so should there be any concern really?! Like I said: The rules of this entire thing makes absolutely no sense at all.
Would anyone like to tell me why Barbara is inspired to become a Cheetah in the first place?! She looked and felt normal, what exactly inspired her to become a cat? Like Maxwell Lord and the wishing crap: None of it makes any sense. What also kills the story is the fact the pacing suffers immensely, as it’s an extremely LONG, SLOW, and DREADFULLY BORING film. I expected a fun action packed adventure story, as majority of the time I got characters just walking and talking the entire time. Especially this films attempt at Romantic Comedy... It’s extremely boring and most certainly not funny to the slightest degree. I will give that Diane feeling incomplete without Steve was fine, however most of it is either drawn out or nothing much is happening at all, only wasted screen time.
This film from a tone standpoint is extremely inconsistent. I can’t tell if they’re trying to be a fun campy super hero film, a romantic comedy, an emotional drama, or another DC dark superhero film... It’s just all over the place as it doesn’t work at all. Not enough action, as we’re left to maybe five action sequences that totaled maybe close to twenty minutes... For a two hour and thirty minute super hero film, that’s TERRIBLE. There’s a couple good action sequences in the beginning and the middle, then the rest were just meh and poorly shot in the third act. The finale was trash. Though a lesson was made, apparently mass destruction and death can be forgiven because one was sorry and learned their lesson, therefore no jail time or people being disappointed in him is allowed... HUH?!? A film like this was more deserving of streaming than being in a theatre, just a colossal mess.
Overall, Wonder Woman 1984 was crap. I don’t recommend this film, it’s a shame we get this kind of crap in theaters but can’t get Soul in theaters... BAH HUMBUG! Oh well it was nice to see a big movie in a theater again with a bunch of people, eager and excited to see, so happy we got some kind of normality at the end of the year. -Mitch Smietana