Wonder Woman Film Review: Is There Hope For The DCEU?

There have been numerous films based on DC Comics properties over the years, with Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy being the most successful and critically acclaimed of the bunch. After the conclusion of that series, DC decided to go with the cinematic movie universe approach that rival Marvel had been so successful with their own DC Extended Universe of movies.

After the mixed reception of Man of Steel to kick off the DCEU, many fans were even more disappointed in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad last year.

As a result, a lot of filmgoers and DC fans had nearly given up on the DCEU, but now Wonder Woman is here to save the day with her very refreshing solo outing.

Gal Gadot already made her first appearance as Wonder Woman in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, where she was easily a standout part of the movie.

There was a lot of backlash against her initial casting, similar to Ben Affleck's casting as Batman, but she proves critics wrong once again with her origin in Wonder Woman.

Wonder Woman follows the pretty basic origin of the character Diana, princess of the island of Themyscira, home of the Amazons, where she has been raised her entire life around solely women.

Then enters pilot Steve Trevor into the mix, played by the always charming Chris Pine, who is the first man that she has ever seen.

Diana then leaves the island with Trevor and gets involved with the ongoing World War I just as it is nearing an end. World War I is a setting we rarely get to see in film, with it really showing the brutality of this war between the trench warfare and such.

While slo-mo is overdone a lot today, Wonder Woman is one of the best uses of it in years, with the No Man's Land fight being one of the best action sequences in a comic book movie in awhile.

The movie may get a little CG heavy late, but it never loses its heart and is needed for the story they're telling.

There is obviously going to be a lot of comparisons to Captain America: The First Avenger with it being an origin story set during a World War.

There are definitely some similarities that I'll avoid due to spoilers, but it's very much its own movie that does not feel like a rehashing of that film in the least.

Perhaps the best part of the movie is the amazing chemistry between stars Gadot and Pine, who both have their own fish out of water story in Wonder Woman that are handled very well.

You actually are able to believe the growth that both characters go through during the movie and that is something that is often very hard to pull off in one film.

Romantic interests are often way too ancillary to the plot of the film itself and feel forced, but these two really help to push Wonder Woman to the upper echelon of comic book films.

What Wonder Woman also handles really well is showing how awesome Diana is both on and off the battlefield without making it feel like a movie built solely around girl power.

Similar to how Batman is able to stand next to Superman and Wonder Woman in battle, Steve Trevor plays a major role in the movie as well without taking anything away from Diana at all.

Wonder Woman manages to bring a lot of hope to the DCEU just as Gal Gadot brings to the role of Diana Prince that is reminiscent of Christopher Reeve's hopeful take on Superman back in the 1980s.

While I thought the movie had the potential to be good, I certainly did not expect it to jump into my top five comic book movies of all time list.

Director Patty Jenkins and the writers knew just what made Wonder Woman such a good character and needs to be seen, whether it's as a standalone movie or as part of the DCEU.

Verdict: 4.5/5 Stars

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