Wonder Woman was one of the hotly anticipated releases of this year, it follows the DC Comic’s superhero before she gained her name, when she was just Diana, Princess of the Amazons. We see Diana growing up and her desperation to be a tribal warrior like the other women surrounding her, so when a pilot crashes into their world telling of a great war (WW1), Diana takes it upon herself to leave home and help fight. Along the way she starts to realise she has more power than she first thought, and just what this power could do to help end the war. Directed by Patty Jenkins – who has subsequently become the first female director of a studio superhero movie, and since the film’s release its given Jenkins the biggest domestic opening of all-time for a female director – and the lead played by Gal Gabot, Wonder Woman is definitely a female driven film.
Gal Gabot is utterly perfect in this role, she is undoubtedly beautiful but her kick-ass attitude means that women wish they could be her rather than hate her. I won’t deny that there were quite a few times I found myself wishing I could look as good as her in the outfit, but overall my feelings towards Gal/Wonder Woman is that I wish I had her guts! Gal’s portrayal gives us a woman who isn’t afraid to stand up for herself, whether physically or through words, she is a brilliant role-model. The character is passionate and brave and Gal really creates a role that is believable and likeable. Relatively unheard of as an actress, Gal has certainly held her own in this lead role, proving all the critics wrong (many didn’t believe she was capable of doing the iconic character justice). The fact that she was five months pregnant whilst doing the re-shoots just makes Gal more of a hero in my eyes! She’s definitely one I’m going to watch out for in future films, and she’s officially one of my girl crushes!
The leading male is played by Chris Pine (Star Trek) as the pilot who crashes into Diana’s world. His character, Steve, brings a light humour throughout as he tries to make sense of Diana and this strange world that she has come from. There is a clear showing of respect from him towards Diana though, probably due to her dominant nature – and the fact she could beat him in a fight any day! Chris and Gal work perfectly together, creating a believable friendship/romance. Steve and Diana’s journey takes them across countries as they track down the person Diana believes is Ares (the God of War). Diana’s belief is that if Ares is stopped then the war will immediately end, for the war is Ares doing and not man-kinds. Steve, although sceptical, agrees to help and enlist his friends to join them. They include Steve’s secretary Etta (Lucy Davis, The Office), spy Sameer (Saïd Taghmaoui), marksman Charlie (Ewen Bremner, Trainspotting) and smuggler Chief (Eugene Brave Rock, The Revenant). Together they create quite the team, and though there are now a lot of men involved it’s still Diana that is leading the film. Another familiar face is David Thewlis (Harry Potter) who plays Steve’s boss.
Visually, Wonder Woman is fantastic! There are a lot of superb action scenes – proving women are just as good at producing action sequences – and some of these are equipped with slow-motion shots, really ramping up the drama and tension. There’s plenty of dramatic moments to keep the guys happy and the fact that it’s Gal who executes the majority of the moves gives women a feeling of pride and respect.
Overall, I honestly think Wonder Woman is a fantastic film! Gal Gabot completely owns this role and I came out the cinema feeling awed and a little bit in love. Some of the Marvel/DC adaptions can be too laddie so to have one which is not only female led but female directed means that the outcome is a film that women will thoroughly enjoy and aspire towards. This doesn’t mean that men won’t enjoy it, quite the opposite in fact, but it wouldn’t surprise me if Wonder Woman becomes a favourite amongst women when deciding between superhero films. I would wholeheartedly implore you to go and see this film, if only to give you the sense that women really are capable of anything.