It's the age old battle between DC and Marvel. While there's been many disputes, there's no denying that in the live-action #Film department, Marvel has been dominating for the past decade. Lately, DC has been trying whatever means necessary to beat out Marvel. But by doing so, they seem to be overcompensating and living by action movie tropes in hopes that it will please the masses. This has resulted in some inorganic and pretentious films. I always believed that for DC to succeed, they simply had to "be themselves". I know that's a cliche saying, but hear me out!

Instead of trying to live by Marvel's standards, or trying to purposefully beat Marvel, they should be focusing on films adaptions that they want to see and bring to life.

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After all these years, I think they are finally understanding that. "#Wonder Woman" is proof that DC is finally growing up and making films by their own rules. "Wonder Woman" is a beautifully shot adaption of the legendary heroine that features heart, action, and wonderful characterizations. It also proves that you can make a female superhero movie and have it be a hit! Personally, I believe it's one of the best DC has done so far. But is it perfect? Well, here's my brief review of the film. Warning:Spoilers Ahead.

What I Liked

For starters, the fact that an Israeli woman is playing the titular hero amazing! Although it may be a problem in some other countries, this is still a win for POC's in mainstream media. Diana is strong, independent, and surrounded by equally powerful warriors on the gorgeous island of Themyscira.

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The cinematography knows how to show off cool action scenes that make you feel the power of each blow. Speaking of cinematography, this film has actual color in it! Most DC films, in an effort to look "cool" and "edgy", seem to have very muted and grayish color palettes. Here they really indulge in the beauty of Diana's home island, and lets scenes filmed during the day actually look like daytime. Even in dreary London or the battle front, they still manage to incorporate some forms of color.

Her overall backstory was also handled very well. It wasn't overly complicated or felt like we had to rely on previous knowledge to keep up. Aside from the mandatory exposition about the Greek gods, her story felt lived through, instead of presented as a list of facts. A huge standout from the film was her relationship with Chris Pine's character, Steve Trevor. These two simply had amazing chemistry. I was quite charmed by their friendship and how natural their conversations felt. Especially their interaction on the boat when they're leaving the island.

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The titular hero herself also had great characterization and emotional growth. Her journey from a wide-eyed, loving girl to a wise and loyal woman was the films emotional core. Whether you were on board with her quest to kill the fabled Ares or not, you were with her every step of the way. I found myself verbally cheering her on (which I never do) and wanting to see her come out on top.

The fight scenes are also incredibly composed! When it finally came time for Diana to shrug off her disguise and run into no-man's land, I sat up in my seat! It was an incredibly satisfying moment that had me saying "YES GIRL" out loud. We had a pretty enthusiastic crowd, so I wasn't the only (or loudest) one. It was well paced and full of bad ass moments that I would pay to see again. And anytime she whipped out her lasso? Iconic. I only wish there were a few more scenes of her fighting as Wonder Woman (costume, lasso, and everything). I only say this because the fight scenes were that good, and I wanted them to continue! (She is one of my favorite characters in the "Injustice" game after all.) They also included the comedy in organic and entertaining ways. There were plenty of genuinely funny moments and that worked in well with the story's narrative. Well...for the most part.

Nitpicks

Despite there being lovely comedic moments, there were some that felt very trope-y. A very minor gripe I found was when a movie is female-centered, there tends to be more sex jokes and references. I'll admit the boat talk did have me laughing, but in the back of my mind I was aware of how often these awkward sex tropes appear in female-lead movies. A bigger gripe, however, was the "trying on dresses" trope. Like--seriously!?

In a general sense I'm not a huge fan of the fish out water trope. Not that good moments can't come from it, but at this point I feel like I've seen it a few too many times. Diana wanting to carry around her weapons in public was a very funny moment, but trying on dresses? Not only is that a female movie trope, but it's one that has never been good. In all my years I've never found them funny or serving a purpose in the story. You could've just easily given her a new outfit and been done with it. Maybe a comment or two about how she feels in it, but a montage of trying on clothes with wacky reactions? Sorry, but it's pretty lame. Even the guy sitting next to me asked out loud: "What the hell am I watching?" It didn't fit with the rest of the film and, let's be honest, wouldn't have been included if this were a male superhero movie. Fish out of water story is one thing; trying on dresses is something else.

On an unrelated note: why isn't Chris Pine British? He says he's a spy for the Brits, yet has no accent? If he mentioned he's originally from America or something, I'm sorry I didn't catch it. Only other thing I can think of is that the film makers knew combining a British accent and Chris Pine would be too sexy and half the audience (women and men) would implode. Admit it, you're thinking about it now. There's also the villains: Dr. Poison had great potential to be awesome, but she unfortunately had little screen time. Shame on you. But then there's the topic of the twist villain. SPOILERS: The twist villain ended up being Sir Patrick--the British guy.

Um, really? This was suppose to be the God of War; the great other worldly villain? Really?? Intimidated, I was not. Don't get me wrong, this is not a complaint against the actor himself! He was doing the best he could, but Ares was built up throughout the entire movie; and this average looking man in no way screamed "god" or "son of the almighty Zeus." It actually took me out of the climax because I was so aware that our protagonist, the Amazonian goddess Wonder Woman, was battling...well, a British guy. Even when he puts on the armor made of molten rock, I could see his face and mustache through the helmet. This was no case of reincarnation, this is straight up what he's always looked like. It's pretty underwhelming.

In Conclusion

A female superhero film is a topic even Marvel hasn't done yet, but it's something we've all so desperately needed. I know many fans were worried about their favorite heroines' first blockbuster adventure doing her justice. From my point of view, I was very impressed. I didn't go in with high expectations, just some 3D glasses and hope that at the very least, there would be some cool fight scenes. I found myself incredible engaged with the story and characters, which has lead me to proclaim that this is one of my new favorite superhero movies. Yes, I can't believe I said that either. I was starting to give up on DCEU and began to generalize them as the poor man's Marvel films. But I now know that if anyone can save the franchise, "Wonder Woman" can. #Gal Gadot