Fresh, bold, exciting and cool!
Due to the recent over saturation of the superhero genre, most of us have developed a fatigue to these movies by now and are tired of seeing the same old thing rehashed over and over again.
This was my biggest concern walking into this movie, so I kept my expectations low even throughout all the praise that Black Panther has been getting. I didn't wanna see the same story for the 19th time.
Well, may you rest at peace because Black Panther is NOT that, it's an exciting, fresh take on all the tropes that we are so bored of. I would even go as far to say that it may be the most memorable and highest quality film Marvel has produced since Civil War. Sure, Doctor Strange was visually cool, Guardians was okay, Spiderman was better than other Spidermans and Thor was fun, but Black Panther stands out from the crowd. For the most part, it solves my biggest problem that 99% of superhero films struggle with, which is pointless and weak villains. The movie starts off with (super minor spoilers?) it's secondary villain, who is a familiar and exciting character that I really enjoy seeing on screen - Ulysses Klaue. He's fun, energetic, crazy, unpredictable and cool. But later as the movie is developing, a new brand of Marvel villain emerges, Killmonger. He has everything that modern villains lack - moral dilemma, comprehensive motivation, solid plan. You understand him and you sympathise with his reasoning, understanding why he has to do what he's doing. It's not your typical pure overpowered evil forces from outer space here to conquer for no reason. It's a human who wants to fix the world and do something right, someone who believes that they are doing good.
Also, I enjoyed that the conflict of the movie was scaled (for the most part) and we didn't see any "world ending" implications or over the top CGI laser spewing magic boss battles (that look more like a video game cutscene than a movie, I'm looking at you Justice League). Both Black Panther and Killmonger were equally matched. Nobody was overpowered. The stakes were set at the exact right level, which gives me really high hopes for the upcoming Avengers movie. I don't know if this movie necessarily will withstand the test of time but what I know for sure that I really enjoyed it. In fact, it's a great movie that could be watched as a stand-alone film outside of the MCU, that doesn't require previous knowledge of comic book lore.
From a cinematic standpoint, I really enjoyed that this movie mashes so many of the familiar things that you know and love and puts them in one movie and NAILS it. It doesn't feel forced but you feel the genuine love and care that was there behind scenes. You can tell that this was a movie made by people who like movies. There are moments where it feels like it could be a scene from the universes like James Bond, Fast and the Furious, Lion King, Lord of the Rings, Game of Thrones, Xena, Tron and a million other things and it feels good. It was an awesome and epic ride that made me feel like a kid again.
Other than a few cheesy jokes that felt a little bit out of place à la "hey there fellow kids", there is really nothing to nitpick.
I have to applaud literally every single department that's worked on this movie - the cinematography, the special effects, the set design, costumes, music, sound design, acting, etc, all of it was top notch.
Overal, fantastic watch that's worth going to the theatre for.
Also, for those who are concerned that this is a liberal aimed progressive movie that's gonna shove "social justice warrior" things down your throat? You're just plain wrong. It doesn't feel forced at all, in fact, it felt more natural than a LOT of movies that are coming out these days.
Better than Wonder Woman, which I also enjoyed.
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