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Wonder Woman 1984 Movie Review: An Enjoyable But Disappointing Sequel

Wonder Woman 1984
(3)

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I think it’s safe to say that Wonder Woman 1984 wasn’t the movie anyone expected. While I enjoyed the overall film, I was very disappointed by many of the movie’s story choices (especially with Kristen Wiig’s Cheetah). 

From bad visual effects and to ridiculous story points, Wonder Woman 1984 could and should have been better.

But before we get into what went wrong, let’s talk about what I liked about the movie. (Spoilers ahead. If you haven’t seen WW84, then please skip to The Verdict)

The Good 

First off, let me start this review by saying I absolutely loved the mall scene. It was funny, adorable, and a great way to transition into the rest of the movie.

However, the opening scene of Wonder Woman 1984 is still hands-down the best part of the entire movie. There, we got to see a young Diana compete against her Amazonian sisters in a breathtaking Olympic-like event that cut across the entire island of Themyscria. 

Young Diana Competing At The Themyscria Games (Wonder Woman 1984 Movie Review)
Young Diana Competing At The Themyscria Games (Credit: WB Pictures)

It was nice to see how skilled and quick-witted Diana was at this age, as she easily outmatched several of her sisters who are decades older than her. However, the point of this fantastic scene was to teach Diana that they are no shortcuts to success. So when Diana takes a shortcut to get ahead, her Aunt Antiope (Robin Wright) stops her from winning the event.

This lesson resurfaces years later when Diana uses the wishing stone as a shortcut to bring back Steve Trevor (Chris Pine). But when Max Lord steals the stone’s power and uses it to throw the world into chaos, Diana realizes that the only way to save everyone is to renounce her wish. And so, just as she gave up her win when she was younger, Diana lets go of Steve.

While this scene was cheesy as hell, I love the idea of an infallible hero wanting something they can’t have. I just wished they presented it in a different manner.

Pedro Pascal as Maxwell Lord (Wonder Woman 1984 Movie Review)

When it comes to outstanding performances, Pedro Pascal’s Maxwell Lord steals the entire show.

His acting and charisma were a major reason I enjoyed certain aspects of Wonder Woman 1984. I loved how the film reworked Max’s Telepathic powers from the comics to fit its story. And I thought that him using his skills as a con artist to deceive people into making wishes for himself was a clever touch.

But while Maxwell Lord’s powers brought in some of the movie’s best aspects, it also ushered in some of the worst. 

Pedro Pascal as Maxwell Lord (Wonder Woman 1984 Movie Review)
Pedro Pascal as Maxwell Lord (Credit: WB Pictures)

When it comes to outstanding performances, Pedro Pascal’s Maxwell Lord steals the entire show. His acting and charisma were a major reason I enjoyed certain aspects of Wonder Woman 1984. I loved how the film reworked Max’s Telepathic powers from the comics to fit its story. And I thought that him using his skills as a con artist to deceive people into making wishes for himself was a clever touch.

But while Maxwell Lord’s powers brought in some of the movie’s best aspects, it also ushered in some of the worst. 

The Bad

If there was one thing that didn’t help Wonder Woman 1984, it was its cartoonish tone and poor visual effects. Not only was this distracting, but by the end of the second act, it threw the entire movie into chaos. 

As much as I loved how Max Lord’s powers worked, the scale of the most wishes in the movie were ridiculous. Random things just kept happening in the background, and it drew attention away from the movie’s main story, which was meant to be an emotional reminder that we’re not alone in our pain, loss, or grief.

The movie’s unnecessary use of slow-motion didn’t help matters either. And in most cases, it only ruined several moments that were already perfectly fine.

However, the biggest sin Wonder Woman 1984 commits is botching Barbara Minerva’s story. 

Kristen Wiig's Barbara Minerva (Wonder Woman 1984 Movie Review)

While the nerd becomes a cool-girl origin story wasn’t bad, I was disappointed they didn’t develop her character past low self-esteem and greed. 

In the comics, Barbara’s friendship with Diana is far more pronounced. And the reason she grows to hate Wonder Woman because Diana wasn’t there when she needed her most.

Kristen Wiig's Barbara Minerva (Wonder Woman 1984 Movie Review)
Kristen Wiig’s Barbara Minerva (Credit: WB Pictures)

While the nerd becomes a cool-girl origin story wasn’t bad, I was disappointed they didn’t develop her character past low self-esteem and greed. 

In the comics, Barbara’s friendship with Diana is far more pronounced. And the reason she grows to hate Wonder Woman because Diana wasn’t there when she needed her most.

This is what I expected from Wonder Woman 1984. A movie that sees Diana desperately trying to save a close friend whom she accidentally neglected. But what we got instead was a generic subplot, which culminated in a generic superhero vs. supervillain fight. Except this one had terrible CGI. 

Verdict 

Summary

While the movie is far from perfect, I actually enjoyed watching Wonder Woman 1984. However, I only got to this point after letting go of my expectations and embracing the movie for what it was. 

Overall
3
Comments Rating 2 (1 review)

Pros

  • Excellent Acting
  • Strong Opening Scene
  • Adorable Mall Scene

Cons

  • Excessive Cartoonish Tone
  • Poor Visual Effects
  • Messy Storytelling

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User Reviews (3)

  1. (2)

    Really talk. Very messy storytelling. There were jst too many things wrong with this movie. Especially that whole “I can make things invisible” part.

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