Saturday, February 17, 2018

Black Panther

I thought Wonder Woman was a very good movie.

I spent the first half hour of Black Panther thinking that DC can thank their lucky stars WW came out first.

Black Panther took many similar beats -- hidden, ancient, technologically advanced society with non-traditional heroes -- and showed just how to make a great movie. Wonderwoman's setting back in World War I can't hold a candle to the setting of Oakland. More relatable, and more sensical.

Marvel had done a tremendous job over 18 films building a rich universe. I loved Guardians of the Galaxy and Ant Man for just being fun movies. Doctor Strange introduced wonderous concepts.

Civil War brought up concepts of just who the super heroes work for; Spiderman Homecoming had a villain who had a believable and sympathetic story line who you could see advising Spiderman in the future. Killmonger is the best villain yet -- a character created by past actions of super heroes, completely and well formed and with credible goals even if you didn't agree with either his goals or methods.

Where Black Panther really shined was not building upon past movies, which is something Marvel has already excelled at, but at making clear the differences between characters.

Iron Man is the orphaned playboy Tony Stark, yeah saving the world when he's not self-absorbed in his own greatness.

Captain America fights for the American Way -- his innate sense of fairness, and his friends. Mostly his friends. Cue Band of Brothers references.

Black Panther though not only has the burdens of being King on his shoulders, but takes on the leadership of his entire race. He's the one on whose thrown Truman's old "The Buck Stops Here" sign hangs.

Thor? Compared to Black Panther he is Thor the Unready -- and he not only manages to see his home world blown up, but never understands the dignity of the Crown like T'Challa does.

Did I mention how impressed I am with Black Panther as a movie, and how it seems to have become the keystone to the entire cinematic universe. That is something I never saw coming.

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