January 19, 2021

DCTRS

Damascus Center for Theoretical and Civil Rights Studies

‘Wonder Woman 1984’ reviews: See what critics are saying

Everyone’s favorite humanity-saving, golden lasso-wielding, Amazonian warrior goddess is back — as are Chris Pine and the ’80s — in Warner Bros.’ “Wonder Woman 1984.”

Ranging from lukewarm to glowing, reviews are in for the highly anticipated sequel starring Gal Gadot and directed by Patty Jenkins, who also helmed 2017’s groundbreaking superheroine blockbuster.

After multiple delays prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the DC action flick is finally set to debut in select theaters and on HBO Max Dec. 25.

“This extravagant, genially overstuffed sequel may be a product of 2020, but its spirit feels gratifyingly in sync with 1984 — a year that, for all its Orwellian associations, predates the chaos and cynicism of our pandemic-stricken, politically deranged moment,” writes the Los Angeles Times’ Justin Chang.

“The pandemic’s toll on moviegoing, and the temporary suspension of our collective blockbuster fatigue, may account in part for why this picture makes such welcome company.”

Originally slated for a summer release, “Wonder Woman 1984″ also stars “Saturday Night Live” alum Kristen Wiig and “The Mandalorian” himself, Pedro Pascal, as dueling villains. Here’s a sampling of what critics are saying.

Rolling Stone

“Why rein Wonder Woman in at all? ‘Wonder Woman 1984′ is, in so many ways, a more ambitious, expansive movie than its predecessor, tackling more in the way of dramatic chaos, big feelings, and convoluted archaeological villainy,” writes K. Austin Collins.

“But Diana Prince herself, as resumed by Gal Gadot, feels a little less complicated, her personality even more razor-focused, more straightforwardly virtuous, than before. It makes all the excitement that arises in the movie’s button-busting two-and-half-hour runtime feel somehow narrow, too, even as the premise expands.”

Variety

“Movies don’t solve global health crises, but they can distract and inspire us. They can bring us together when we’re apart and heal the divisions that define our times,” writes Peter Debruge.

“I suppose ‘Wonder Woman 1984′ can achieve some of those things, but mostly it reminds us how badly we could use a superhero right now — a fantasy turn-back-time and fix-the-situation savior — and in that sense, it’s at once a fizzy pop-art distraction and a major downer.”

The Hollywood Reporter

“As talented as both Pascal and Wiig are, neither actor is given the scope to have much fun with their characters, and the climax in which good inevitably triumphs over evil and the myth of being able to have it all makes way for the value of truth seems, well, anticlimactic,” writes David Rooney.

Gal Gadot as Diana Prince and Chris Pine as Steve Trevor in “Wonder Woman 1984.”

(Clay Enos / Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Comics)

Vanity Fair

“In its best stretches — the first hour of the film, let’s say — ‘WW84′ sweetly revels in its old-school trappings, its hokey mystery, its goofy villain, its resourceful hero. The film is light on its feet, colorful and playful in a way not seen elsewhere in the DC Universe,” writes Richard Lawson.

“It’s downright fun, with a rollicking opening set piece in a bright-hued shopping mall that sets the stage for cute antics to come — the film not only looks ’80s but feels it, in all its decidedly uncool earnestness.”

USA Today

“While not quite up to par with its predecessor, the Reagan-era sequel returns Gal Gadot as the Amazon princess with the bulletproof bracelets, introduces a couple worthy foes, and is a pretty fun time even if the extremely busy ‘1984′ almost wears out its welcome at a hefty two and a half hours,” writes Brian Truitt.

Entertainment Weekly

“[T]he period proves a strangely apt lens through which to view Diana, whose unflappable earnestness can never fully avoid registering as slightly cheesy, but it goes down easier coming from an ’80s flick (or a fake one, anyway),” writes Mary Sollosi.

“The film does well, too, playing with the conflict between contemporary values and the philosophies of our virtuous heroine, who represents truth in a superficial world and knows she must choose selflessness even when the culture preaches greed. It’s an inspired setting — it does all the work.”

Gal Gadot and Kristen Wiig in "Wonder Woman 1984"

Gal Gadot as Diana Prince, left, and Kristen Wiig as Barbara Minerva in “Wonder Woman 1984.”

(Clay Enos / Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Comics)

The Guardian

“As so often, I wish that Wiig could have been given more properly funny lines but undermining the star’s seriousness is apparently not on — even though jokes are allowed in Marvel Cinematic Universe movies,” writes Peter Bradshaw.

“This is an epically long and epically brash film from director and co-writer Patty Jenkins, but Gadot has a queenly self-possession and she imposes her authority on it.”

BBC

“Jenkins has said that she would have liked the film to be 15 minutes longer,” writes Nicholas Barber. “Some viewers might have liked it to be 15 minutes shorter. But, for most of the running time, they will be happy to be in Wonder Woman’s uplifting company. In its old-fashioned, uncynical way, ‘WW84′ is one of the most enjoyable blockbusters to be released since 1984.”