After being highly anticipated, Wonder Woman 1984 was released in theaters and HBO Max on December 25. The film takes place 66 years after the events of the first film, with a much different plot and setting than that of the first Wonder Woman.
Like the first film, the movie spends a large portion of the exposition creating a setting and detailing what Wonder Woman does in the present and where her wants and desires lie. Unlike its predecessor, 1984 speeds through the rising action of the film, barely introducing the protagonist to the antagonist. The antagonist of the film, Maxwell Lord, is played by the extremely talented Pedro Pascal. It’s clear that his talents are not properly utilized, as he is poorly developed throughout the movie and his sudden spurts of affection to his son throughout the movie confuses the audience. Kristin Wiig acts as an early companion to Wonder Woman, as the char-
acter of Priscilla Rich, or Cheetah. Her introduction into the movie feels natural but her character development through the middle of the movie and into the end of the movie feels rushed and unnatural, leading the audience to develop an unsure stance on the character. Steve Trevor is played again by Chris Pine to deliver yet another stellar performance in this
sequel. His character was written elegantly, delivering the messages of moving on and living in the moment. His journey is a tear jerking experience for the audience, but is fulfilling. Finally, Gal Gadot does a great job in her role as Wonder Woman once again. It is clear that Diana Prince has grown into her job as the silent protector of the people, but the script perfectly showcases that she longs for more of the past in her personal life. As an actress she does a great job of delivering a meaningful message to the audience even with a script filled with bad lines. If she gets nominated and wins an Oscar she did it without the help of the screenwriters.
Wonder Woman 1984 does a great job developing the main characters and illustrating their journey overcoming numerous physical and emotional challenges. The audience feels invested in Diana and Steve and cares deeply for them in each phase of the movie. However, the villain and side character are poorly developed and leave the audience uninterested, with barely anything that they can relate to. The plot poorly captures the struggles of the everyday man and does not leave a resonating message with the audience. Overall, the film does not live up to audience expectations and the standards of the first movie. With major pitfalls and poor character development, the movie is a substandard sequel to an amazing first movie. Still, I remain hopeful that another installment in the franchise has the possibility of living up to the first movie’s standards and would be worth watching.