From her brief appearance in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice (one of that dreary film’s few bright spots), Wonder Woman, as portrayed by Gal Gadot (Fast & Furious), effortlessly captured the imagination of cinemagoers. Indeed, so striking was her turn as the ageless Amazon warrior that her current solo film easily ranked among this year’s most anticipated movies.
The story begins on the island of Themyscira, where the future Wonder Woman is a young princess named Diana. Her mother, Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen, Gladiator), is Queen of the Amazons, a race of warrior women created by Zeus to protect mankind from the evil of Ares, God of War. With centuries having passed since they dealt with the world of Man, Hippolyta has no desire for Diana to be trained in the martial arts. When Diana’s headstrong nature leads to seek secret training from General Antiope (Robin Wright, House of Cards and The Princess Bride), Hippolyta relents, on the stipulation that her child must be their greatest champion.
When an undercover spy named Steve Trevor (Chris Pine, Star Trek) crash lands his plane on Themyscira, Diana will be forced to leave her peaceful existence behind and encounter the realities (and prejudices) of a world at war. Her quest: to hunt down Ares, and end his machinations that are threatening to destroy the planet.
Now, with Wonder Woman breaking box office records across the globe and scores of glowing reviews, the people who haven’t seen it yet just want to know, “Does it live up to the hype?”
Gal Gadot Owns This
Forget the nonsensical controversy that came with her being announced in the role (“she’s too skinny!”) – Gal Gadot doesn’t so much play Wonder Woman as much as she IS Wonder Woman. In much the same way that Christopher Reeve effortlessly embodied everything good and pure about the Man of Steel in Superman the Movie (1978), Gadot nails her character’s combination of wide-eyed optimism and willingness to do battle for what she perceives to be right.
The clarity of purpose on display in Wonder Woman is refreshing and, dare I say it, inspiring. Coming on the heels of the DC Extended Universe’s decision to inexplicably make Superman – traditionally a symbol of hope – into a figure of self-doubt and angst in his films, Wonder Woman’s ability to stand by her convictions is absolutely the sort of character we need our kids looking up to. Also, the fact that she doesn’t destroy half a city or murder thousands to defeat one bad guy is a definite plus.