Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Michael B Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Angela Bassett, Martin Freeman, Forest Whitaker, Andy Serkis
Director: Ryan Coogler
Prince T’Challa (Boseman) is called home to Wakanda following his beloved father’s death. As he comes to terms with being king there, and whether his country should show it’s true nature as a highly advanced country or remain hidden from the eyes of the world, he finds that there are various threats to the throne, including a secret from his father’s past.
Part of the Marvel superhero cannon, this is a film that doesn’t suffer from any of the usual flaws that other comic book films do. Plot, character and personal relationships are all foregrounded here, and action sequences are genuinely exciting, but also make sense to the plot and the world that’s created.
One of the delightful things about this film is the world it’s set in. The music is a beautiful blend of traditional African sounds, blended with modern beats. The costumes are beautiful renderings of modern styles with more traditional prints or touches. Wakanda is a place of ancient beauty and traditions, with a hint of magic in the form of the goddess Bast who gave them the knowledge of vibranium, amongst other things. But it’s also a place of advanced technology and science, a country that’s hidden it’s advancement from the whole world for centuries, to protect itself.
It’s also a film where women are scientists and warriors, intelligent and tough as well as stunning. If the men in the film weren’t such strong characters, I think that the women might have stolen the film, because they’re such interesting and vibrant characters, impressive fighters as well as having a sense of humour and fun.
There is so much that’s wonderful about this film. It’s action and fight sequences are truly exciting and well paced throughout the film, but they also always arise from the plot, and don’t feel like they’re just there for spectacle. It’s full of wonderful little moments of humour or pathos, and everyone feels like a well realised person, whose motivations make sense, but it still also has a lot of fun with itself. As a stand alone film, it’s a great action and adventure story, but as part of the Marvel movies that are currently being churned out, it leaves a lot of the rest in the dust.
It’s impossible to mention this film without mentioning race, this being such a major film that has an all black cast, and I love that it was given such a big budget and that it has done so well. It’s a very exciting film in that sense too.
See It If: as a film that’s making history, perhaps we should all see it? It’s highly entertaining and exciting in it’s own right, with wonderful actors, a great director and wonderful design and action sequences. A great action film.