“Wonder Woman: 1984” (2020)- The Loss of Wonder.

The new Wonder Woman installation was eagerly anticipated by many fans, but was it worth the hype?

Property of Warner Bros.

The new Wonder Woman installation was eagerly anticipated by many fans, but was it worth the hype?

Garrett Masters, Opinions-Editorial Editor

When Patty Jenkins’ “Wonder Woman” came out in 2017, it offered a glimmer of hope to both critics and audiences. Now, with Jenkins returning to helm the sequel, does it do the same? Does the movie offer that same beacon of hope, amidst the panic and turmoil of 2020? 

“Wonder Woman: 1984” stars Gal Gadot. Chris Pine, Pedro Pascal, and Kristen Wiig, and follows the titular character as she contends against both allies and enemies as the fate of the world rests in the balance. 

Similar to the first film, Gadot once more brought such hope, charisma, and vulnerability to the character of Diana Prince and continued to both inspire and entertain. 

This is unfortunate because much like that first movie, she was a “fish-out-of-water” in a sense. Not in relation to the story, but to the caliber of the film itself. Her wonderful performance felt out of place in a movie rampant with script and plot issues. 

Which, sadly, segways into some of my main issues with this film. The biggest offender is the script, and the usage of lazy writing keeps the plot from achieving any of the dizzying heights that the first film soared to. 

This is exemplified by the core “plot device” of the movie; a magical item whose power is used to further the plot, instead of our investment. Because of this, the movie meanders in areas, causing the pace to move awkwardly at times.  

This is unfortunate because this directly affects characters like Maxwell Lord (played by Pascal) and Barbara Minerva (portrayed by Wiig,) who receive either too much or too little screen time. 

Pascal continued to bring his trademark relatability; (a trait he is most well known for on Disney’s “The Mandalorian”) while also not being afraid to ham it up as the oil tycoon, Maxwell Lord.

 Seeing the consequences of his actions play out, while also getting to know his character through Pascal’s manic performance, certainly made him a more “compelling” character, I guess you could say if you wanted to go that far. 

The same could not be said for Wiig’s Barbara Minerva, whose sudden turn to evil and cliched characterization felt unearned and ultimately unwarranted,

Minerva’s fall to the dark side felt unjustified. Instead of becoming invested in her through Wiig’s acting and comedy strengths, the film’s reliance on tired tropes and bad writing ultimately de-clawed what little interest she served in the first place. 

This isn’t to say that “WW1984” isn’t without some fun moments. The majority of the action scenes are thrilling and entertaining. Hans Zimmer’s score is (as always) sweeping and epic. And the interactions between Diana and Pine’s Steve Trevor were actually a lot more bittersweet than initially anticipated.

I would like to end on a quote from the movie which I feel perfectly encapsulates what “Wonder Woman 1984” strove to be, but only ended up becoming. According to Maxwell Lord, “Life is Good. But it can be better.”