Wonder Woman 1984 delivers a thrilling spectacle with Gal Gadot’s earnest performance at its core and filled with some sensational sequences that give the phrase “girl power” new life. The rest of the movie’s not bad either.
Gadot is back as the titular character Diana, who works as an anthropologist at the Smithsonian and she befriends an insecure, mild-mannered woman (Kristen Wiig) who is obsessed with Diana and would do anything to be like her idol.
The plot involves a Trump-like businessman named Max Lord (Pedro Pascal) who wants to acquire a mysterious device that will grant all his wishes, but it also takes away anything else from the person with whom he makes a deal. Pascal can be charismatic at times, but I think he lacks the menace David Thewlis brought to the first film.
Chris Pine returns as Steve Trevor, Diana’s love who was believed to be killed in the first one due to an explosion in his plane. Diana isn’t sure whether or not he’s real, but she takes a leap of faith and spends so much time reconnecting their lost love.
As the title suggests, the movie is set in 1984 and there’s a lot of excuses for shameless product placement such as Steve trying on parachute pants, breakdancing, and even the posters for Ghostbusters and Footloose make an appearance.
Wonder Woman 1984 largely succeeds on the shoulders of Gadot’s performance. The special effects sequences are convincing and they involve real-life interactions with Gadot instead of constantly relying on CGI.
The movie falters a bit with its villain and during the climax which goes on longer than it needs: There’s a fortune cookie sentiment about the dangers of wish fulfillment.
Besides the villain and its overblown climax, the movie is still a supercharged extravaganza that will please the rabid fans, and did I mention Gadot sells the movie through and through?
Note: There’s a mid-credit scene that delivers a massive sucker punch. It earns it.