Since her inception in 1941 in DC comic books with her patriotic red bustier embossed with a golden eagle and blue shorts with white stars, Wonder Woman has become a symbol of female empowerment in a comic book world dominated by male superheroes like Batman, Superman and Iron Man, and by male fans.
"Wonder Woman" is easily D.C.'s best live-action movie since 2009's "Watchmen". The comics giant has been getting crushed by its arch-rival Marvel for a decade in terms of the overall quality of its movies.
Even before the film's release, "Wonder Woman" stirred controversy when the small US cinema chain Alamo Drafthouse announced it would hold some women-only screenings of the film, sparking complaints on social media by of reverse sexism.
BDS Lebanon criticized the casting of the Israeli Gal Gadot as far back as April 2016, when the actress played the same role in "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice". Much like Chris Hemsworth in the first Thor and Dave Bautista in Guardians of the Galaxy, Gal Gadot is limited in the amount of dramatic acting she has to do and is instead given the chance to show her surprisingly decent comedic chops to hide her relatively unseasoned acting ability. "First and foremost she is Israeli".
In other words, it's basically the same good-vs. -evil matchup that's in every superhero movie, and nothing's particularly surprising about the plot as it unfolds - particularly the villains (Danny Huston and Elena Anaya), who sneer valiantly but never quite emerge as distinctive. Her thin frame doesn't keep her from being believable as a warrior and she is able to earn laughs, sympathy and admiration from the audience in equal measure.
In the film, Wonder Woman's red and gold bodice doubles as a suit of armor in fight scenes in which she darts and dodges bullets, knives and thunder bolts. Over-the-top German villains with bad accents; a ragtag group of mercenary heroes; an alien superhero eliciting laughs while trying to assimilate into normal society. Now, that next one is Wonder Woman. Wonder Woman is played as a complex character who voices her opinion every step of the way and acts on her instincts rather than advice or orders.
Patty Jenkins directs with grace and wonder.
In this era of endless aggression, fake news and alternative facts, a hero who values peace and carries a lasso that makes her adversaries tell the truth is one hell of a fantasy.
Wonder Woman opens everywhere June 2.