Gal Gadot returns as the Amazonian heroine Diana Prince/Wonder Woman in this sequel to the 2017 smash hit. After a spectacular opening sequence set in her native Themyscira we catch up with her decades after the first movie working a senior anthropologist at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington, DC.
She is living an unassuming life, while donning her armour to fight crime on the side. That is, until a mysterious stone is sent to the Institute for analysis.
It turns out that it has the power to grant your desires, and after wishing that the love of her life, the long deceased WWI pilot, Steve Trevor, was still with her, Diana suddenly finds him back in her life.
However, a mysteriously returned lover, who is astounded by the 80s and trying to figure out this amazing new world, is the least of her worries, as a colleague, Barbara Ann (Wiig) wishes that she could be just like Diana.
Of course, this means that the mild-mannered archaeologist not only gets her friend’s moxy, but also her powers, much to her surprise and delight. Unfortunately, it will ultimately cause her to transform into a more animal than human creature, known as Cheetah. As if that wasn’t enough, a crazed megalomaniac, Maxwell Lord (Pascal) decides to use the stone to attain the power and world domination he desires, and so the scene is set for lots of epic action-scenes, and a cautionary tale about the ramifications of getting everything you wish for.
Gadot is once again wonderful as the titular heroine, and has really made the role her own. (Special shout out should also go to her mini me, Lilly Aspell, who plays the younger Diana in the opening sequence and is fabulous).
Her chemistry with Pine is still wonderful, and he is completely comfortable in his role as the sidekick (I’m sure many Hollywood leading men wouldn’t be). The scenes where he tries to comprehend the wonders of the new world he finds himself in are hilarious, and really show his comedic chops.
Wiig’s evolution into Cheetah is subtle, and builds nicely. She plays the metamorphosis of the character wonderfully. Meanwhile, Pascal takes the role of Lord, and runs with it, channelling every OTT big screen villain you’ve ever seen.
Jenkins’ direction is once again thoughtful, and focuses as much on the characters’ development as the big action scenes. And boy, are the action scenes big. Epic is an understatement, as we are treated to several huge and spectacular set-pieces. One glance at the number of stunt performers in the credits will give you an indication of the work that went into these scenes, but they are truly worth it. They are also beautifully shot, with amazing sound mixing.
Once you recover from the joy of actually seeing a blockbuster on the big screen again, after months of streaming (and this movie really needs and deserves to be seen on the big screen) this proves a wonderfully joyous escapism from all that’s happening in the world right now.
It is thrilling and vibrant, and manages to elevate above being a mere superhero movie. One or two elements don’t always work, but overall, it is a wonderful addition to pop culture that takes you on a roller-coaster ride, and will bring a lump to your throat, just as often as it has your heart in your mouth.
I imagine this could give cinemas a very welcome boost after a difficult year.
In Cinemas Now! Trailer below: