Mandatory Movie Battles: ‘Wonder Woman’ vs. ‘Wonder Woman 1984’

Three years ago, director Patty Jenkins brought Themyscira, home of the Amazons, to the big screen. The empowering sight of warrior women handing German soldiers an ass-whooping with medieval weaponry blew audiences away. At the center of it all was Diana Prince aka Wonder Woman, brought to life by Gal Gadot —it was as if she was born for the role.

On Christmas day, Jenkins’ oft-delayed follow-up, Wonder Woman 1984, made its way to HBO Max (and theaters): Diana and beau, Steve Trevor (Chris Pine), are back. This time, instead of taking on World War I, the pair tackle 1980s-era greed, a “Dreamstone,” and the idea that “nothing good is born from lies.” As one of the few blockbusters of 2020, this sequel not only needs to live up to its predecessor but surpass it. So, does Wonder Woman 1984 capture the same sense of wonderment as 2017’s Wonder Woman? Let’s find out. (WARNING: Spoilers for Wonder Woman 1984.)

Cover Photo: Warner Bros. 

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Wonder Woman 1984 tries to capture the wonderment of the first film. Too hard. It rehashes the “fish out of water” dynamic (for next to no reason) and makes Diana lovesick instead of independent and strong (like Wonder Woman is supposed to be). On top of that, its plot is nonsensical to the point of comical; magical stones and out-of-the-blue abilities are more important than character development and tone, which is the equivalent of Steve Trevor’s inability to pick an outfit. Frankly, the litany of problems with Wonder Woman 1984 is exhausting to the point of indifference. So, wonderment? No. Wonder Woman 1984 raises way too many questions and fails to reach the heights of the first film even when it goes about doing so literally. 

Overall Winner: Wonder Woman

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