Beach Party a Go-Go, Part 3

(Submitted by Smutmaster Eric…Thanks, Kinky Ho-mie! :))


Featuring: Jeana Tomasina, Val Kline, Debra Blee, James Daughton, Gal Godot, Deborah Richter, Jill Schoelen, D P & Julie Brown

The Beach Girls (1982)

Wonder Woman (2017)

Hot Moves (1984)

#FreedomFriday (2016)

Earth Girls Are Easy (1988)

DC & WB Rock Hall H with A Justice League Trailer & An Updated Film Slate!

(Submitted with much DC love by Mr. Prince Adam… 😉 Thanks, and Happy Birthday Week, Super Friend! 🙂 xoxo)


San Diego Comic Con has come and gone, and once again, the news and footage coming out of Warner Brothers DC Entertainment panel has left me amazed and excited. Let’s start with news updates.  We know that after Justice League, Aquaman is next in theaters in December of 2018. Beyond that, we had no idea what was coming after that….until now! SHAZAM will go into production in February 2018, for a 2019 release! While we don’t have actors announced for Billy Batson or his SHAZAM alter-ego, we know The Rock has been cast as Black Adam, SHAZAM’s nemesis.  However, Geoff Johns has stated that he will not appear in SHAZAM, instead focusing on a Black Adam solo movie, and then culminating with a faceoff between the two. The director of the film will be David F, Sandberg.  The director should be familiar to readers of this site, as he has directed the horror film Lights Out and has the film Annabelle: Creation releasing in August.  If I had my way the story for SHAZAM should be an amalgamation of the origin written by Geoff Johns and drawn by Gary Frank, and an older story titled Trials of SHAZAM.  Both, I will eventually review here.  No matter what story is told, if done correctly, SHAZAM, could be a mix of Superman, meets Harry Potter, with a sprinkle of BIG thrown in there! It has all the potential to be a four quadrant crowd pleaser and a big hit with kids.

The other DC Films on WB’s schedule are Batgirl, Suicide Squad 2, Justice League: Dark, Green Lantern Corps, The Batman, The Flash: Flashpoint,  and Wonder Woman 2.  Here’s what we know about some of the other films:

Batgirl is being written and directed by the masterful Joss Whedon.  Geoff Johns said that Joss Whedon will start work on Batgirl in 2018 because as of right now, he is finishing up scheduled reshoots on Justice League, after he stepped in for Zack Snyder, when Zack had to step away from the film due to a personal family tragedy.  Justice League Dark is currently searching for a director, after filmmaker Doug Liman left the project due to a scheduling conflict. Green Lantern Corps is being co-written by David Goyer and Justin Rhodes, with a story treatment by Geoff Johns.  The film will feature many Green Lanterns but the focus will be on Hal Jordan and John Stewart.  The film has been described as Lethal Weapon in space.  The Batman is just gearing up with Matt Reeves directing, after just releasing the master class that is War for the Planet of the Apes.  Matt Reeves indicating they are in the initial stages of scripting and while he’s focused on this film, he does have ideas for a multi-film Batman story.  Most in Hollywood believe it is a trilogy.  The director has said he envisions The Batman as a noir detective story, which is music to my ears. The Flash film recently had a new draft of the script turned in and is now an adaptation of the 2011 even miniseries Flashpoint.  In terms of directors, last we heard was that Robert Zemeckis of Back to the Future fame, was the frontrunner to direct. I hope the deal is finalized, because Robert Zemeckis and The Flash seems like a match made in heaven.  In regards to a Wonder Woman sequel, that’s a no-brainer after the massive success of the Wonder Woman film, which is still in theaters.  Negotiations for Patty Jenkins to return to direct are underway and Geoff Johns just started writing the script. There are rumors indicating that the film will be another period piece, set to the backdrop of the Cold War. Though, there’s no official confirmation of that.

About 12 hours before the DC Films presentation, a report indicated that Warner Brothers was plotting a course for the Batman solo film franchise without Ben Affleck as its star.  The report has asserted that Affleck’s age and Matt Reeve’s desire to do a trilogy as reasons for Affleck’s supposed exit. The posited that Ben Affleck’s last performance as Batman, could possibly be Justice League in November.  The report indicated that a story reason in one of the upcoming DC Films would account for a recast Batman.  At today’s panel, Ben Affleck was asked directly about this story.  This was his response; “”Let me be clear: I am the luckiest guy in the world… I would be an ape on the ground for Matt Reeves let alone Batman.” Here’s my take on the situation.  I think there’s truth in both Ben Affleck’s statement and The Hollywood Reporter.  Here’s how I see it going down.  My gut feeling is that Ben Affleck will star in The Batman.  He will then make a cameo at the beginning of Flashpoint.  Then Flash will go back in time, and prevent the death of his mother.  When he does, that causes several changes to the timeline, including a war between Themyscira and Atlantis.  Also, Bruce Wayne was killed as a child, instead of his parents on that fateful night.  This drives Martha insane, and prompts Thomas Wayne to become Batman.  Barry Allen works with Thomas Wayne’s Batman to get his speed back, so he can reset the timeline.  The only reason Thomas Wayne agrees to help him, is because The Flash tells Thomas Wayne that in his timeline he and Martha died, but Bruce survived and was the Batman of his world.  When Flash regains his speed, he returns to the Batcave, and talks with a younger looking Batman. The reason why Batman is younger, is because all the heroes lost some time of their lives.  You’d have to rework a bit of the story, but you could have the ending where after fixing the timeline you could have Flash meet Batman in the Batcave to make sure that everything went back to normal. At this moment, you could have Ben Affleck’s potential replacement in that scene.

That’s all what’s to come in the near future, but let’s talk about something more immediate.  The newest Justice League Comic Con Sneak peek, was 4 minutes of Nerdgasmic justice. The trailer starts with DC’s newest movie Superstar, Wonder Woman stops a bank robbery, busting open doors and doing her signature leg sweep.  We then see a quick shot of Bruce Wayne talking about an upcoming threat.  Cut to Themyscira.  We see Hippolyta and the Amazon’s looking on as a Mother Box opening up a boom tube, followed by Steppenwolf crashing throw it.  We see little bits of Steppenwolf throughout the trailer but never a full on shot.  There’s a Steppenwolf voiceover with him saying that Earth has no protectors, no Lanterns and no Kryptonian.  It will fall, like all the others.  He scorches the earth with what looks like a big steel whip.  But yes, we have a Green Lantern reference.  They exist in the DCEU.  We get more solo shots and action shots of the team. Aquaman underwater, dodging Apocalyptian spears.  We see The Flash running, and we see Cyborg plugging into the Knight crawler and assuming control from Alfred.  Speaking of Alfred, there’s a lot of humor from Alfred. There’s even a reference to Batman Returns.  Let’s see if you spot it.  Batman and the world are still morning the loss of Superman. We see Batman return to the scene of Superman’s death, perched on a gargoyle. We also see a scene of Batman on a rooftop, looking at the Bat-Signal.  I don’t care what anyone says, but nobody does iconic Batman shots like Zack Snyder.  Speaking of iconic Batman shots, we get Batman and J.K. Simmons pitch perfect Commissioner Gordon on a rooftop with the Batmobile.  This classic moment is given a different dynamic, as the entire Justice League has joined them.  This leads to one of the funniest moments of the trailer courtesy of The Flash.  He actually has two. Two action scenes that really stood out were Aquaman quasi surfing on a Parademon down a building, and The Flash catching and tossing Wonder Woman’s wayward sword back to her.  Wonder Woman stole the show in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, and I believe Ezra Miller will be the standout as The Flash in Justice League.  Also, good job by the marketing department for having Superman heavily mentioned and referenced but never flat our shown! Save his resurrection for the film!

I loved this trailer.  I think it as the visual power and flare that you come to expect from a Zack Snyder film, with the epic, fun tone you get from reading a Justice League comic book or an episode of the animated series.  I think even detractors of Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice will enjoy this trailer. Wonder Woman was a high note for the DCEU and I think Justice League will further build on that.  Aquaman will make that wave stronger and the updated announced slate will keep the good times rolling. I can’t wait to see Justice League on November 17th and review it for you all, shortly thereafter. As the trailer tagline says, I’m All In with the DCEU!

#WetWednesday: “The Don’t Go Chasing Waterfalls” (and/or Lakes) Edition, Part 3

(Submitted with love and lust by Smutmaster Eric…Thanks, Kinky Ho-mie, and Happy Humpday to all my Kinky Kreeps! 🙂 xoxo)

Featuring: WW, Elisabeth Shue, Tom Cruise, Jennifer Lynn Warren, Adrienne King, KK & Jessica Lange

Wonder Woman (2009)


Cocktail (1988)


Creature (2011)



Friday the 13th (1980)

King Kong (1976)

BoXXX Office Awesomeness: Wonder Woman Decapitates Deadpool

(Submitted by Mr. Prince Adam…Thanks, Kinky Ho-mie! 🙂 xoxo)

In the last couple of weeks, Wonder Woman has been getting more and more competition for box office dollars. Cars 3, Transformers: The Last Knight, and Despicable Me 3 have all entered the marketplace, yet Wonder Woman has remained a steady earner. Its biggest competition has arrived in the form of Spider-Man: Homecoming. The film is great and there was no doubt it would be #1 this weekend. To give you an idea of how good it’s doing, the second Spider-Man reboot in 15 years webbed up $117 Million, which is second among Spider- Man films. Worldwide, the film has garnered a total of over $250 Million after just 3 day. Again, the film deserves every bit of money it’s making and you can read my review to see why. However, despite the arrival of the web slinger and losing 313 theatre screens, Wonder Woman is still kicking box office ass! In her 6th weekend of release, Wonder Woman made another $10,135,000 in North America. That brings its domestic total to $368,786,191 after 38 days of release! Wonder Woman has decapitated Deadpool’s entire domestic box office run and sits 2nd on the list of superhero origin films, behind only Sam Raimi’s original Spider- Man film. That amount also means that domestically, Wonder Woman is the second highest grossing superhero film of all time that doesn’t feature Batman, Superman or Spider-Man. Exact foreign figures for the weekend aren’t available, however, internationally the film made another $17,000,000 in the last week, to bring the foreign totals to $377,000,000. Worldwide, the film has secured a grand total of $745,786,191. While Wonder Woman passed Suicide Squad domestically about a week and a half ago, it has now passed it worldwide as well. Wonder Woman now sits 4th on the list of all time box office earners in Warner Brothers history behind only Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2, The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises.  Wonder Woman looks like she will hit at least one more domestic milestone and one more worldwide accolade, which I will report on as it happens, there is no stopping DC Comics’ Amazonian Princess and Queen of the Superheroes!

Ho-stess’s Note: Even Deadpool had to give the Goddess props. 🙂 xo

Wonder Woman Flies By Batman V Superman To Become #1 DCEU Film In North America!

(Submitted by Prince Adam, who is adorably ecstatic about this news!! 😉 xoxo)

Remember last week, when I cautioned not to underestimate Wonder Woman? Well, I should have taken my own advice. Over the weekend, the film brought in another $16,100,000 at the North American Box Office, to raise its domestic earnings to $346,644,475. That figure means that Patty Jenkins directed Wonder Woman film, has surpassed both Suicide Squad and Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, to become the top grossing DC Extended Universe film in North America. Look, as much as I love Wonder Woman, even I didn’t think that was possible, when you consider that it started $30 Million behind Suicide Squad and $63 Million behind Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, after opening weekend. Not only that, the Gal Gadot led film has also surpassed the domestic totals of Guardians of the Galaxy and Spider-Man 3. In terms of superhero origin films, it ranks 3rd behind only Spider-Man and Deadpool. While weekend specific international figures haven’t been made available, I can tell you that Wonder Woman’s foreign figure has risen to $361,800,000. That brings the films worldwide total to a spectacular sum of $708,444,475. Keep in mind that Wonder Woman has only been out for a month and still needs to open in Japan. There are still records to be broken and I’ll update you on the films progress again next week, but you can’t help but marvel at what a wonderful success this is for DC Films and the comic book superhero film genre as a whole.

Box Office Update: Wonder Woman Makes History & Muscles Her Way Past Man of Steel

(Submitted by Prince Adam…Thanks, Super Friend! 🙂 xoxo)

Before we get to specific numbers, I’d like to congratulate director Patty Jenkins and Wonder Woman on having and being the largest grossing live action film directed by a woman! I think it’s only fitting that Wonder Woman is the film to have this distinction. Now, onto the specifics. In its 4th weekend, facing competition from Cars 3 & Transformers: The Last Knight, Wonder Woman still managed to take in $25,175,000. That represents a minimal 39% decline from last weekends $41.2 Million intake. All of this means, that Wonder Woman now has a 24 day domestic haul of $318,380,158. Remember when early box office predictions had Wonder Woman’s entire domestic run finishing at $225 Million!? The moral of that story? NEVER underestimate the Princess of Themyscira! In North America, Wonder Woman has now surpassed the entire runs of Logan, X-Men: The Last Stand, X-Men: Days of Future Past, The Incredibles, Doctor Strange, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, The Amazing Spider Man 1 & 2, Batman (1989) and Iron – Man 2. In terms of her DCEU counterparts, the 4th entry into the shared universe has surpassed Man of Steel, the film that started it all back in 2013. What’s just as impressive is that Wonder Woman is performing equally as well overseas. Internationally Wonder Woman added another $20.5 Million. . The new running total for the film starring this amazing Amazon, is $334,500,000. When added together, Wonder Woman has crossed the milestone of $600 Million. Specifically, she has soared passed that total with a wonderful World Wide cume of $652,880,158. Next weekend Wonder Woman is poised to do what many, even myself deemed impossible and I’ll be back next week to tell you what that is! Until then, continue experiencing the wonder.

#SuperheroSaturday Comic Book Review: Injustice Gods Among Us #7-9

(Submitted by out freaky friend, Mr. Dr. Prince Adam III…Thanks, Heroic Ho-mie! 🙂 xoxo)

This trilogy of issues starts with a U.S. Missile strike in Bialya, on a stronghold of a Rebel Leader.  Before the missile could hit its target Superman intercepts it, destroying the missile.  While Superman was determined to stop the loss of any more life, after the tragedy that killed Lois and his unborn baby, the U.S. Military and government, all the way up to the President are furious that Superman’s actions have compromised their efforts in the region.  Fearing that Superman is on a dangerous road to totalitarian rule, the government puts off the books military personal in the charge of Mirror Master, in the hope of reigning Superman in.  Their plan is to kidnap the Kent’s, trapping them in a mirror dimension.  They then blackmail Superman, that if he doesn’t end this “My Way or the High Way” war on crime, his parents will be killed and pieces of their bodies will be sent to him. This only enrages Superman further, who quickly turns to Flash to learn more about Mirror Master.  Meanwhile, at the Justice League watchtower, Wonder Woman requests the help of the rest of the Justice League’s help in the search for Mirror Master and Clark’s parents. While the rest of the Superfriends, sans Batman and Green Arrow, who have defected, go on supervillain shakedown duty. Wonder Woman goes to another war torn area of the Middle East, Kandaq. There she literally gets right in the middle of a battle between fighter jets and tanks.  After decimating the heavy artillery, she urges the soldiers on foot to lay down their weapons, in a cease fire, while a peaceful dialogue can put an end to the conflict.  As this is unfolding, the God of War, Ares appears on the battlefield. After revelling in Diana’s handy work, he questions her about a potential romantic relationship with Superman. The snark in his comments offends Wonder Woman, they fight, so she cuts off his hand and impales him with her sword, leaving him alive, but pinned to the ground.  She then leaves the warzone with Superman in toe.  The book ends with Batman waiting for the President in the White House. He tells the President that he knows he ordered the kidnapping of the Kent’s.  While Batman, doesn’t agree with that tactic, he tells the President that Superman does need to be held in check, and that he is forming a resistance.

There are two reasons I came back to this book now. The first is that I wanted another book featuring Wonder Woman to read. Second, the sequel game and comic book for this franchise is out. The sooner I read this, the faster I get to play the new game.  I’m now 9 issues into this book and while I know where Superman ultimately gets to, as of this moment in the story, I don’t disagree with his stance or more aggressive tactics.  I don’t hold killing the Joker against Superman.  Now I’m not saying every superhero should start picking off their villains.  However, had Batman killed the Joker long ago, Jason Todd wouldn’t have been beaten to death and Barbara Gordon wouldn’t have been raped or killed.  Comic books like this raise a question about our heroes.  In scenario’s like this, with exceptionally vile villains like The Joker, is it okay for our heroes to cross that line and kill?  Secondly, he what I just realised about this book is that it is the Bizarro Dark Knight Returns.  In that book, the government is worried about Batman going over the edge, with Superman having to step in and reign him in.  Here, it is the exact opposit.  It’s kind of sad that it took me so long to put that together, but it seems extra awesome now that I have.  In the scene where Wonder Woman rallies the Justice League around Superman’s cause.  Even though some of his teammates find his actions towards the Joker questionable. They all rally because of Wonder Woman’s call to arms.  It speaks to what a respected leader she is amongst the group. She is no 1B leader. She’s every bit the leader of the JLA as Superman is.  Wonder Woman has always been a character that preached peace and love first and foremost, with fighting always being a last resort. For now, at this juncture of the story, that character tenant is upheld.  When she does let loose in the Kandaq warzone, the way she just dismantles the armed and air weaponry and gets those soldiers to stand down is impressive. It will give added presence to the name Wonder Woman.  Ares’ presence in these issues is definitely the highlight for me.  His concern over a romantic union between Superman and Diana is genius.  The idea that their union could bring about a true end to conflict and war, thereby rendering him useless and moot. Tom Taylor writes the fierce and all powerful Ares, as worried and emotionally distraught over this scenario. By the end of the last issue, Ares is very different then the brash, authoritative and condescending Olympian God, when he first entered the story.

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Jheremy Raapack is back on art for these issues and these three stories are his best work in my opinion.  I’m almost certain that Zack Snyder used this artwork as a reference image for the Africa sequence in Batman v Superman: The Ultimate Edition. The way Superman defuse that missile and the look on his face as he approaches it, looks identical in the film as it does in this book.    This artist has done great things for Mirror Master’s visual credibility.  I’ll take the supped up rogue SWAT guy with a mask, over the traditional green looking long johns, any day of the week.  His mirror dimension is described and looks like 10 square kilometers of reflective sky.  That’s fantastic because it doesn’t just look like a household mirror, while also being difficult to locate for Superman, and metahuman’s like The Flash.  It’s also tricky for readers to spot, as it could be literally anywhere on the page.  The best imagery of these three books is Wonder Woman slicing the tail end of a fighter jet with her sword and head butting a tank. Yes, I said head butting a tank.   I’m not all that fond of Wonder Woman wearing pants though. Partially because I love her film costume and have it stuck in my head.  Also though, because putting pants on her was often done to appease complaints that her outfit was to scantily clad.  I think that’s the type of censorship her creator would have been against.  As for Ares, he looks like a cross between Savatar from season 3 of The Flash and a Spartan soldier, in black armor.  I had hoped hope he looked even more similar to this in the movie.

Every time I read this book, I end up kicking myself for leaving it alone for so long.  The first nine issues are so good, some of the best comics I’ve read.  So good, that I’m curious to know if the rest of Volume 1 and the current sequel are as good as this. I’ll definitely find out more quickly, as I plan on making this book a frequent habit. First though, it’s time for a few more theater screenings of Wonder Woman.

 

Beach Party a Go-Go, Part 1

(Submitted on this sublime Summer solstice by Smutmaster Eric…Thanks, Kinky Ho-mie! 🙂 xoxo)

It’s Summer once again KH readers, so go play in the ocean and watch hot bikini babes tan their tight tushes! 😉

If that’s not your thing, you can sit inside with a lemonade and enjoy the beaches in this post without getting sand in places you don’t want, or nasty sunburns you’ll spend weeks complaining about…You’re welcum!! 😉

Featuring: Lynda Carter, Penny Pax, Keiran Lee, Leslie Nielsen, Ted Danson, Diana Prince & Statue of Liberty.

Wonder Woman TV Series (1975–1979)

Summertime Crush (2014)

Keiran Lee was having a bad year, and decided to take a walk on the beach to clear his head. He was just minding his own business hanging out by the pier when sexy slut Penny Pax found him there and saw that he was clearly upset.

Creepshow (1982)

Segment: Something to Tide You Over

Richard Vickers, a vicious, wealthy psychopath whose spry jocularity belies his cold-blooded murderousness, stages a terrible fate for his unfaithful wife, Becky, and her lover, Harry Wentworth.


#FreedomFriday (2016)

Planet of the Apes (1968)
 

Bonus:

Mungo Jerry – In the Summertime (1970)

Wonder Woman Leaves The Mummy In Her Dust Retaining #1 Spot at the Box Office!

(Submitted by Prince Adam…Thanks, Heroic Ho-mie! 🙂 xo)

Over the weekend, Universal Studio’s launched its connected series of classic Monster Films with a reboot of The Mummy, While I enjoyed what turned out to be a flawed, yet entertaining film and hope it’s worldwide box office is good enough for the Dark Universe to continue, the North American box office was still fixated on the power and grace of Wonder Woman. In the U.S. and Canada, the superhero origin story collected another $58,520,627.  This coupled with strong weekday performances has led the Patty Jenkins directed film to a 10 day domestic total of $206,343,175. That number means Wonder Woman has surpassed the lifetime domestic output of Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger, Ant-Man, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men, X-Men First Class, and Superman Returns.  As I write this, it is likely surpassing the total domestic gross of Christopher Nolan’s Batman Begins.  Other Batman films, whose total Wonder Woman has absolutely eclipsed are Batman Returns and Batman Forever. As far as second weekend grosses go, Wonder Woman ranks third amongst all DC Comics films, behind only The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises.  However, against her fellow DCEU Films Wonder Woman’s second weekend haul, outperformed Man of Steel, Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad.  The reason this was possible is due to the fact that Wonder Woman only suffered a miniscule 43. 3% decline in business.  The only other superhero film able to hold that well during its second weekend, after opening on a traditional Friday was Sam Raimi’s Spider- Man in 2002. Internationally, Wonder Woman dipped a normal $58.1 Million.  This represents a 54% decline from last week. Therefore, Wonder Woman’s international intake stands at, 230,200,000. Added together Wonder Woman has ricocheted a total of $436,543,175 off of her bracelets and into Warner Brother’s bank vault.  I’ll be back next week to see how Wonder Woman fares against another new release, that being the animated threequel Cars 3.  No matter what happens, there’s no doubt that when it comes to box office, Wonder Woman has got legs and she knows how to use them.

 

#SuperheroSaturday Movie Review: Wonder Woman!!!!!!!!!!

Movie Review: Wonder Woman (Submitted with all the love by our Heroic Ho-mie, Prince Adam…Thanks, Super Friend! 🙂 xoxo)

“An Amazon princess (Gal Gadot) finds her idyllic life on an island occupied only by female warriors interrupted when a pilot (Chris Pine) crash-lands nearby. After rescuing him, she learns that World War I is engulfing the planet, and vows to use her superpowers to restore peace. Directed by Patty Jenkins” (DC Entertainment)

Wonder Woman is an iconic character of the DC library.  She is part of the famed Trinity, along with Batman and Superman. She certainly holds her own place in popular culture.  However, despite appearing in a popular live action TV series, and a slew of animated series including Super Friends and Justice League, when it comes to live action film, Wonder Woman hasn’t enjoyed the spotlight as her Trinity counterparts have.  She made her feature film debut in a fantastic extended cameo in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. However, 75 years after her inception, Themyscira’s favourite daughter is finally headlining her own live action film.  While this is obviously part of DCEU cannon, the references and nods were thankfully kept to a minimum.  Those references actually bookend the film, featuring the World War 1 photo we saw in BvS. The film starts with a delivery of the original photo in a frame, courtesy of a Wayne Enterprises delivery truck. In it, Bruce Wayne sends a letter saying; “Maybe one day, you’ll tell me your story.” This gets Diana thinking about her past and is our entry way into her origin story.  From there the story takes us to Themyscira, eventually to “Man’s World”. Specifically London, and ultimately to the front lines of World War 1.  Much like with Man of Steel’s depiction of Krypton, the scene’s set on Themyscira made me want an entire movie set there.  If you though Baby Groot was the cutest character, you’d see in a superhero film this year, little Diana will prove you wrong.  Seeing her watch the other Amazon’s train and she is mimicking their movements and also when she bargain with her mother to let her train, even if she doesn’t use the weapons with the sharp edges is just too damn cute.  Her mother says she is not meant to be a warrior and tells her the story of her people.   Ares corrupted humanity with evil and hatred and tries to overthrow the gods by killing his brothers and father.  Before his death, Zeus uses all of his power to create the Amazon’s and the private island of Themyscira for the Amazon’s to live away from the now corrupt Mankind.  Zeus creates an invisible barrier on Themyscira to keep men and Ares from finding it.  Despite Hippolyta’s protesting, young Diana begins secretly training with her Aunt Antiope.  After finding out, Hippolyta reluctantly agrees for Diana to train, in case Ares should ever return again. Diana is trained harder than the other women on the island and there is a great training montage that takes you from little Diana training, transitions to teenage Diana, and ultimately ending with Gal Gadot.  I loved this training montage, because it shows you how skilled and intense the Amazon’s are and how exceptionally gifted Diana is throughout her training.  Also, the film gives you her training, without wasting too much time on it.  These sequences are all phenomenal. When Hippolyta tells Diana the story of their people, the books images actually move. It is so inventive and unique. Almost as if a renaissance painting had been turned into a motion comic book. The idea of Diana sneaking off to train comes right from “The Lend of Wonder Woman.”  Difference being the film has Antiope train her, while in the book it was Alicippe. During her training, we find out why Hippolyta was fearful of letting Diana train.  While Diana was told that she was formed in clay and brought to life by Zeus, we later learn Hippolyta had sex with Zeus and Diana is their daughter. During her training, her natural enhanced ability when funneled through the gauntlets creates a blast after deflecting Antiope’s sword, which hurls her aunt backwards.  The film respects the history of the character by acknowledging the clay origin and the demi-God origin.  Though, I’m glad they went with the daughter of Zeus, New 52 origin, as that one is my personal preference.

The invisible barrier of Themyscira gets breached of course to allow Steve Trevor onto Paradise Island.  However, along with Steve Trevor comes a boat load of German soldiers chasing him. Since I didn’t see an explanation as to how Steve Trevor breached the barrier, or I was too mesmerized by the beauty of Themyscira itself, I’ll just assume it’s like some kind of Bermuda Triangle incident.  The arrival of Steve Trevor and his would be assailant’s, leads to one of the many great action sequences of the film.  The beach battle between the Amazons and the German’s is an incredible sequence. It looks like a hybrid between battles in 300 mixed with Gladiator. I loved how the Amazon’s fought. There was a lot of areal movement and spinning. The battle wasn’t always taking place in an upright position. The parkour aspects of the fight, combined with Zack Snyder style slow-mo, really made this fight look extra special. There’s juxtaposition of the beauty of Themyscira and the brutality of war. You could see the influence of “Man’s World” instantly tarnishing Themyscira a little bit. In addition to a cool action sequence, this scene offers up a huge moment in Diana’s development that furthers her character. During the fight, Diana’s aunt and mentor, Antiope takes a bullet to save her life. This is the first time in her life she has experienced death. Not only that but death at the hands of war. This event shakes Diana at her core. This, plus Steve telling the Amazon’s his whole story, when under the influence of the Lasso of Hestia.  He tells her, that before his plane got stranded, he was on his way back to his British General to hand over the secret plans of the Germans, who are concocting mustard gas and other poisons to prevent German surrender and turn the tide of the war. The two people spearheading this endeavour are General Ludendorff and his chief scientist Dr. Maru, aka Doctor Poison. Diana no longer glorifies or welcomes battle and warfare.  She believes Ludendorff is Ares and implores the Amazon’s to head to “Man’s World” and defeat Ares. Hippolyta emphatically says no and forbids Diana to go. Much like with her training, Diana takes the lasso of truth and the Godkiller sword, adorns the famous Wonder Woman “costume” and plans to head off to London with Steve Trevor.  The superhero costume was never explained, except for the tiara, lasso, and the Godkiller sword.  The tiara was given to Diana following Antiope’s death. Almost a rite of passage if you will.  It was already discussed that the lasso is from Hestia, and its ability is pretty straight forward, it compels those in its grasp to be honest, pure of heart and tell the truth. The Godkiller is said to be a gift from Zeus that can kill Ares, However, as we discover, that gift from Zeus, the Godkiller, is in fact Wonder Woman herself.  Much like with her training, Hippolyta, gives into Diana, allowing her to leave with Steve.  There’s a touching moment where mother and daughter build farewell to each other. This is also the first two shining example of Diana’s compassion.  That she is willing to sacrifice all she knows and those she loves, to save humanity, shows her inherent inclination for heroism, before she starts truly kicking ass! This was the first time I teared up in the film. Connie Nielsen and Robin Wright were excellent in their limited screen time! Can’t wait to see them back in the prologue for Justice League.

One of the reason this film works is because of the chemistry between Gal Gadot and Chris Pine.  He being her conduit to man’s world and she being so naïve and innocent, makes for some real heartfelt and humorous moments.  This interaction starts on Themyscira after the beach fight when Steve Trevor is bathing in what essentially is the Themyscira grotto.  As he’s getting out, Diana walks in on him! She looks at him and asks; “What’s that?” Steve believes she is asking about his package, while she is curious about his watch. There’s another scene on the boat where Diana asks Steve if he is going to sleep with her or not.  She innocently and literally is thinking about sleeping, while Steve is apprehensive because of the sexual connotations “sleeping with someone” has in “Man’s World.”  When Diana senses Steve’s apprehension, she tells him she’s read books about sex and that while men are needed for reproduction, they aren’t needed for pleasure. There’s more to these scenes but I don’t want to ruin the moment.  I thought the sexual innuendo was handled tastefully.  Adults would get the jokes, but they’d go over younger kid’s heads.  This is a sharp contrast to Guardians of the Galaxy’s overuse and overt dick jokes in the span of one scene.  Gal Gadot sells that innocence and naiveté because that’s how she comes off in interviews.  It’s so endearing.  The way Chris Pine conveys male cockiness, but awkwardness over his sexual tension towards Diana, is among one of his best performances. There are two scenes where Diana is completely awestruck by the newness and wonders of “Man’s World,” Along their travels, Steve and Diana come across a mother and her baby.  Diana immediately runs towards the baby jubilantly screaming “BABY!”, as it was the first time she had ever seen a baby.  That jubilation felt so justified and honest, which surely has something to do with Gal having two children, one of which is a relative newborn.  I’ve seen mothers react to their child or others’ children, as if they are the first they’ve ever seen, so that reaction felt complete and utterly believable. The other moment, is when Diana tries ice cream for the very first time.  She says; “This is wonderful” and tells the vendor that he “should be very proud.” I don’t care if you’re a man, woman or child, Gal Gadot’s Diana was every one of us trying ice cream for the first time. Especially since it was European ice cream.  Director Patty Jenkins has said that Superman (1978) made her want to be a filmmaker. As such, there are a couple of nods to the Christopher Reeve film.  There’s the alley sequence that we saw part of in the trailer, where she saves Steve with her bracelets, from being shot. The scene is almost identical to Clark Kent stopping a bullet from hitting Lois Lane with his hand. There’s also the scene where Diana struggles getting through the revolving doors with her sword. This is similar to Clark stumbling through the revolving door of the Daily Planet, while holding his coat. These are great nods to the original Superman movie, while putting a Wonder Woman spin on it.  If only Bryan Singer understood the fine line between homage, which is what Patty Jenkins does here and plagiarism, which constituted 90% of Superman Returns, maybe that movie would’ve actually been good. There is one portion of Diana discovering “Man’s World” that didn’t work as well for me! These scenes involve Diana shopping for a new wardrobe with Etta Candy. Don’t get me wrong, the jokes all land and Lucy Davis is incredibly funny. I even liked that Etta assisted them in locating the location of Ludendorff and Dr. Poison.  However, one of the central aspects of the Etta Candy character is her close friendship with Diana. Naturally, that’s not there yet, as they just met.  However, there’s no real inkling that much of a friendship is percolating or developing by the last frame of the World War 1 moments in the film. If the sequel doesn’t take place during a period setting, allowing a friendship to fully develop, than I feel an opportunity has been wasted and I feel for Lucy Davis.

The movie really hits another level, when Steve brings his findings about the secret gas being developed and urges his General’s to send him and a covert team to stop these nefarious plans.  The General and the rest of the Imperial War Cabinet deny his request, fearing that it would hinder the signing of the armistice with Germany.  Steve insists that Ludendorff will finish developing and deploy the gas killing many soldiers and innocents. The General’s response is simply; “They’re soldiers, they die….It’s what they do.  This response sets Diana off. She bursts into the room and verbally unleashes on the entire cabinet.  She calls them all cowards and insists that a real General would stand and fight with their soldiers, not dismiss their lives as beneath those they serve.  The energy, ferocity and conviction that Gal Gadot delivered these lines with were so rousing, that the people in my screening where all cheering.  The attitude presented by the general, seems to echo in certain news outlets covering soldiers fighting abroad today.  The fact that those people fighting are humans who are putting their life on the line for our freedoms, sometimes seems like an afterthought the way war is covered by media and governments alike. I think that partially played into the reaction at my first screening.  Diana is infuriated with Steve for seemingly going along with his General’s orders and blames human apathy as the reason Ares is able to force humans into warfare. Sensing Diana is losing faith in him, Steve wraps his arm with the lasso and reveals that he is going against his general’s orders, and with the secretive backing of Sir Patrick Morgan, the man who put forth, crafted and is negotiating the armistice.  The team Steve assembles doesn’t get as much focus as Steve and Diana, yet I liked each character and on some level, hoped and wished we could spend more time on them.  The team consists of Sameer, a spy, Charlie a marksman, and Chief, a smuggler.  Each character is going through their own issues. Sameer wants to be an actor, but is shunned by the acting community due to his skin color. Charlie is suffering from PTSD and can no longer truly hit his target. The Chief has now been reduced to selling furs and other antiquities from first nation’s people to make ends meet during wartime.  What I loved about these characters, was that they aren’t necessarily the best of humanity in terms of their past deeds, but they are coming together for the greater good of humanity,  These people reaffirm Diana’s conviction about saving humanity and blaming Ares for the horrors of war. More so, what I adore about these characters, is how compassionate Diana is to them, as she learns of their hardships.  This is specifically true of Sameer and Charlie. Diana not in so many words, tells Sameer that nothing should stand in the way of his dreams, especially skin colour.  When Charlie has a panic attack and misses his shot, he later refuses to go further with the group, because he is no use to them.  Diana protests and insists they will need his singing talent, to lift their spirits after the battle is fought.  Gal Gadot was so reassuring and nurturing to this band of ragtag soldiers.  It was the exact trait Alex Ross keyed in on in his over-sized comic book, Wonder Woman: Spirit of Truth.

So I told you Gal Gadot was great portraying Diana’s naiveté, conviction and compassion but how does she stack up as a badass warrior!? She was brilliant! We get to see Gal’s Wonder Woman in all her kick ass glory when the crew arrives at the heart of the Western Front in Belgium. They get slowed down by the enemy trenches but when Wonder Woman hears that innocents are being harmed as a result of not being able to cross “enemy lines” for basic life necessities, she takes action. The allied soldiers had tried countless times to cross “No Man’s Land” and free the village. Wonder Woman takes it upon herself to cross “No Man’s Land”, deflecting their bullets so that the Allies cross behind her and together, they liberate the village.  This is Diana’s debut as Wonder Woman and when you see it, you will have goosebumps.  Yes there’s some slow-mo in this scene, but it works brilliantly as the bullets bounce off her bracelets and then when she holds her position, blocking bullets with her shield.  The score in this scene by Rupert Gregson-Williams is slow, almost somber at first, highlighting the horrors of war, then it becomes operatic as the slow-mo kicks in.  Once Wonder Woman and the allies cross enemy lines, the scene transitions to the full liberation of the village from the German’s.  Here, we see Wonder Woman smash through a bell tower, using her now famous leg kick/sweep we’ve seen in the trailers. There’s even a moment where Wonder Woman body checks a tank and throws it over her head, before whipping and wrangling in German soldiers with her lasso.  The tank scene was obviously inspired by the scene where Wonder Woman head-butts a tank, in volume 1 of the Injustice Gods Among Us comic book. To make this extend scene even more exciting, the score ratchets up to eleven, by featuring Wonder Woman’s entrance theme from BvS aka, the “Is She With You” scene.  As far as superhero debut scenes go, this is right up there with Superman rescuing Lois and the helicopter in 78, saving the plane in Superman Returns, and his first flight in Man of Steel. As far as a pure fight scene, it stands alongside Batman’s warehouse fight from “Dawn of Justice.”  If anything, I’d rank Wonder Woman’s higher because it’s happening in a real world time period and setting, and because of the emotional significance and power, that Wonder Woman conquering “No Man’s Land” has.  This massive action sequence ends with the villagers applauding and adoring Wonder Woman, and features her, Steve and the others taking that famous photo that bookends this film and first appeared in BvS.  Seeing this moment actually take place, brings both films full circle.

Before I get into the third act of this film, I must discuss the previously mentioned villains.  Those of course being General Ludendorff and Doctor Maru. It’s quite unique that Patty Jenkins used a real life historical general for the piece. It blends the fantasy of Wonder Woman with the reality of World War 1. I though his reasoning for enlisting Dr. Poison to make the mustard gas was believable. He was disenfranchised with the German’s agreeing to surrender and wanted to prove that was the wrong choice and that the German’s could with the war with this new gas weaponry. After all, wasn’t Hitler’s rise to power and the start of World War 2 partly due to the bitterness over Germany’s surrender in World War 1?  Dr. Maru’s reasoning for siding with Ludendorff was far more flimsy for me.  After being burned and scarred, she assists Ludendorff with the gas, because she feels she’s been wronged and because Ludendorff was the only man, who gave her attention.  She was by far the weakest character in the film for me.  The film sold me on Diana’s belief that Ludendorff was Ares. I thought Danny Huston played dastardly evil, cruel and heartless well, even if his accent was a bit much on occasion. I didn’t bat an eye when he sniffed Dr. Poison’s gas. I though Areas would have to do something to restore his strength, since he likely lost his ability when Zeus struck him down from Olympus. Further cementing the Ludendorff/Ares connection for me, was the fact that he released the gas on the village Wonder Woman and the others liberated earlier in the film. Horrified, Wonder Woman squares off with Ludendorff, eventually stabbing him straight through the heart.  I thought, much like Diana did, that once Ludendorff died, Ares wold revert to his true form and that would be the beginning of the end of the war. That didn’t happen, leaving Diana almost traumatized. Steve tries to snap her out of it by telling her, that it wasn’t Ares who was responsible for the war, that it was mankind, He stresses that mankind is capable of evil and this was their doing, not to be blamed on Ares. Diana at one point is so shaken, that she reiterates her mother’s claim that mankind don’t deserve the Amazonian’s help. Steve tries to convince Diana that it’s not about human’s deserving Wonder Woman’s help, but rather whether she believes humanity is deserving of her help. He then goes off to complete the next phase of his mission.  Chris Pine delivered that line incredibly, with such power and resonance.  For me, this was Chris Pine’s greatest performance. There was so much range here.  I think he channeled two iconic Harrison Ford performances. I saw bits of Han Solo and Indiana Jones in his Steve Trevor. I loved every bit of his character.

As for Ares, he is the villain behind the curtain, but it’s obviously not Ludendorff. In a Batman Begins esque twist, Sir Patrick Morgan appears, revealing himself as Ares.  He tells Diana that the reason he was the one who proposed peace, was because he knew that humanity would reject it and revert to their base instinct of war.  He reiterates that he just whispers in their ear, telling them formula’s and such and lets them decide for themselves.  He’s put all this in motion, to show Diana that humanity doesn’t deserve the help of the God’s and that they should remake the Earth as a home for the God’s. Diana refuses and the two begin an epic battle. I was happy that in this moment, Ares took his true form and appeared in his comic book accurate God of War armor.  The fight is darkly lit and there’s fire everywhere.  I love that each fight sequence has a different color pallet.  This led to each one having a uniqueness, which sometimes lacks in the superhero genre. The Themyscira battle is so brightly lit, almost like the battle is taking place on heavenly terrain.  No Man’s land has a grey, Earthy, muddy look to it, while the battle with Aries looked like hell on Earth. At one point Diana is trapped in metallic debris, which calls to mind any cover or page that featured Diana in chains or bound.  As she sees the other members of her team destroying Dr. Maru’s lab, she also sees Steve in a bomber plane, filled with the gas, where he shoots himself, creating an explosion and destroying the gas.  Upon seeing this, Diana remembers when Steve told her he loved her.  These two factors, lead Wonder Woman to channel all her power and energy to destroy Ares, but not before telling him that she decides to stand with humanity, not because they deserve it but because she believes in love.  As I was crying at the beauty of that statement, the war ends and the film ends with present day Diana thanking Bruce Wayne via email for the picture, before flying to where she hears trouble, to save the day as Wonder Woman.

Director Patty Jenkins made a Wonder Woman film that had everything I wanted in a Wonder Woman film.  She made a movie about an Amazonian Warrior but a film that doesn’t glorify war but instead uses this Wonder Woman to inspire peace and love.  I can’t praise Gal Gadot enough. She embodies every facet of this character and now her performance is as iconic and career defining, as Christopher Reeve’s Superman performance.  If you don’t love Gal Gadot after seeing this move, there is seriously something wrong with you.  Now that I’ve seen Wonder Woman, not only is it the best of the current DCEU Films, it’s one of the best DC Comics films too. Check that, it’s one of my favourite superhero films ever made! As far as Superhero Origin Films, it’s my favourite, edging out Batman Begins and Superman: The Movie! Go see it, it truly is WONDERFUL!