Wonder Woman 1984 Review

Grace Logan, Writer

Wonder Woman 1984 was a disappointment compared to Patty Jenkins’ previous Wonder Woman film. 

The movie begins with a flashback of young Diana, played by Lilly Aspell, competing in an athletic tournament on Themyscira against more experienced Amazon warriors. Aside from the energetic nature of this opening scene and mild foreshadowing, it seemed to serve no purpose. Throughout the rest of this film, we never see young Diana again. I felt this film missed a great opportunity to dive more into Diana’s childhood. Spontaneously throwing in a random flashback seemed very unnecessary if it wasn’t going to be continued throughout the film.   

I was extremely pleased with the original Wonder Woman film released in 2017. In that movie, we saw the demise of Diana’s love interest and World War One (WWI) comrade Steve Trevor (played by Chris Pine). I would have never thought that the DC Extended Universe (DCEU) would bring back this character in such an unplanned way. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy seeing Chris Pine in a checkered neck scarf and parachute pants, but bringing back someone who had a major impact on Diana’s character for a short period of time made the movie seem overly shallow. I don’t see the point in reincarnating characters in such a reckless fashion. For reference, I believe Marvel did it correctly with Avengers: Endgame.   

The soundtrack can usually make or break a film. Unfortunately, it didn’t help Wonder Woman 1984 by any means. DCEU used the typical serious music we would associate with most superhero films, which would have been fine and dandy if Wonder Woman 1984 wasn’t based in the 1980s. It was such a missed opportunity. I went into the theater hoping to hear some traditional 1980s music like Queen, Twisted Sister, Bon Jovi, AC/DC or maybe even Mötley Crüe. What I got was the complete opposite. It also contradicted the other elements that perfectly portrayed the 1980s. 

Another problem I had with this film was that I had no idea how it contributes to the other DCEU films and characters. To my knowledge the majority of characters, aside from Shazam, reside within the same universe -this can be seen in Justice League where Woman Wonder teams up with Batman following Superman’s death. In Justice League, it seems Diana had been working in a museum following what transpired in the first Woman Woman and completely retired from “hero-work.” In Wonder Woman 1984 she is working in a museum, however, we see Diana frequently rescuing people. Also if the Dreamstone (a powerful cursed object that has the ability to grant dreams for a steep price) had such a major impact on the world, wouldn’t other superheroes get involved? 

As mentioned before (and shown in the title) this new installment in the Wonder Woman saga was set during the 1980s, however, I didn’t see many references to the Cold War. Ignoring this all together, while simultaneously adding too many elements such as Steve Trevor, Asteria (an Amazon warrior) as well as her armor (a prized object among Amazons), Cheetah (played by Kristen Wiig) and many more buried the theme of the movie. I would have greatly preferred if this movie just focused on one of these elements; maybe just Diana locating Asteria’s armor or the creation of Cheetah. 

To compare the budget, the previous Wonder Woman film cost around $120-150 million and received $822.3 million from the Box Office. Wonder Woman 1984 had a budget of $200 million and has thus far made $142.5 million. 

As much as I have complained about this movie, I did enjoy the theme. It revolved around unity and struck a blow in the common theme of the greed of humanity. I also have an obsession with Gal Gadot (Wonder Woman), so any movie she is in I’m prone to enjoy. Kristen Wig is also another actress who I’m very fond of. It was slightly amusing to see her slowly morph into a cheetah (making bolder fashion choices with animal prints throughout the film until she completely became a cheetah woman). I do prefer Cheetah’s original design from the comics. As mentioned previously, elements such as the clothing, cars and shops were all on point! 

Despite all my grievances, overall I would recommend taking the time to watch this movie. Its theme plays heavily into political controversy and the lack of unity the nation is currently caught up in. I also thank DCEU for continuing to release movies in theaters and bringing light to these dark times. Overall, it was a nice break to sit down and watch Wonder Woman 1984.