Does Wonder Woman Mark a New Direction for the DCEU?
Without a question, Patty Jenkin’s film “Wonder Woman”, has swept the world. Starring Gal Gadot, the film has received almost universal praise and marks a distinct shift in direction from the other films that comprise the DCEU. While the previous films weren’t the train wreck some critics made them out to be, they all lacked what this film has brought to the table. The question remains: Is this film a one-hit wonder or is it a new direction for the DCEU?
With the undeniable success of the film, one has to imagine that Warner Bros. Pictures is sensible enough to recognize an opportunity when they see one. This doesn’t mean they need to compromise their vision; it just means they can get there differently. “Wonder Woman” doesn’t shy away from showing the ugly, close up, horrors of war and the levels of darkness the human spirit can descend to, but it also shows the triumph of the will, the heights that humans can aspire to reach if they wished to.
Sure, “Man of Steel” tries to teach of about hope and with Superman presumed dead at the end of BvS, this is a PERFECT opportunity for them to cast the Man of Steel in a new light after his inevitable resurrection. Death does have a way of putting things in perspective and Superman’s resurrection presents the perfect opportunity to reconfigure the character to be that beacon of hope.
Things were not necessarily pointing in that direction with Cavill having posted a photo on Instagram of a close up of what appeared to be a black suit. But there is still hope. Superman’s death was selfless and heroic, sacrificing himself to kill Doomsday. This, as well as the (in)famous Martha scene, prompts Batman, played by Ben Affleck to step up and want to make a difference with the help of Wonder Woman.
That’s right. It’s Wonder Woman who needs to be at the heart of all of this. In the film. Wonder Woman marches across No Man’s Land, taking the fire and the risks, but nonetheless, leading those who she knows can do better across the field. This film can do the same. It veered from the tone, color pallet of BvS. It has the charm and warmth that were absent from Man of Steel, and has the genuine comedy and heart that weren’t really organic in Suicide Squad. I could go on about the breathtaking score and cinematics but I won’t. What is important is that it was different and it succeeded as can future films if they stay in the same vein.
It may be too late for Justice League film coming out in November to change anything (although Whedon might be able to weave some of his magic) but who’s to say that it doesn’t try and follow some of the same things that made Wonder Woman such a success (and I don’t mean just at the box office). There is a strong, charming, beautiful template that Wonder Woman has provided for the DCEU. I’m not talking about uniformity by I am talking about a commitment to the things that make superhero movies well…wonderful.