Black Panther

Black Panther is the latest film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and the last before Infinity War. This film is the gem in Marvel’s crown, being both the most unique and stylistically different. This fresh style helps to give the film a real sense of identity, although parts of it do follow the usual Marvel formula. The direction of this film is very strong, with Ryan Coogler, making this a very distinct film, that juggles a lot of different themes and is still a coherent thought-provoking film. The script is marvellous managing to deconstruct and flip some classic tropes on their heads. The humour is the usual Marvel fare, with only a few jokes really working for me. Honestly, humour plays a much smaller role in this film than it does in other MCU films, for the most part, the tone is quite serious. The characters are all spectacular, with Chadwick Boseman making a great Black Panther delivering both humour and emotion with ease, whilst also being very believable. The two standouts from the cast, at least for me personally, were Danai Gurira as Okoye and Letitia Wright as Shuri. Gurira was fantastic as Okoye because of the sheer physicality of her performance, all the action sequences featuring her were very impressive. Wright’s performance was great because right from the first scene she was my favourite, she stole the show for the most part and had some of the funniest lines in the entire film. The other performances were also pretty solid with Martin Freeman’s Everett Ross being very enjoyable. On the villain front, this film is quite unlike the other MCU films, both the villains in the film are outstanding, with Michael B Jordan’s Killmonger, being particularly compelling. His character motivations are all understandable and believable, adding a sense of moral ambiguity to the whole preseedings. Klaue played by Andy Serkis is another returning character from the MCU, having appeared in Age of Ultron. I loved every minute Klaue was on screen he chewed every piece of scenery in the way every great villain should. Where most MCU films have no great antagonists, this film thrives and has two. This film is not very connected to the larger MCU with the returning characters and references being the main connective tissue. However, I believe that it was a wise decision as it gives the film a much more personal feel. Furthermore, this allows this film to focus on its worlds and its characters, making them feel real. Despite all this praise, there are a few issues, mainly underused characters and plot holes. Daniel Kaluuya’s character of W’Kabi is an example of this. W’Kabi’s character does things in the later portion of the film that makes no sense as he flips emotions with no real reason. Making you question why he would do that. In short bad writing. Furthermore, the film does suffer from a little blot in its second act, with it running on for a little too long. All of these negatives are completely out weighted by all the positive, so whilst this may not be in the top 5 MCU films it’s definitely important and a very enjoyable film.
reviewed by Luke

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