Black Panther Review

Marvel’s newest entry in their ever-expanding cinematic universe is a fresh take on a truly classic yet unknown superhero. It’s boasts a fantastic villain but a somewhat lifeless hero.

Marvel’s Black Panther takes place shortly after the events of Captain America: Civil War and follows T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman), prince of the African nation Wakanda, as he takes the throne after his father is murdered. However, Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis), an old enemy of Wakanda, enlists the help of a vengeful outsider known as Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan), who is looking to take his shot at the throne as well. With both of these powerful enemies looking to cause havoc in Wakanda, T’Challa must take them down and earn his place as King of Wakanda.

The real standout of this movie is the film’s villain Killmonger. His story is easily the most fleshed out amongst any of the other villains in the MCU and he carries a motivation that is not only relatable but timely. Killmonger’s character is only enhanced by Michael B. Jordan’s powerful performance. Audiences will come to feel something for Killmonger after understanding his ideals, and that is definitely more than most would probably say for other villains in the MCU.

Other performance standouts include Danai Gurira’s dominating performance and Letitia Wright’s smart and fun personality will keep audience’s attached to the screen. However, these great performances by smaller characters do take away from Chadwick Boseman as the lead. Boseman never really feels like he takes control of what is happening around him and feels constantly under-whelming compared to everyone else in the movie. His calm and more humble demeanor also make him not feel as fun for audiences.

Having this kind of hero take the big-screen also means that there are less funny lines and clever quips throughout the film. Black Panther tries to divert from the typical Marvel formula and focuses on having more realistic story elements. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it just means that some viewers looking for a comedic superhero movie like Iron Man or Thor: Ragnorok might not find what they are looking for.

Regardless the film is filled with great story and cultural elements that make it an incredible standout amongst other superhero films in genre. Wakanda is both filled with technological advances and historic cultural implications that will make audiences feel that they are looking at something they have not seen in the MCU.

Also, thanks to Kendrick Lamar’s fun and upbeat score, action sequences feel fast paced and audiences will easily recognize the true differences between T’Challa and Killmonger.

Overall, Black Panther is definitely a must-see and a great new entry in the MCU as well as with the superhero movie genre. It has great cultural meanings and really brings audiences into a world that they have not seen before.

3.5

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