Monday, February 26, 2018

Black Panther

T'Challa, the King of Wakanda, rises to the throne in the isolated, technologically advanced African nation, but his claim is challenged by a vengeful outsider who was a childhood victim of T'Challa's father's mistake.
I remember seeing the Black Panther superhero show up in Captain America: Civil War, about which I remember only the basic details (plus many too-long fight scenes). However, I did remember Black Panther and the glowing reviews piqued my interest. Then a friend animatedly talked not only about the expected Marvel elements but about the fascinating point of the conflict between the hero and villain. And that piqued Tom's interest and fanned the flame of mine even hotter.

After seeing it last weekend I can say this is the only Marvel movie that I'd be interested in seeing more than once. Not only are the ideological points worth discussing, but the design and style are fresh and exciting. I really loved the used of so many African elements for architecture, clothing, and ceremonies. This movie is a visual feast.

For once, I wasn't bored during long fight scenes, largely because the action is broken up between four very different simultaneous fights. Also I loved the blending of classic superhero movie with James Bond elements. There is an inventor coming up with amazing tech, there is a counterpart to Felix from the CIA who helped James Bond (in this case the token white, instead of Felix's being the token black), and the scene in Busan screamed Bond movie. All very cleverly done.

Above all, the basic storyline is one which we all recognize but which is put forth in interesting, compelling terms. Black Panther rises above other Marvel films, however enjoyable they may be. Wakanda forever!

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