Wonder Woman (the film) is far from perfect, but it IS the best and most enjoyable entry so far in the DC Extended Universe (DCEU). A lot was hinging on it. With Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad universally panned by critics, another DCEU flop could spell doom for the franchise (not in terms of box office sales, but credibility among critics). But fortunately, and obviously, it has done well and as a DC fanboy myself, I can let out a sigh of relief. Though I still stand firmly on my opinion that BvS was great!
So, what is it that Wonder Woman got right? Let's dive straight right into it.
1. GAL GADOT, GAL GADOT, AND GAL GADOT
Ok where should I start regarding Gal Gadot? She's gorgeous, beautiful, and simply fantastic! And kudos to the producers, i.e. director Patty Jenkins, and writers Allan Heinberg and Zack Snyder on doing such an awesome job on casting Gal Gadot and writing her story. In BvS, we saw a mature Diana Prince that seemed somewhat jaded by the world. But in Wonder Woman, Diana was innocent, naive, and like a fish out of water, seeing the world outside Themyscira for the first time. And that really appealed to me as an audience. For the things that Wonder Woman didn't get right, just watching at Gal Gadot makes all the mistakes seem so small and insignificant. Simply put, she's magic! It's almost as if she wasn't made for the role of Wonder Woman, but the role of Wonder Woman was made for her!
2. THE TRAILERS DIDN'T REVEAL TOO MUCH
This is where BvS got it totally wrong. Too much was revealed in its trailers. By watching all of them, smart DC fans could have guessed most of the plot already. Hell, even the final villain Doomsday was revealed. Nothing much was known about Wonder Woman's plot before its release. We knew that it'd touch on her origin story, it takes place in WWI, and... yep, I think that was pretty much it. Perhaps it helps that the Wonder Woman (the character) universe isn't very well known, even among casual DC fans. The final villain was definitely a surprise.
3. THE CAST AND THEIR CHEMISTRY
Suicide Squad made a mess in this aspect. The cast was simply too star-studded and everyone had to be a main character, leaving no room for supporting cast. Chris Pine (Steve Trevor), Robin Wright (Antiope), Connie Nielsen (Hippolyta), Ewen Bremmer (Charlie), Said Taghmaoui (Sameer), Eugene Brave Rock (Chief) and Lucy Davis (Etta Candy, Steve Trevor's secretary) all did both an awesome job in their own roles, and in supporting Gal Gadot's. Great scriptwriting also brought out awesome chemistry between the characters, though I've to add that some lines were pretty cringe-worthy. I have always known Chris Pine as just a looker, but his performance for Wonder Woman was top class. In terms of purely acting, I'd say he actually did the best job among all cast members, even Gal Gadot. The romance between Steve Trevor and Diana was not only well written but really fleshed out by the actors' performance. And there were no outright cheesiness in their lines too!
4. THE PACING OF THE FILM
Wonder Woman had a perfect balance of storytelling and action sequences and an interlacing of the two. BvS saved almost all of the action for the second half of the movie, while Suicide Squad had erm, almost no plot at all. Thus, even though Wonder Woman didn't have the best narrative, it moved at a good pace (not too fast or slow) and it didn't really allow the audience to ponder too much on what went wrong.
I'd love to hear your comments on Wonder Woman! Let me know them :)