Critics are lavishing praise on the groundbreaking Marvel’s Black Panther in the first official reviews of the latest MCU entry.
Much like DC’s Wonder Woman broke new ground for the female-led blockbuster last year, Black Panther is making history as the first-ever MCU instalment based around a majority black cast.
That’s a huge milestone in and of itself, but the bonus is that critics think that, like Wonder Woman, Black Panther is a really, really good movie judged by any standards. Ahead of the film’s release, take a look at some of the glowing reviews below:
“The intriguing thing about Black Panther is that it doesn’t look like a superhero film – more a wide-eyed fantasy romance: exciting, subversive and funny.”
“While the themes are deep, Black Panther is at the same time a visual joy to behold, with confident quirkiness (those aforementioned war rhinos), insane action sequences and special effects, and the glorious reveal of Wakanda, whose culture is steeped in African influences but which also offers a jaw-dropping look at what a city of the future could be.”
“The arc of the Marvel universe is long, but it’s finally bent toward Black Panther. It always seemed counterintuitive that the same sprawling cinematic realm that (along with DC) so readily welcomed creatures blue and green, Ant-Men and Wolverines, took so long to put a black superhero at the center of the screen. Now that the moment has arrived though, it feels like nothing less than a sea change: a wave started by Wonder Woman last year and grown to full swell in Panther’s moral weight and real-world currency.”
“Black Panther pounces toward the head of the class in a way that should make the King, and his key subjects, a cornerstone of an already-formidable roster.”
“Black Panther isn’t just levelling out representation in Hollywood, it’s inspiring the next generation of real-life heroes, and that’s what makes this film truly magnificent.”
“Boseman certainly holds his own, but there are quite a few charismatic supporting players here keen to steal every scene they can — and they do, notably the physically imposing Jordan, the radiant Nyong’o and especially Wright, who gives her every scene extra punch and humor.”
“There aren’t many superhero films that blow you away with thunderous effects and also tackle ethnic and gender issues, crush racial stereotypes, celebrate women and condemn Trump-era notions of exclusionism. It’s easier and way more commercial to be oblivious. But that’s not Coogler’s style. Written and directed by African Americans who make up most of the cast, the film has taken flak from critics who believe that Marvel is hijacking African traditions to sell tickets, bemoaning the fact that the film was mostly shot in Atlanta instead of Africa. But the accusations ring hollow and ignore the mint-fresh inventiveness and passionate commitment to the black experience that’s instilled in every frame. It’s impossible not to cheer Boseman as T’Challa emerges as Marvel’s once and future king. Say this about Black Panther, which raises movie escapism very near the level of art: You’ve never seen anything like it in your life. Wakanda forever!”
“Coogler has taken every genre in which black characters are traditionally sidelined, and then, with considerable flair and boldness, he’s combined those genres and put black characters right at their heart.”
“In their print form, comic books have led the way in terms of representation and inclusivity, long empowering non-white, non-male characters in their pages. Although previous big-screen examples certainly exist – among them Wesley Snipes’ Blade and Will Smith’s Hancock – Black Panther celebrates its hero’s heritage while delivering one of Marvel’s most all-around appealing standalone installments to date. Going forward, Black Panther will join the ranks of the Avengers, further diversifying their ranks. In the meantime, it’s awesome to see Black Power celebrated in such a mainstream fashion.”
“As with Jordan Peele’s Get Out, or Coogler’s 2015 Rocky spin-off Creed, Black Panther isn’t a novelty, but a fresh perspective on a well-worn format. Not to get all Rosa Parks about it, but the film walks into the multiplex like it’s insane that it hasn’t been allowed in there all along. And it is.”
“Most big studio fantasies take you out for a joy ride only to hit the same exhausted story and franchise-expanding beats. Not this one.”
“Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther is one of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s most powerful, moving, and thematically resonant films to date. It’s also one of its most uneven, when all is said and done. Marvel Studio’s Phase 3 still has yet to produce a single bad movie. Having said that, Black Panther‘s clunky first act, sometimes cumbersome cast size, and hit-or-miss visuals make this one of Phase 3’s most inconsistent entries to date.”
Marvel’s Black Panther opens in UK cinemas on February 13 and February 16 in the US. Watch a trailer below:
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