Are you all enjoying the Blackest Black History Month this side of the 21st Century? We are. With the release of Black Panther just days away, it’s getting really intense in these movie going streets. Folks can’t WAIT to see the movie, and have already planned out their outfits for opening weekend. I was one of the few press and fans to see the WORLD PREMIERE last week, and boy was it something! If you missed that post, you can find it >HERE<
The movie is set in Wakanda, and picks up from the end of Avengers: Civil War. Don’t worry though, this movie is ALL Black Panther, and what a great way to show his origin. As we all know, each king of Wakanda is the Black Panther, and we’re told the story of T’Chaka’s rise as the black panther after his father’s murder in Civil War, and it’s glorious. The movie is bright like all Marvel movies are, but there’s something regal about it. The golds of the screen are rich and not subtle, because director Ryan Coogler, doesn’t want them to be. He wants the beauty of Wakanda and its inhabitants in your face, and you won’t mind one bit.
The cinematography is so stunning that I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen, and we were front row. Usually, that makes me a bit ill, but it worked out beautifully. Outside of the very first action scene, the shots were in full color and panned wide so that you could enjoy every aspect of it. I appreciated the fact that the players took their roles as warriors seriously, and you could really tell with the interactions. The women, the men – every ounce of energy they had was put into their scenes, and academy award nominated director of photography Rachel Morrison, gives us her all too.
Given that you have 10 days until the premiere, you have a bit of time to gird your loins. You WILL laugh, and possibly cry? I didn’t, but there were several people sniffling several rows behind us. I’m not sure if it was from pure glee at seeing so much melanin on the screen, or the story-line. They’re both reason enough to shed tears of joy.
Can I also say that the women being FABULOUS in this movie gave me all the feels? Seeing women be who they were meant to be in life was just so refreshing. Whether it was maternal, romantic, leader or inventor. Women were represented in every single aspect. The scene below – which is teased in several trailers was probably my favorite start of a segment in the movie. Trusting your team is so very necessary in order to come out on top. And can I just go on record and say that Okoye (Danai Gurira) is one of the BADDEST warriors I’ve seen in a long time. The power that she and all of the lead women in general show throughout the film is so palate cleansing. It was just a breath of fresh air to see US being US when we needed to be.
The movie is high energy from the moment it starts to the final scene. Killmonger makes a fantastic antagonist to the protagonist of T’Challa and the other threads that need tying up in the movie do so. Let’s not even mention the fact that the smartest living being on the planet – Shuri – is in charge of all of the technology in the country, and she legit geeks out over her own creations.
The relationship between Shuri and T’Challa is also one that is very important to the storyline. We all know from the universe that Shuri takes on the responsibility of Black Panther when the king is out of the country, and judging from the way that she goes all in with her inventions, I figure she’ll have no problem donning the big cat suit.
The movie is a little over two hours, but it IS a Marvel film which means that when it’s over you should NOT get up an leave. There is some death on scene, but no blood from those deaths that I remember, just some during two fighting scenes. Our 7 year olds will be allowed to see it, as they do know the difference between reality and fiction, and what we expect them NOT to do. Swearing is also limited, so no worries there. There’s one instance of a character flipping the bird (yep, even in Wakanda) so if that’s an issue, I suggest you work it out.
Can you take a bathroom break? Not if it’s your first time seeing the film. Take one the second or third time. Otherwise, you’ll miss key elements and then kick yourself. There are some one-liners that are going to be used from here until the end of the year, so just get ready for that too.
If you’ve forgotten what you’re in for, here’s a trailer to tide you over. But if you just want to go off of my review – you’re going to love the movie. Immensely. It’s just what we’ve been waiting for.
Black Panther hits theaters February 16th! Get your tickets now!