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  • Don Ford

Don Reviews "Black Panther"

There are people who feel Hollywood is milking the superhero film genre for every dollar they can get. Most of them are big budget, CGI-heavy event films from some of the best studios in the world. I personally think that maybe they are making them just because they can due to an almost guaranteed huge payday, but when is it too much? Some of them get into a basic mold of a superhero that takes on an evil entity with a bunch of action that tries to compensate for that basic plot.

“Black Panther” is the new film directed by Ryan Coogler (Creed, Fruitvale Station) and stars Chadwick Boseman (42, Get on Up), Michael B. Jordan (Fantastic Four, Creed), Lupita Nyong’o (12 Years a Slave, The Jungle Book), Danai Gurira (The Visitor, Robot Chicken), Martin Freeman (The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, Cargo), Daniel Kaluuya (Get Out, Sicario), and Letitia Wright (Black Mirror, The Commuter). Based around the Marvel Comics property, T’Challa (Boseman) becomes not only the new king of Wakanda after the death of his father in the events of “Captain America: Civil War,” but also the mantle of Black Panther. His country has a major supply of the element Vibranium (which is also what Captain America’s shield is made of) from a meteor that landed there centuries earlier, and is very protective of its abilities from the outside world. Along comes Erik (Jordan), who also has royal blood, but was shunned and living outside of the country for his life. What follows is the story of T’Challa dealing with their sibling rivalry as well as becoming king, protecting his country, and putting the pieces of his country and people back together.

The CGI is very good in this film, truly enhancing the scenery and the locations looked. Taking place mostly in Africa, so I was interested in how my wife Faith, a native of the continent, felt about the visuals. (She was also very impressed.) When it comes to the acting, I think it the cast does well overall. Boseman does very well as the lead, and truly encompasses the character. I also thought Jordan (who has worked on all three Coogler films) does as the opposition to T’Chala. My shout-out here goes to Wright, whose character and personality really enhances the film. Her character may be a part of the royal family, but she adds great humor, and every time I saw her smile I knew I was going to laugh.

“Black Panther” is about two hours and fifteen minutes long, which may be a little shorter than the normal superhero film, but for this one, it was just about the right length. It flows well and did not drag at all with a good mix of plot and action and for me felt more of a personal story than most superhero films. I admit that although I have no “Greek Cred” compared to the rest of the people on our show, the normal moviegoer who does not know every in and out of the Marvel universe can enjoy this film and not be worried about knowing “subplot 299(a) from Comic # 626 from Marvel library # 3”. (There are two “tags” at the end of the film, so it is worth staying through the entire credits.) I was really enjoyed this film and surprised how good it is, so I am giving this film the coveted fill price in the theaters review.

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