Marvel Studios is on a roll! It’s been ten years since they released the first Iron Man, and now we’re being introduced to Black Panther. Luckily, this film is still able to stand on its own even if it’s taking place in the Marvel Cinematic Universe filled with so many instalments. Taking place after the events of Captain America: Civil War, T’Challa now becomes the new king of Wakanda and has to deal with the stress of becoming Black Panther too. Also, Erik “Killmonger” Stevens wishes to take over his throne and rule the nation the way he envisions it.
Ryan Coogler does a phenomenal job in both writing and directing this movie. After making wonderful films such as Fruitvale Station and Creed, this filmmaker is now a force to be reckoned with. It’s no surprise Kevin Feige, president of Marvel Studios, decided to hire him to be the director. He is able to showcase the fictional nation of Wakanda to its fullest potential with stunning visuals and cinematography. Props to cinematographer Rachel Morrison, who’s able to give the audience an immersive experience with the help of IMAX cameras. The landscape shots alone are beautifully filmed. Their culture is just so interesting to explore, and you want to know more about it. Even the costume design is absolutely great with its vibrant colours representing a new style of African culture. Like Asgard being a people not a place, it feels the same way with Wakanda. Like Guardians of the Galaxy, this film also carries an incredible soundtrack. Curated by the talented rapper Kendrick Lamar, all the songs showcased in Black Panther are absolutely incredible.
While being a supporting character in Civil War, Chadwick Boseman is incredibly fantastic in the lead role as T’Challa/Black Panther. Even when he’s not wearing the suit, his charisma still carries the film. It’s great seeing him evolve from a guy wanting revenge to a king learning how to rule an entire nation. The rest of the cast is also stellar with actors such as Lupita Nyong’o, Danai Gurira, and Letitia Wright, who all have great chemistry with Boseman. Their performances bring so much energy to the movie that it’s hard to imagine Black Panther without these characters. Known for his collaborations with Ryan Coogler, Michael B. Jordan really stands out as the main antagonist Killmonger. When we see him appear on screen for the first time, he does seem a little clichéd. But then you understand where he’s coming from even if you don’t condone his actions. When he refers to aspects of what African Americans went through in the past, it makes his personal motivation quite impactful.
Black Panther is one of the best films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While still being a really entertaining superhero popcorn flick, it still is an interesting story about a man wanting to become a good king for his people. Ryan Coogler should be highly praised for making another great film, and it’ll be exciting to see what he will do next as a filmmaker. Next stop: Infinity War!
Black Panther is now playing in theatres.