PROFESSOR MARSTON AND THE WONDER WOMEN
released 10 November 15 | 107 minutes Director angela robinson Cast luke evans, rebecca Hall, bella Heathcote, Connie britton
William Moulton Marston was a bit of a kinky bugger, and you can see his sexual proclivities laid bare in the Wonder Woman stories he wrote in the ’40s. There’s bondage, spanking, domination, submission... enough to get the authorities sniffing around him. As if that wasn’t enough, he had a polyamorous relationship with his wife Elizabeth (Rebecca Hall) and their student Olive (Bella Heathcote).
It’s an intriguing setup, but the execution is uneven. The film can’t decide if it wants to be a love story, a kink-fest or a hymn to Wonder Woman – and in trying to split itself, the result is either too heartfelt, awkwardly erotic or confusing (Marston’s arguments about how Wonder Woman is “empowering women” because she submits to Steve Trevor make no sense whatsoever).
It’s still enjoyable, though, and Hall in particular gives a mesmeric performance as Elizabeth, a spiky feminist in an era that couldn’t comprehend such a thing. You might not learn much about Wonder Woman that you didn’t already know, but you’ll certainly appreciate the courage of those who fought against the norms of society in a less enlightened age. Jayne Nelson