A su­per­hero movie with the woman in charge? Won­ders never cease!

Daily Mail - - Election 2017 -

K A-POW! She made her first ap­pear­ance in a DC comic 76 years ago, then she twirled around in star-span­gled hot­pants dur­ing a 1970s tele­vi­sion se­ries. How­ever, it has taken un­til now for this she- cru­sader to fi­nally star in her own film.

Won­der Woman opens this week, with Is­raeli ac­tress Gal Gadot star­ring as a re­booted Diana Prince, the warrior who bat­tles evil forces armed only with her god-killer sword, her magic metal cuffs and some re­ally great lip­stick shades.

This Diana is long of thigh and short of skirt, as tra­di­tion de­mands, while un­der her swelling C-cup breast­plate, there lurks a heart formed of good­ness and gold – for Won­der Woman 2017-style is still a girl who knows where her duty lies.

‘If no one else will de­fend the world’, she cries early on, ‘then I must!’ About time, too. Of the 55 comic-book films pro­duced by Hol­ly­wood in the last decade, none have been cen­tred on a solo fe­male char­ac­ter.

It has been four decades since Lynda Carter starred as Diana in the TV adap­ta­tion of the comic book char­ac­ter’s tale.

She is back, and once more the fu­ture of jus­tice be­gins with her – which is what no­body said about Labour’s Diane Ab­bott, ever.

So is the new Won­der Woman the ul­tra su­per­heroine feminists have been wait­ing and longing for? Ac­tu­ally, she is pretty darned mar­vel­lous.

Gadot’s Diana looks like a young An­gelina Jolie who has grown strong on pasta and cream and knows how to twirl her Lasso of Truth – yes, she’s still got it, in more ways than one.

Diana is not just strong and kick­ass, she is also kind, warm and not pre­pared to ac­cept the death of civil­ians and sol­diers as col­lat­eral dam­age – like the pesky men do.

She is also no slouch in the com­bat depart­ment. There are bone­s­plin­ter­ing scenes when Won­der Woman smashes men to bits, ab­so­lutely pul­veris­ing them to man­rub­ble in that comic-book way – and I have to ad­mit, my heart soared. Wham, bam, thank you ma’am.

Her mythic back­story has lit­tle changed. Diana, daugh­ter of Queen Hip­polyta, comes from a tribe of Ama­zons who live on a man-free is­land that looks a bit like Capri, only with fewer prosecco bars. ‘My mother sculpted me from clay and I was brought to life by Zeus,’ Diana ex­plains, dis­play­ing an un­sure grasp of bi­ol­ogy, even though she can speak 100 lan­guages. She’s got an aunt in the army called An­tiope (Robin Wright, lovely scars) who teaches her how to fight and shoot three ar­rows at once.

Soon, Cap­tain Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) ar­rives on the is­land, a hand­some spy who so typ­i­fies the all-Amer­i­can, square-jawed hero that he looks as if he might have padded up with a cou­ple of boiled ea­gle eggs in each cheek.

‘Wow’, he says, when he first looks at Diana, and we all know it won’t be too long be­fore they are mak­ing Mal­teser eyes at each other and hav­ing su­per­hero, eveof-bat­tle sex. Dis­creetly of course.

THEIRS

is the Clark Kent/Lois Lane re­la­tion­ship at the heart of the film – with the twist be­ing that he is the sec­ondary Lois char­ac­ter, for­ever at her mercy, smitten by her charm, run- ning at her heels. To­gether, they leave to fight the War to End All Wars and with 25mil­lion dead in over 27 coun­tries, it’s a big ask.

They visit ‘ jolly old Lon­don’ which she thinks is ‘hideous’, but she needs to get kit­ted out in proper clothes – but what’s this? High heels she can’t run in, dresses that con­strict?

Won­der Woman won­ders if corsets are ar­mour and is puz­zled when their pur­pose is ex­plained.

‘Why do women have to hold in their stom­achs?’ she won­ders.

‘Only some­one with­out a stom­ach would ask that,’ says Steve’s sec­re­tary Etta (Lucy Davis, who is hi­lar­i­ous).

It’s all pre­pos­ter­ous non­sense of course, but good fun and a big sum­mer hit – if a lit­tle too dark for younger chil­dren. And it is in­ter­est­ing that a film which tries so hard to ad­dress gen­der balance re­lies so heav­ily on clumsy stereo­types else­where; the bad­dies are still the Ger­mans (plus Turks), the Scots­man is a drunk, the Ital­ian a flirt and so on. The Bri­tish gen­er­als just bum­ble around be­ing lux­u­ri­antly-mous­ta­chioed cow­ards, wait­ing for an im­petu­ous Amer­i­can hero in a fly­ing jacket to save the day.

In the end, Won­der Woman has a mes­sage – and a warn­ing – for all wom­ankind.

The first is that only love can save the world. The sec­ond is to be care­ful in the World of Men, for they do not de­serve you.

Tell us some­thing we don’t know, girl­friend.

‘Strong and kick­ass’: Gal Gadot as Won­der Woman

jan moir

ON THE FE­MALE-FRIENDLY COMIC-BOOK BLOCK­BUSTER Won­der Woman ★★★✩✩

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