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Black Panther: Movie Review

Kenny Corcoran, Athletics Editor

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Marvel has done it once again, dominating ticket sales during the weekend with “Black Panther,” another box office success. “Black Panther” is not the first superhero movie to feature a black lead (the “Blade” movies came first), but it is the first installment in Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe to center on a black lead hero. “Black Panther” has done an exceptional job relating the main character, T’Challa’s issues to those faced in reality.

Chadwick Boseman’s T’Challa returns to the fictional African nation of Wakanda following the events of “Captain America: Civil War.” He struggles with not feeling ready to be king, but even more so he is not ready to face the world without his father by his side.

In “Black Panther,” Wakanda, to the rest of the world, is seen as an extremely poor third world country. However, the poverty is all an illusion produced by the country’s high-class technology. Actually, high-class may be an understatement. Wakanda enjoys an infinite source of vibranium (the same fictional material Captain America’s shield is made of) beneath the surface. Wakanda hides from the rest of the world, as it is seen as just mountain tops and open land, but the heart of Wakanda is inside the mountains. Once entering Wakanda, the movie becomes a visual work of art. Due to its large quantity of vibranium, the Wakandans use the strongest metal on Earth to power nearly every aspect of their life, from their clothes, to their weaponry, to the gadgets and armor.

The movie has also received critical praise for its black representation. It addresses many issues that African-Americans face in today’s society and their connections to African ancestry. Not too many movies discuss these issues, and it was a fresh take on both superheroes and racial tension.

The weakest part in the movie, was Michael B. Jordan’s character as Erik Killmonger. He is the antagonist of the movie, but he really does not have a villainous presence. His character is poorly developed and does not have a lot of screen time in the first half of the movie. Towards the end of the movie, all of a sudden he is in nearly every minute of it. Due to his lack of development and presence he is not a memorable super villain.

An underrated part of this movie, is the supporting cast surrounding Boseman and Jordan. Still big actors but with smaller roles, veterans such as Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, along with young but promising actress, Lupita Nyong’o. All of these characters are very important to the storyline and development of the movie.

“Black Panther,” by many standards, was a big success, and attracted many people, becoming the fifth highest grossing opening weekend of all time. Domestically “Black Panther” brought in $235 million at the box office. Abroad, it made $169 million, for a grand total of $404 million from when it opened in theaters Thursday. “Black Panther” is not a must-watch movie but it is something worth your time and money.

 

Grade: B

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