Black Panther review

Hadley Hudson, Co-Editor in Chief

Superhero movies are all the rage lately in today’s cinematic world. In the past few months, about four huge superhero movies have been released and they have all boomed in popularity. However, none of them can compare to Black Panther. Undeniably well made with detailed characters, a complex and interesting plot, and overall beautiful cinematography, Black Panther is an unmissable movie to watch! With all of these things and more, it has made a huge mark in the movie industry.

Black Panther centers around King T’Challa, of the fictional African country Wakanda. Many years ago, an asteroid fell on the earth in Africa and the land in that area was given bountiful amounts of the most powerful metal in the world. Also, a magical plant can give someone superpowers, and grant them the title of Black Panther as well as protector and king of Wakanda. Marvel fans met T’Challa in the last Avengers movie, Civil War, but we got to see a completely different side of him this time. In Civil War, T’Challa was poised, classy, and mysteriously charming. In Black Panther, he goes home to his family and gets roasted at every turn. The characters in Wakanda are just as interesting, even though they are without superpowers. Nakia, played by Lupita Nyong’o, is T’Challa’s ex-girlfriend and elite spy of the Wakandan government. Shurri (Letitia Wright) is the genius princess of Wakanda who uses the power of their metal to create insanely advanced technological and scientific advancements. Okoye (Danai Gurira) is the general of Wakanda’s troops and the country’s best warrior.

All of these characters, and more, move together so cohesively that it isn’t noticeable that every single one of them has a interesting individual plot of their own. For example, M’Baku (Winston Duke), my personal favorite character, is a minor character in only a few central scenes yet he shines and has depth for those scenes he is in. Another extremely well created character is Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). Killmonger is the antagonist in the story, but despite his evil and hateful nature as a person he remains understandable. As an audience member, I felt empathy for Killmonger for the entire movie.

Another amazing aspect of Black Panther is the complex plot. I have watched it twice and it remains unsettling for me. Wakanda is a beautiful paradise posing as a third world country, refusing aid from the outside world and refusing to give aid to its neighbors. T’Challa struggles with the idea of giving aid to the world, outright refusing to do so in the beginning. Killmonger represents a strong and harsh contrast to Wakanda and its ideals because, as an African American, he grew up facing hardship every day because of the lowered status of black people in America. While Killmonger wants to take over the world and become an fearful empire to avenge the horrific treatment of his people and his ancestors, T’Challa and the people of Wakanda do not understand the reason why Killmonger wants that so badly. Wakanda represents a pure and untouched Africa- what would have happened to the African people if they were not enslaved, transported, colonized, and terrorized. Killmonger represents what happened to modern African people because of Wakanda’s ignorance of the outside and focus on its purity.

Overall, Black Panther was a beautiful movie. Simply, that is all there is to say. It is a truly amazing and beautiful movie. It transcends the normal superhero cookie cutter routine and creates a truly diverse and amazing film for anyone to see. Personally, I have seen it twice in theaters and I cannot wait to see it more. I rate it a 5/5 stars.