Wakanda’s Finest

The Black Panther movie is a superhero movie unlike any other with its breathtaking art and culture. The movie has a diverse cast something you rarely see in Marvel superhero movies. This movie also focuses on worldwide controversial topics such as human trafficking and racial history. Many people thought that a movie with a minority cast couldn’t do big-time Hollywood blockbusters, let alone superhero movies, but this movie proved those critics wrong it made 631 million domestically in ticket sales and grossed 1.3 worldwide. This move showed just how open audiences can be towards a culturally and socially aware movie, even if it has a minority cast.  From the African drums to the cool futuristic planes this movie keeps you on your heels for excitement. This movie is worth watching for its innovation, it’s cinematography and its culturally relevant message.
The movie like all Marvel movies was based on a comic book written by the late Stan Lee. Black Panther debut in 1966 Fantastic Four issue called “Adventure to Wakanda”. The place where our hero’s homeland and the main story is held is called Wakanda, a fictional futuristic African city. Where Wakanda is truly different from normal African cities is that it was never touched by Europeans and other foreigners, which gives a viewer the idea of what would have happened to African’s countries if foreigners didn’t come in and take over.
In America, there are a lot of social problems that affect its people. Black Panther goes into depth with these problems which is very surprising for a Marvel movie. It comes out at a perfect time because the social and political tension is so high. It gives the viewer a fresh sense of the change that needs to take place in order for things to get better.  It also gives the minority boy or girl a superhero that they can look up to. This movie had the hype, especially in the black community. Famous African American such as Kendrick Lamar and TDE bought out 3 cinemas for kids to see and T.I. gave out 300 tickets for people to see the film. LeBron James called it one of the greatest movies he has ever seen and was very needed in the times we’re in. This is just a little taste of the hype the movie brought but did it live up to it?
As far as box office sales the movie went far beyond expectations by grossing 1.3 billion dollars in revenue. When it comes to the quality of the movie we first need to know what makes a movie good. According to in an article called “5 Things that Make a Good Film” by Penny Forles gives an idea of what a good film is. Penny first states that a good movie needs good characters and Black Panther delivers. First, with our hero T’Challa with his funny charm and noble cause,is as good of a hero as can be. It only makes everyone root for the guy. Then the story gives us villains who are likeable such as Ulysses Klaue and Erik Killmonger. Klaue is the cartoon-like villain who’s trying to make some money whereas Killmonger brings us a different look at the everyday Marvel villain. Killmonger’s ideals will have the viewer thinking and wondering if he is really in the wrong. The Second item necessary to having a good movie is a simple plot which this movie has. Not to Spoil it, but it is the simple hero fall and rise in order to save the world plot. Forles states “that a plot of a movie can make or break a film so you don’t what it too complex”. The Next item in Forles essay is the theme which is also simple in this movie. The theme changes from beginning to end and that’s how the viewer who has watched this film will leave. The fourth Item is attention to details which this movie does well in the form of the African culture and accents to the fantastic soundtrack. Lastly, Forles thinks movies should have a good ending which once again this movie does. It has one of the best final villain speeches in all of the Marvel films and a hero’s heartwarming show of change and hope.
The film even gives a reference to the actual Black Panthers’ Party, a civil rights group who originated in Oakland California in 1966. Their purpose was to patrol the African American neighborhoods and protect them from police brutality. The black panthers also help the poor African American’s giving them food, clothes and educating them. They would carry around guns and watched any police arrest in the neighborhood making sure that the African American being arrested had their rights observed. This was because during that time, when America had just begun to develop its civil rights laws, and the country was in a worse state racially than it is today. Their founder and leader, Huey Newton, who was a man that was willing to die for what he believed in, also compare to a character in the Black Panther movie. Surprisingly it’s not the hero, it’s the villain Erik Killmonger. Killmonger’s ideals compare to the Black Panther Party in many ways. Both of their origins are in Oakland and that they want to better the black community. They also wanted to use revolution as a method in order to achieve their adjective, although the Black Panther Party was more civil with their approach at first. The movie has you leaving the theater with a sense of sadness, especially if you’re an African American because you know his views were right but it his method was wrong. That is also why critics say he the most complexed Marvel villain.
The final verdict of the movie Black Panther it is an 8 out of 10. Although it has a good story and plot the film still felt rushed. The CGI for the final fight scene felt lackluster and not as good as the other fight scenes. The villain Klaue was wasted potential compared to how the character is in the comics. There are also major plot holes but the good outweighs the bad.  This film is worth watching because it’s a fun and happy time. It has its flashy moments for the kids and a deep story for the adults. If the Director Ryan Coogler was to see this review he would appreciate the fact that I noticed the references about the Black Panther Party and the social massages in his film.

Black panther picture


Work cited

Liberation, Imagination, and the Black Panther Party by Kathleen Cleaver and George Katsiaficas , published 2001

Huey P. Newton with the Assistance of J. Herman Blake Revolutionary Suicide by Fredrika Newton, published 2009

Black Panther Movie, Disney and Marvel Films Directed by Ryan Coogle written by Ryan Coolger, Joe Robert Cole 2018

Review “Black Panther” Shakes up the Marvel Universe by Manohla Dargis Feb. 6 2018