There are only two ways a movie could make a notable impact; it could go amazingly well or horribly wrong. I always go into every movie with an open mind and next to zero in expectation and going to see Black Panther the day before its official release was no different. I won't lie and say I had no anticipation for the movie or didn't watch the original teaser, but I didn't let that hold a stake on my experience. So while I write from a free mind, I also want to keep the essence of the movie private. Hence there will be absolutely no spoilers in this article; I'll give you a general purview of the movie and allow you to form your own experience as you watch it.
With that said, there's no denying the cinematic masterpiece that is Wakanda Forever. This intricate storytelling leaves you in tears, laughing and cheering in just over two hours. We're taken through a roller-coaster of emotions throughout the movie, feeling everyone to an extreme through the cast's superb acting. The opening scenes take us through the death of T'challa and, interchangeably, Chadwick Boseman, a moment rife with raw emotion as we remember the legend. Although we're aware of the passing of Chadwick Boseman before production on the movie started, we are treated to enough scenes of the Icon that he's interlaced in every aspect of the movie with memories of him interspersed in every stage.
The opening Marvel intro, which is usually scenes from movies across the Marvel universe featuring various characters, was very notably filled with only scenes of Chadwick Boseman across his different Black Panther appearances as a tribute to his life.
Besides the action and superhero part, the movie's overall plot centres around grief and loss and how we, as humans, process our pain. There's also the central theme of human greed that is prevalent in the story in various ways and aspects, giving us a clear path of storytelling to follow.
Kukulkan, or Namor to his enemies, made his debut appearance as the villain of choice for this movie; we got to experience the underwater world of Talokan, which begs the question of whether we'd get a proper origin movie of the Feather Serpent god. The friendship and battle forged between the Black Panther and Namor will most likely be the premise of a future Black Panther movie.
As for Princess Shuri as the Black Panther, she surely didn't disappoint, from her innovation in the Lab helping resurrect the protector of Wakanda to her cunning battle strategy and determination but also her eventual mercy in not letting vengeance cloud her judgement. One of the biggest shockers was the appearance of a particular vengeance-seeking Wakandan in the throes of the spirit realm, but even with that, she was able to come to terms with who she truly is in the end.
The movie is heavily influenced by MesoAmerican culture besides the obvious African influences. As for the accompanying soundtrack, the music is actually an excellent representation of the movie. The song by Rihanna that was widely criticized was very fitting, and I can see why she was chosen for that specific song.
What makes release day and the cinema experience worth it is the collective laughs, gasps and snarky comments by people in the cinema. Throughout the movie, there were shared moments of grief when remembering Chadwick and those lost, but there was also immense laughter, especially anytime Iron Heart said something. There were these moments between Namor and Shuri where someone in the cinema said, "Ahh is that a proposal? Na so them dey take marry" in Nigerian pidgin English, basically meaning what's all this romantic tension and everyone burst out laughing.
The overall experience and movie were worth the wait, and in true Marvel fashion, they left me with questions with their post-credit scenes, I believe we definitely have another Black Panther movie in the works, and I'm especially interested to see where they take Namor's story from here. Definitely worth the watch as a cinematic experience and as an overall story, be prepared to see a side to Wakanda you haven't seen before both literal and metaphorical.
About the Author: Oluwatobi Omotoso is a writer, content creator, Social Media Manager, and marketing strategist. She's an avid treehugger and lover of all things sci-fi. She has been compared to the Joker in personality tests, and her friends lovingly call her a Megalomaniac.
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