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'Wonder Woman' Blu-ray Review: An iconic DC Comics hero finally gets her due

September 23, 2017Ben Mk





FEATURE: 
No one ever said being a superhero was easy. But being a female superhero, especially one at the forefront of a high-profile summer blockbuster? Well, that's difficulty on a whole other level. That said, director Patty Jenkins and star Gal Gadot certainly make it look effortless, as Wonder Woman surpasses the DC Extended Universe films that have come before it.


An origin story, Wonder Woman never refers to its title character (Gadot) by her superhero moniker. Instead, we know her only as Diana, daughter of Hyppolyta (Connie Neilsen), the queen of an all-female race of Amazon warriors created by Zeus himself. For centuries, the Amazons have resided on Themyscira, a paradise island hidden from the outside world by a shroud of fog. Then one day, American pilot Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) crashes in the surrounding waters, inadvertently — and literally — bringing dozens of German troops to the island's shores.

Needless to say, the result rests largely on Gadot's statuesque shoulders; and, thankfully, she delivers in spectacular fashion, imbuing her character with an awe-inspiring combination of ferocity and spirit. Make no mistake, Gadot's performance isn't perfect, but her portrayal of Diana as someone who's pure of heart and willing to sacrifice for the greater good is exactly what the DCEU needs. More importantly, she's utterly believable in the role, wholeheartedly selling the notion of a no-nonsense crusader who happens to possess super strength, agility and fantastical powers.

Of course, the million-dollar question on many moviegoers' minds will be whether the movie itself does justice to the character, her legacy as a feminist icon, and her over three-quarters-of-a-century of comic book lore. Long story short, the answer is a resounding yes on all three points. As Wonder Woman, Gadot kicks butt and sets herself up as a role model to be emulated by young women everywhere, while the film structured around her keeps audiences mesmerized with its entertaining hybrid of fish-out-of-water story and action-packed hero's journey.

AUDIO & VISUALS: 
Wonder Woman hits Blu-ray with a fantastic-looking 1080p transfer, backed by a powerful Dolby Atmos sound mix to boot. Suffice to say, fans won't be disappointed with the film's leap from the big screen to their television screens, as the picture quality here is top-notch — from the period costume and production design of 1910s London and Germany, to the armor worn by Diana and her fellow Amazon warriors, to the green grass of Themyscira and the clear blue waters surrounding it — while surround channels get a true workout, thanks to the sounds of arrows and swords striking their targets, heavy artillery fire and plenty of explosions.


EXTRAS: 
Warner's two-disc Blu-ray combo pack includes an UltraViolet digital copy, a DVD and the following Blu-ray extras:

  • Epilogue: Etta’s Mission (2:41) - Etta Candy (Lucy Davis) brings Steve and Diana’s team back together again for another mission.
  • Crafting the Wonder (16:26) - A look at not only the challenges of, but also the attention to detail paid, in bringing Wonder Woman to the big screen, from the scope and tone of the story, to the visual style of the film, to the production and costume design, to shooting on location in the UK and Italy.
  • A Director’s Vision (24:41) - Director Patty Jenkins discusses her approach to bringing Wonder Woman to the big screen in these five featurettes ("Themyscira: The Hidden Island," "Beach Battle," "A Photograph Through Time," "Diana in the Modern World" and "Wonder Woman at War").
  • Warriors of Wonder Woman (9:53) - A look at the physical and martial arts training involved in assembling an army of Amazon warriors.
  • The Trinity (16:05) - A look at where Wonder Woman fits into the DC Comics Trinity and what sets her apart from its other members, Superman and Batman.
  • The Wonder Behind the Camera (15:34) - A look at how Patty Jenkins and the female members of the cast and crew behind Wonder Woman have inspired a new generation of female filmmakers.
  • Finding the Wonder Woman Within (23:08) - Rhonda Cowan, Dee Dee Myers, Zoe Bell, Lynda Obst and a variety of female producers, executives, artists, actors, public figures and more share what Wonder Woman means to them.
  • Extended Scenes (9:04) - Five scenes ("Boat Conversation," "Selfridges Shopping," "Parliament Steps," "Morning at the Train Station" and "Charlie Never Sleeps").
  • Alternate Scene: Walk to No Man’s Land (1:04) - A new scene not included in the final cut of the film.
  • Blooper Reel (5:37) - Goofs and flubs from the set.


Wonder Woman is available from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment as of September 19, 2017. The Blu-ray features English Dolby Atmos, French, Spanish and Portuguese Dolby Digital 5.1, and English Dolby Digital 5.1 Descriptive Audio tracks. The film is presented with English SDH, French, Spanish and Portuguese subtitles. The total runtime is 2 hrs. 21 min.






* Reviewer's note: Portions of this Blu-ray review were adapted from my original review of the theatrical release, published on June 1st, 2017.



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