Black Panther is a 2018 Marvel superhero film based on the comic book character. It’s more than a movie, at this point it is a bona fide movement. It’s the first major blockbuster to celebrate black culture. It was directed by a black guy, written by black people, with a majority black cast and that’s a rare feat because Hollywood loves whitewashing. It’s not the best Marvel movie, but you could argue that it is the most important one.
Ryan Coogler (known for Fruitvale Station and Creed) will join Spike Lee and John Singleton as one of the most successful African-American directors in cinematic history. He deserves it. He turned a relatively obscure comic book character into movie star. Not only is Black Panther about powerful black men, it’s also about powerful black women. That means that black kids have powerful role models to look up to. White people take that for granted. The white guy is almost always the hero of the story. Black people are depicted as sidekicks, villains, gangsters, and comic relief. It’s a breath of fresh air to see something different.
Chadwick Boseman stars as T’Challa aka the Black Panther. Michael B. Jordan plays Killmonger, the sympathetic villain. They are kind of like Martin Luther King, Jr. and Malcolm X. They recognize a major injustice and deal with it in different ways which leads to an inevitable conflict. There you have the most simplistic deconstruction of the plot. Throw in a few awesome action sequences and some philosophical questions about race and responsibility and you have the formula for a great movie. Go see it in theaters. Pay for your ticket. Be a part of it.
Critically Rated at 14/17
Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young