Last updated on February 20th, 2018 at 02:48 am

Black Panther-Best Marvel Movie Yet??

Feb 17, 2018 | Movies

Black Panther is the best Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movie to date.

Black Panther film poster.jpg
By Source, Fair use, Link

 There is so much to say about this movie.  While I’ve been thinking about it and letting it marinate since I saw it late last night on its opening Friday, I still don’t think I can do it justice.
 
Often I try to explain comic book/superhero movies to my husband (who is not remotely versed in such things) before we go, to give him a little background going into it.  There was nothing I could really say that would prepare him, or me,  for the onscreen visualization of these comic books.
 
Black Panther was the first black superhero in mainstream comic books and he was created by two Jewish guys, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.  I tried to explain to my husband that Black Panther was a king of an African country named Wakanda that was the richest and most technologically advanced country in the world.  I had to reiterate what that meant when the world usually sees the entire continent of Africa as a third-world, impoverished country (not even realizing it’s a continent most of the time) and how especially important since a recent characterization of this area as falling into the “sh**hole country” category.  Contrast the wonder of Wakanda with the inner city, urban hell of Oakland, California, USA and you get a fascinating, socially-conscious storyline.
 
Erik Killmonger (SPOILER: he turns out to be Black Panther/T’Challa’s hidden cousin) is a complex villain that brings a lot of important issues to light and many (including myself) could easily root for and understand his point of view and completely believe that he’s acting in a righteous manner.  That’s the hallmark of a good antagonist and a compelling storyline and a rare thing in Marvel movies, as much as I have loved the last 10 years of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies.  The dichotomy between the hero and the villain reminded me of Professor X vs. Magneto in the X-Men franchise.  They represent two views of how to reach the same goal, but their method differ so much that it puts them in extreme conflict.  What an appropriate comic book comparison with Black Panther vs. Killmonger since many often cite that Professor X and his methods represent the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. while Magneto’s more violent methods represent Malcom X during the U.S. Civil Rights movement in the 1960s.
 
Killmonger delivers more than one speech that makes points about black culture that tug at your heart and your head.  Unless you know some history, you’ll miss the full impact of some of Killmonger’s statements.  One that hit particularly hard is when he asked to be buried at sea, like many of his enslaved ancestors who chose to jump off a slaver ship in the Atlantic Ocean and drown rather than live forever in chains.  The reference was boldly there, but was it subtle enough that younger, white movie goers might miss the horror of what he was talking about as he watched that final, beautiful Wakandan sunset?
 
Killmonger’s basic premise is that the African family dispersed around the world living in poverty and danger could have the same quality of life as Wakandans if T’Challa would just share the Vibranium, and technology derived from Vibranium, with them, allowing them to overthrow their oppressors. Without that weaponry, they have no chance and will be consigned to continue the cycle of being subjugated, either overtly or more subtly.  Things would change if they were in charge after a history of enslavement and Vibranium/tech would help make that happen.
 
T’Challa argues that that is not Wakanda’s way. They have managed to survive untainted this long due to their isolationist policies first enacted when they saw that the rest of the world was descending into violent madness.  He argues that he is not king of the world, he is only kind of Wakanda and that means that his people alone are his primary concern and duty.
 
What an interesting commentary on the current political climate couched deeply in superhero rhetoric and fight scenes.  
 
A corner was turned by not just fighting and defeating Killmonger, but actually listening to where his pain was coming from and what he had to say.  Wakanda First policies had to change.  They were too blessed to not help others.  I was heartened by T’Challa’s speech to the United Nations at the end of the movie about building bridges instead of erecting barriers followed by a personal visit to Killmonger’s Oakland neighborhood to use his wealth to give hope to young kids living there and also provide an incredible caring, black, male role model for them to admire, aspire to, and dream of possibilities. So very inspiring to see that I’ll have to admit tears were close for me.
 
On the other hand of truly enjoying Black Panther, I saw the movie with a lot of white teenagers in the audience in “Everybody’s Hometown” and by their reactions I can only hope that some of the message of the movie subconsciously sunk in for eventual reflection.  While I could go into the unfortunate laughter I heard when people were killed (museum scene with “death quip” from villain Klaue (Andy Serkis) meant to demonstrate a villain’s depravity, I find the trend toward provoking the audience to laugh at murder very troubling.  However, after the second and final MCU end credits scene, one teen boy shouted out, “What about the Soul Stone (Inifinty Gem)?! That’s the only reason I came to this stupid movie!”  After just watching this incredible movie and its commentary on our society, that was all you got out of it, kid??  I was depressed.  
 
World, prove me wrong. Hollywood prove me wrong and take the right lessons from the success of this movie.
Black Panther is the best Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movie to date.

Black Panther film poster.jpg
By Source, Fair use, Link

 There is so much to say about this movie.  While I’ve been thinking about it and letting it marinate since I saw it late last night on its opening Friday, I still don’t think I can do it justice.
 
Often I try to explain comic book/superhero movies to my husband (who is not remotely versed in such things) before we go, to give him a little background going into it.  There was nothing I could really say that would prepare him, or me,  for the onscreen visualization of these comic books.
 
Black Panther was the first black superhero in mainstream comic books and he was created by two Jewish guys, Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.  I tried to explain to my husband that Black Panther was a king of an African country named Wakanda that was the richest and most technologically advanced country in the world.  I had to reiterate what that meant when the world usually sees the entire continent of Africa as a third-world, impoverished country (not even realizing it’s a continent most of the time) and how especially important since a recent characterization of this area as falling into the “sh**hole country” category.  Contrast the wonder of Wakanda with the inner city, urban hell of Oakland, California, USA and you get a fascinating, socially-conscious storyline.
 
Erik Killmonger (SPOILER: he turns out to be Black Panther/T’Challa’s hidden cousin) is a complex villain that brings a lot of important issues to light and many (including myself) could easily root for and understand his point of view and completely believe that he’s acting in a righteous manner.  That’s the hallmark of a good antagonist and a compelling storyline and a rare thing in Marvel movies, as much as I have loved the last 10 years of Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) movies.  The dichotomy between the hero and the villain reminded me of Professor X vs. Magneto in the X-Men franchise.  They represent two views of how to reach the same goal, but their method differ so much that it puts them in extreme conflict.  What an appropriate comic book comparison with Black Panther vs. Killmonger since many often cite that Professor X and his methods represent the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. while Magneto’s more violent methods represent Malcom X during the U.S. Civil Rights movement in the 1960s.
 
Killmonger delivers more than one speech that makes points about black culture that tug at your heart and your head.  Unless you know some history, you’ll miss the full impact of some of Killmonger’s statements.  One that hit particularly hard is when he asked to be buried at sea, like many of his enslaved ancestors who chose to jump off a slaver ship in the Atlantic Ocean and drown rather than live forever in chains.  The reference was boldly there, but was it subtle enough that younger, white movie goers might miss the horror of what he was talking about as he watched that final, beautiful Wakandan sunset?
 
Killmonger’s basic premise is that the African family dispersed around the world living in poverty and danger could have the same quality of life as Wakandans if T’Challa would just share the Vibranium, and technology derived from Vibranium, with them, allowing them to overthrow their oppressors. Without that weaponry, they have no chance and will be consigned to continue the cycle of being subjugated, either overtly or more subtly.  Things would change if they were in charge after a history of enslavement and Vibranium/tech would help make that happen.
 
T’Challa argues that that is not Wakanda’s way. They have managed to survive untainted this long due to their isolationist policies first enacted when they saw that the rest of the world was descending into violent madness.  He argues that he is not king of the world, he is only kind of Wakanda and that means that his people alone are his primary concern and duty.
 
What an interesting commentary on the current political climate couched deeply in superhero rhetoric and fight scenes.  
 
A corner was turned by not just fighting and defeating Killmonger, but actually listening to where his pain was coming from and what he had to say.  Wakanda First policies had to change.  They were too blessed to not help others.  I was heartened by T’Challa’s speech to the United Nations at the end of the movie about building bridges instead of erecting barriers followed by a personal visit to Killmonger’s Oakland neighborhood to use his wealth to give hope to young kids living there and also provide an incredible caring, black, male role model for them to admire, aspire to, and dream of possibilities. So very inspiring to see that I’ll have to admit tears were close for me.
 
On the other hand of truly enjoying Black Panther, I saw the movie with a lot of white teenagers in the audience in “Everybody’s Hometown” and by their reactions I can only hope that some of the message of the movie subconsciously sunk in for eventual reflection.  While I could go into the unfortunate laughter I heard when people were killed (museum scene with “death quip” from villain Klaue (Andy Serkis) meant to demonstrate a villain’s depravity, I find the trend toward provoking the audience to laugh at murder very troubling.  However, after the second and final MCU end credits scene, one teen boy shouted out, “What about the Soul Stone (Inifinty Gem)?! That’s the only reason I came to this stupid movie!”  After just watching this incredible movie and its commentary on our society, that was all you got out of it, kid??  I was depressed.  
 
World, prove me wrong. Hollywood prove me wrong and take the right lessons from the success of this movie.
 

PRIMARY PANTHER POINTS not to be forgotten…

Wow! What casting and acting!  Definitely an example of “there are no small parts…” Really, every single actor was good and I recommend a little time at IMDB to go over the cast one more time.
Major Shoutouts also to cinematography (Rachel Morrison,) directing (Ryan Coogler,) and writing (Ryan Coogler & Joe Robert Cole with Stan Lee/Jack Kirby.)
 

 

A few standouts: 

Chadwick Boseman by Gage Skidmore July 2017 (cropped).jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Chadwick Boseman is perfect in the role (even more so than in Captain America: Civil War) and really portrayed the essence of the line from Black Panther’s father, T’Chaka (John Kani,) about how much harder it is for a good man to be a king.

 

 

Danai Gurira 2017.jpg

By Gage Skidmore – https://www.flickr.com/photos/gageskidmore/36110822271/in/album-72157684122777511/, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Danai Gurira played Okoye who turned out to be my absolute favorite character in the whole movie!  Played to perfection and so confident in who she was.  Strong physically and emotionally as she leads the — as General and also holds her own in a moral conflict with her husband, W’Kabi (Daniel Kaluuya.)  LOVED every scene she graced in the movie!

 

 

Letitia Wright by Gage Skidmore.jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Letitia Wright is about to break out big time. This is her year.  Her character, Shuria, is sure to have a big role in any future Black Panther cinematic efforts and dare I say, could be a possible contender for the throne at some point?  Totally enjoyed the brother-sister interaction with T’Challa.  She is definitely the brains behind the operation and could easily segue into that role and what a treat that would be!

 

 

Lupita Nyong'o May 2017.jpg

By Photo by Stephanie Moreno/Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications for Peabody Awards/University of Georgia – https://www.flickr.com/photos/peabodyawards/34150320324/in/album-72157684169511286/, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Lupita Nyong’o turned in another fantastic performance as more-than-the-love-interest Nakia.  She’s already won one Oscar, would it be too much to hope for any Oscars in any category for Black Panther?

 

 

Angela Bassett by Gage Skidmoe.jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Angela Basset as the Queen Mother is just the queen of acting at this point, always counted on to give the most even when the role is smaller.  
 
 
 
 

Forest Whitaker 2014.jpg

By SiebbiForest Whitaker, CC BY 3.0, Link

Forrest Whittaker as Zuri gave me the feels as well.  His character’s guilt was palpable and I felt devastated by his sacrifice right along with T’Challa.

 
 

Michael B. Jordan by Gage Skidmore 3.jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

And finally, Michael B. Jordan as Erik Killmonger was amazing. He’s a favorite with director Ryan Coogler (Black Panther, Creed, Fruitvale Station) and there’s a reason why.  His portrayal was sophisticated when it needed to be and very physical at other times.  He really demonstrated the juxtaposition of the black male experience alongside Chadwick Boseman and defied the concept that we can ever stereotype an entire race.  I would have loved to have seen more of him in the future.

 

 

PRIMARY PANTHER POINTS not to be forgotten…

Wow! What casting and acting!  Definitely an example of “there are no small parts…” Really, every single actor was good and I recommend a little time at IMDB to go over the cast one more time.
Major Shoutouts also to cinematography (Rachel Morrison,) directing (Ryan Coogler,) and writing (Ryan Coogler & Joe Robert Cole with Stan Lee/Jack Kirby.)
 

 

A few standouts: 

Chadwick Boseman by Gage Skidmore July 2017 (cropped).jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Chadwick Boseman is perfect in the role (even more so than in Captain America: Civil War) and really portrayed the essence of the line from Black Panther’s father, T’Chaka (John Kani,) about how much harder it is for a good man to be a king.

 

 

Danai Gurira 2017.jpg

By Gage Skidmore – https://www.flickr.com/photos/gageskidmore/36110822271/in/album-72157684122777511/, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Danai Gurira played Okoye who turned out to be my absolute favorite character in the whole movie!  Played to perfection and so confident in who she was.  Strong physically and emotionally as she leads the — as General and also holds her own in a moral conflict with her husband, W’Kabi (Daniel Kaluuya.)  LOVED every scene she graced in the movie!

 

 

Letitia Wright by Gage Skidmore.jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Letitia Wright is about to break out big time. This is her year.  Her character, Shuria, is sure to have a big role in any future Black Panther cinematic efforts and dare I say, could be a possible contender for the throne at some point?  Totally enjoyed the brother-sister interaction with T’Challa.  She is definitely the brains behind the operation and could easily segue into that role and what a treat that would be!

 

 

Lupita Nyong'o May 2017.jpg

By Photo by Stephanie Moreno/Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communications for Peabody Awards/University of Georgia – https://www.flickr.com/photos/peabodyawards/34150320324/in/album-72157684169511286/, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link

Lupita Nyong’o turned in another fantastic performance as more-than-the-love-interest Nakia.  She’s already won one Oscar, would it be too much to hope for any Oscars in any category for Black Panther?

 

 

Angela Bassett by Gage Skidmoe.jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

Angela Basset as the Queen Mother is just the queen of acting at this point, always counted on to give the most even when the role is smaller.  
 
 
 
 

Forest Whitaker 2014.jpg

By SiebbiForest Whitaker, CC BY 3.0, Link

Forrest Whittaker as Zuri gave me the feels as well.  His character’s guilt was palpable and I felt devastated by his sacrifice right along with T’Challa.

 
 

Michael B. Jordan by Gage Skidmore 3.jpg

By Gage Skidmore, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

And finally, Michael B. Jordan as Erik Killmonger was amazing. He’s a favorite with director Ryan Coogler (Black Panther, Creed, Fruitvale Station) and there’s a reason why.  His portrayal was sophisticated when it needed to be and very physical at other times.  He really demonstrated the juxtaposition of the black male experience alongside Chadwick Boseman and defied the concept that we can ever stereotype an entire race.  I would have loved to have seen more of him in the future.

 

 

Date night with T’Challa going to see Black Panther at the movie theatre opening weekend. 😉

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Dashing Young Geek About Town at Making A Scene Productions, LLC
By day, your Hometown Geek is one of the partners at Making A Scene Productions, LLC and works hard at video production, web design, social media, and all things tech, but by night it's a never-ending battle for truth, justice, and the American Way.

Well-versed in the details of the never-to-be-forgotten and sadly never-to-be-repeated Bronze and Copper Age of Comic Books, but was an innocent bystander during the Chrome Age and accepts no responsibility for it, your Hometown Geek loves all things comic-book related from any era.

Although biased toward Apple products, your Hometown Geek doesn't feel like a Hipster. Fascinated by all the tech at hand in the world today and anxious to try out all different forms of new and old media, the Geek still has an incredible fondness for the old movies of the 1930s and 1940s and loves to fall asleep to TCM - Turner Classic Movies.

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