This article contains spoilers for the movie Black Panther.
Last night I went to see Black Panther. It was pretty good – not “The Greatest Superhero Movie of All Time™️” like everyone claimed it would be, but Marvel definitely got it right, and it’s got an incredible soundtrack to boot.
The movie opens in Oakland in 1992, but not really. First we get an expositional narration over an animated sequence of the history of Wakanda, the secretive, fictional, technologically advanced African nation. Then we get to Oakland and are treated to even more exposition. The importance of the scene is downplayed however, to the benefit of the rest of the movie. The biggest takeaway from the first 10 minutes is that all Wakandans have a blue, glowy tattoo on the inside of their lower lip and that vibranium is super important.
Black Panther establishes its characters early and very well. The sister of newly coronated King T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) almost steals the entire show. Played by Letitia Wright, Shuri is the Q to T’Challa’s James Bond. Some of the best scenes in the movie are how the brother and sister interact. Other standout characters include the performance by Michael B. Jordan, who plays the main villain with the coolest name ever, Erik Killmonger. Andy Serkis is great as always, reprising his role as Ulysses Klaue.
I do have to agree with the ONLY bad review on Rotten Tomatoes that there was not enough action in Black Panther. When the audience finally gets action, it is either the same footage already revealed from Marvel’s plentiful trailers or so marred by CGI as to cause motion sickness. The fight scenes were almost lazy, and the final battle between T’Challa and Erik was nothing special. On top of that, none of the main characters died despite the movie setting up two potential deaths. The deaths of either (or both) Shuri and Everett Ross (played by Martin Freeman) had the potential to fuel an already emotional plot, but I am somewhat relieved that Marvel chose to not kill off their characters as we may get to see them again in future movies.
Now to the cultural implications of this movie. If you have been on twitter at all in the last month, you will know that this movie is the best movie of all time. Which is why people harpooned the only bad review. They had already decided that it couldn’t be bad, that the “first black superhero movie” was the thing we needed most right now. Too bad they forgot about Hancock.
While social justice warriors and cultural Marxists alike will praise this movie, they shouldn’t. If anything, Black Panther is a conservative movie. Wakandan culture is based heavily around family, country, honor, and personal responsibility – cornerstones of conservative ideology. The villain is the one who preaches reparations and schemes of world domination. The villain is also the one who harbors a grudge against “colonists,” a half-slur to describe white people. T’Challa himself says it best towards the end of the movie, that we all share this earth together, we all came from the same place. The fact that the movie had a majority black cast means little when Black Panther can stand on it own four legs as a good movie.
As for a ranking, it is definitely towards the top of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It certainly blows Ant Man and Doctor Strange out of the water, but it’s no Thor 3 or Captain America: Winter Soldier. The real question comes down to cold hard cash. Should you pay full price to see it?
I certainly would.
The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.