After the last two horrible DC movies (Batman V. Superman, Suicide Squad), DC got it right with Wonder Woman.  This movie is faithful to the comic book character, very exciting, and inspires the sort of awe epic comic book characters deserve.

As a child, Diana grew up on the hidden island Themyscira, populated by warrior Amazons.  Queen Hippolyta (Connie Nielsen) tells Diana (her daughter) tales of the gods, with Zeus defeating Ares and the Amazons destined to destroy Ares, while he tries to corrupt humanity with war.  Hippolyta doesn't want Diana to be trained for battle, but is persuaded that she be trained more than any Amazon ever.  And the adult Diana (Gal Gadot) is the most skilled Amazon.
 Everything changes when pilot Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) crashes on the island, followed closely by German forces.  The Germans attack the Amazons, Steve defends them, and he explains to the isolated Amazons about World War I.  He's on a mission to deliver a book to British intelligence.  Diana believes Area must be behind the War and -- arming herself with magic lasso, shield, and a sword called the Godkiller -- joins Steve Trevor as he returns to Europe.

Diana and Steve have allies in London with perky agent Etta Candy (Lucy Davis) and elderly planner Sir Patrick (David Thewlis).  On the opposite side, General Ludendorff (Danny Huston) hates the peace talks and believes one big German victory will turn the tide of the war.  And scarred scientist Dr. Maru (Elena Anaya) has two major discoveries: a form of mustard gas so deadly it shatters gas masks, and another gas that gives someone superhuman strength.
Wonder Woman works on most levels.  Gal Gadot strikes the right balance between caring and warrior, intelligent woman and innocent exposed to the world for the first time.  Chris Pine is good as the cocky soldier and spy, and the villains have the right amount of menace.  The action sequences are awe-inspiring, even getting me to enjoy slow-motion moments.  The quest takes them from the natural beauty and isolation of Themyscira to the bustling London to the Front (with a multi-ethnic group of supporting characters).  While it was easy to figure out the two "surprises" well in advance, the story moves along well.  And there's some nice humor peppered throughout the movie.  Wonder Woman is a terrific film that's great summer entertainment.

Overall grade: A
Reviewed by James Lynch

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