I don't have a lot of thoughts on this movie, so here are just some reactions and reflections:
- I liked the sequence near the beginning of the film that took place in a classic '80s mall, mostly because it was filmed at the Landmark Mall in Alexandria, VA. For six months, we lived only a few minutes from that mall, and I used to take my kids there for a fun lunch at the Chik-Fil-A in the food court. It is a dead mall now, with only the food court and the Macys still open. At least, last time I was there, which was about 10 years ago. They decked it all out for the film to look like it undoubtedly did back in the '80s, of course. I was curious to see if they did that, or if they used it to film some sort of apocalyptic wasteland scene, because it's seriously creepy these days, just hall after hall of empty stores.
- I liked Pedro Pascal's performance as villain Maxwell Lord. In fact, I think it was the strongest one in the film. You know I basically never like villains, and usually detest them. But Pascal's character was the only one that elicited any emotional response in me -- I was angry at him for how he treated his son for much of the film, but really bought his emotional confliction, and I was so happy and relieved by how his story wound up.
- I was not happy to see yet another story in which two women cannot have a genuine friendship. Really tired of the whole "female friendships always devolve into rivalry" thing.
- Was it just me, or was Diana (Gal Gadot) on exactly the same emotional journey as she was in the first Wonder Woman movie? (SPOILERS HERE) In the first movie, she finds love with Steve Trevor (Chris Pine) and then has to let herself lose him in order to save the world. In this movie, she finds love with Steve Trevor and then has to let herself lose him in order to save the world. Contrast this with the character growth of even minor characters in the MCU or the X-men franchises, and you'll realize comic book movies don't have to have static characters. (END SPOILERS)
All in all, it was a fun two hours, with a draggy half an hour added to it of extra-long fight scenes that just kept going and going. All of the new DC movies I've seen so far (which is, admittedly, only 3) have suffered from the delusion that more = better, especially when it comes to action scenes.
But Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, and Pedro Pascal were entertaining and enjoyable, so I don't feel like I wasted my money, at least.