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  • Writer's pictureMax Markowitz

Black Panther

“Relevant and Overdue”

Black Panther is what every superhero movie should aspire to be. Being a hero is not about having powers, it’s about making the world a better place. Black Panther reflects this statement with all the qualities of a great film: Passion, boldness and lots of hard-working talent. I’m really not a fan of superhero films, particularly Marvel ones, but I loved this one. Not since The Dark Knight have, I seen a superhero film that had such relevance and believability. Chadwick Boseman falls like the rain and lands perfectly into his starring role as T’Challa or Black Panther, heir to the hidden but highly advanced kingdom of Wakanda. His task of transitioning the people of Wakanda into a new future is disrupted by Michael B. Jordan’s N’Jadaka, T’Challa’s cousin who has his own views on how Wakanda should be ruled and T’Challa is not anywhere in them.

This royal rivalry serves as the films central conflict, yet it doesn't give off that mainstream vibe Marvel films usually give. It gives off a Ten Commandments vibe as the transition into a new future is never an easy one and rivalry always takes advantage of that. Black Panther uses that sort of subject matter tragically and beautifully. The performances of Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan really verify this as what they want couldn't be further apart from each other. The wellbeing of Wakanda is T’Challa’s top priority while complete power is N’Jadaka’s.

The hard work Lupita Nyong’o put into her role as Nakia literally ran through her veins, out of her body and into the sky. One can tell she really learned Hausa, Judo and Silat as she does all of this with the grit of a warrior and the determination of a cobra. Nakia was raised as a warrior and begins her role in the film fighting for enslaved women in Nigeria. She knows T’Challa is destined to be a truly great king and she wants so badly for him to believe in himself and the importance of doing that truly is something the film teaches. All the other performances had heart pounding energy and beautiful quality, but my first instinct says that the trio of Boseman, Jordan and Nyong’o are the performers who kept every nail in this film from falling out of its beautifully crafted wall. I’m actually listening to the music in the film as I write this review. The score is that essential to the film.

The cinematography, costume designs and visual effects are so beautiful that watching them is like watching yourself arrive at a tropical island after living through cold winters your whole life. Black Panther has gotten a lot of praise for its cultural importance. What I find applaudable about that aspect of the film is that no one had to do anything to make a film like Black Panther other than just do it.

Black Panther is a beautiful film about diversity, love of where you come from, love in general and the importance of believing in yourself. Superhero films have the ability to make films like this all the time so why are they not making them? Why has it taken so long for a film so important and trail blazing as Black Panther to come out? Regardless of the reason, it has come out and I highly look forward to the beautiful future the film is trying to bring.

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