Last night I saw Black Panther, starring Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan.
T'Challa (Boseman) is Wakanda's new King. He's peace-keeping, well-liked, intelligent and careful to guard the African nation's advanced technology (Vibranium, a super-metal that they develop into clothing, spacecrafts, etc.), so when he's challenged by a long-lost Californian cousin (Jordan) for the crown, things get tense.
It seems like a simple premise ... and it is, but the execution and the underlying meaning goes so much deeper.
Here we are in 2018, still talking about racism, still fighting police brutality toward people of color, still scratching our heads that oppression in any form can still exist. But it does, and the film is quick to point that out. Even the "bad guy" cousin has a reason for the anger that drives him, and for that we have a tough time completely hating him.
What I loved about this movie wasn't only the clear messages of social justice, but the fact it had a little bit of everything: Comedy? Check. Love story? Check. Family drama? Check. Cool sci-fi trickery? Check. Gorgeous cinematography? Check.
I make no secret of the fact I'm not a fan of most superhero flicks, but this is an exception. I was engaged from the moment I sat down to the moment the lights came up. I cared about the characters (thank you for the tears, Sterling K. Brown) immediately and grew tense when my favorites faced danger.
It was well-written, well-directed, well-acted and well-intentioned.
If you haven't seen it, do. I'll be going back, for sure.