A couple of weeks ago, the Wonder Woman movie hit the theaters. The movie opened to good reviews and, having seen it opening day, I can attest that it’s quite good. It’s well-directed. Gal Gadot is very good and she has a great chemistry with Chris Pine. The characters are likable, it has a much-needed sprinkling of humor and the action scenes are thrilling. The third act does descend into the CGI destruction that seems to be a requirement these days. But it does it well with the hinge of the plot being not whether Diana can do something but whether she should. I’d rank it in the upper tier of superhero movies, a solid 8/10.
As far as feminism goes, I would compare it to Fury Road, another excellent movie. If you want some feminism in your movie, it’s there. But it doesn’t have to be. You can just watch it as an entertaining action flick without any problem.
Of course, it’s been a focal point of a lot of SJW discussion, given that it’s the first female-led superhero movie in a long time (and the first really good one) and was directed by a woman. I don’t mind this chatter. It’s always good to have superheroes you can identify with and my own little girl loved it. But what’s been funny is that the people who are obsessed with the sort of thing have been desperately scrounging around for a sexist take on the movie. And from what I can tell, they haven’t really found any. Reviews have made oblique vague references to “men not getting it” even though every man I know likes the movie and the worst take I’ve heard is that the movie was just OK. But I have not found the kidn of “OMG! FEMINISM!” takes everyone wants to find. The dumbest Right Wing take was a Fox News segment complaining that Wonder Woman wasn’t American enough. Oh, and there was some minor and overblown kerfuffle over Alamo Drafthouse having a woman-only screening.
What I have found, on the other hand, is idiot leftist takes. And not in some obscure corner of the internet, but in mainstream liberal publications. So here’s Slate, missing the point as always, claiming the movie isn’t feminist enough. Here’s Ms. Magazine, complaining that the movie isn’t PC enough (and falsely claiming it wouldn’t pass the Bechdel test after the first 15 minutes, because Etta Candy was apparently removed from their cut). You can even expand that view to dumb takes assuming boys don’t like the movie. Or dumb takes from people who should know better accusing the movie of racism based on early publicity stills.
But that’s peanuts. The real idiot take on this is about Gal Gadot herself. Gadot is a former IDF soldier, an Israeli citizen and a patriot. This does not sit well with many on the Left who see Israel as the quintessence of evil. The movie has been banned in a couple of Arab countries and celebrities praising the movie have been criticized. Criticism has particularly focused on this facebook post where Gadot posted a picture of herself and her daughter celebrating the Sabbath and praised the IDF for defending Israel against Hamas. This was during the Gaza War, which started when Hamas kidnapped and murdered three Israeli teenagers. Israel drew a lot of criticism for a bombing campaign that killed thousands.
Look, I’ve criticized Israel for their settlements in the West Bank and for some of their actions. But there’s little doubt in my mind that between Israel and Hamas, Israel are the good guys. Muslims can practice their religion in Israel. They have holy sites all over some of Judaism’s most sacred areas and those sites are respected. Hamas, by contrast, is dedicated to destroying Israel and, presumably, all six million Jews therein. This is not even close. And while one could criticize Israel’s actions in the Gaza War, expecting Gal Gadot — an Israeli and a veteran — to do so is insane.
And frankly, this is not a can of worms the SJWs want opened. Because if we start judging celebrities by their politics, it’s the liberal celebrities who will suffer the most. We’ve seen Hollywood celebrities voice support for brutal dictatorships in Iran, Cuba and Venezuela. They spent decades worshipping horrific Communist dictators like Stalin, Khrushchev and Mao. They’ve devoted enormous effort to trying to free murderers like Mumia Abu-Jamal. Right now, they’re up in Minnesota, wondering if female genital mutilation should be outlawed.
So spare me the gasps of horror over Gadot supporting her country when they were in the middle of a damned war.