Black Panther review round-up: This Marvel film could be the most political MCU movie yet
"Incredible" and "kinetic" are just a few of the loving words that people are using to describe and praise Marvel's Black Panther.
The film from director Ryan Coogler had its first screenings on Monday night and a premiere in Los Angeles. Official reviews won't go out until 6 February, but audiences at the select screenings were able to share non-spoiler reactions on social media.
Los Angeles Times writer Jen Yamato wrote on Twitter that it is the first Marvel movie about something real. "Black Panther is incredible, kinetic, purposeful," Yamato wrote. "A superhero movie about why representation & identity matters, and how tragic it is when those things are denied to people."
The film features a largely black cast including Chadwick Boseman, Michael B Jordan and Lupita Nyong'o. It follows T'Challa (Boseman) after the death of his father, the king of the fictional African nation of Wakanda, and his ascension to the throne.
"I never wanted this movie to end, and as soon as it did I wanted to go back," tweeted Mashable critic Angie Han. "Solid action, smart story, tons of personality."
Han and Vulture editor Kyle Buchanan both singled out Letitia Wright for her character Shuri, T'Challa's inventor sister. Many spoke highly of Jordan's Erik Killmonger, a villain, and Danai Gurira's warrior character Okoye too.
Slash Film editor Peter Sciretta called it "Marvel's most political film to date" and said it "looks, feels and sounds unlike any Marvel film to date. A visual feast. Wakanda is amazingly realized, the antagonist actually has an arc with emotional motivations."
Others were more tempered like writer Dave Schilling who says, "Black Panther is not the best Marvel movie. It's not the worst Marvel movie. It's an entertaining movie." IndieWire critic David Ehrlich wrote that it's, "Like a Marvel movie but better. The action is predictably awful, but this is the first MCU film that has an actual sense of identity & history & musicality."
Here's the first wave of reviews as the social media embargo for the movie lifted.
BLACK PANTHER is incredible, kinetic, purposeful. A superhero movie about why representation & identity matters, and how tragic it is when those things are denied to people. The 1st MCU movie about something real; Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger had me weeping and he’s the VILLAIN
— jen yamato (@jenyamato) January 30, 2018
#BlackPanther: I never wanted this movie to end, and as soon as it did I wanted to go back. Solid action, smart story, tons of personality. Shuri is my new fave, Nakia is everything, Killmonger is incredible, T'Challa deserves to rule the MCU. Coogler has done it again. 💜🖤💙 pic.twitter.com/t9gG3DLuCL — Angie J. Han (@ajhan) January 30, 2018
The MVP of #BlackPanther is Letitia Wright's hilarious, ebullient Shuri. I want a Shuri supercut, I want a Shuri spinoff, I want a capsule collection of Shuri sportswear at Opening Ceremony, and I want these things now!
— Kyle Buchanan (@kylebuchanan) January 30, 2018
There are moments where Black Panther touches on some heavy material and I kept wanting it to elaborate. Probably my fault for wanting a Marvel movie to fully address racism and mass incarceration! — Dave Schilling (@dave_schilling) January 30, 2018
#BlackPanther is exceptional - the James Bond of the MCU. You've seen nothing like this in a superhero movie - it's bold, beautiful & intense, but there's a depth & spiritualness that is unlike anything Marvel has ever done. It's 100% African & it is dope af. pic.twitter.com/Z77IjnIjf2
— ErikDavis (@ErikDavis) January 30, 2018
Ladies and gentlemen we have an AMAZING villain. #BlackPanther was so good I can’t breathe. AND DANAI GURIRA HOLY F@$&?!?!? I LOVE this movie. pic.twitter.com/eMOZTdIMQv — Ash Crossan (@AshCrossan) January 30, 2018
— Roth Cornet (@RothCornet) January 30, 2018
Black Panther looks, feels and sounds unlike any Marvel film to date. A visual feast. Wakanda is amazingly realized, the antagonist actually has an arc with emotional motivations. Marvels most political movie. So good. #BlackPanther
— Peter Sciretta (@slashfilm) January 30, 2018
You guys aren’t ready for #BlackPanther. It may be the strongest film in the MCU since The Winter Soldier. Ryan Coogler has made something so firmly fresh and new within the confines of the Marvel universe. Boseman and Jordan are just phenomenal, and I need more Wakanda now. pic.twitter.com/Xj8gJGdMUU — Patrick "PJ" Campbell (@pj_campbell) January 30, 2018
BLACK PANTHER is like a Marvel movie, but better. the action is predictably awful, but this is the first MCU film that has an actual sense of identity & history & musicality. Wakanda is alive. whole cast is great but the women (and the war rhinos) steal the show — Danai Gurira!
— david ehrlich (@davidehrlich) January 30, 2018
Black Panther hits theatres worldwide on 16 February.
Updated Date: Jan 30, 2018 15:19 PM