Black Panther
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Black Panther

Popular films are frequently revisited with sequels, prequels that can combine for a trilogy. If the success remains profitable for a sufficient amount of time the cinematic Holy Grail is attempted, the franchise. Over the years there have been many movies capable of keeping a storyline and favorite characters engaged for several years. There is little doubt that the title of the most successful franchise in film history can belong to only a single contender, the Marvel Cinematic Universe, better known to millions of fans and critics as simply the MCU. This year the franchise has reached its tenth anniversary and nineteen films, plus several broadcast and streaming television shows, with profits, rapidly approaching billions of dollars. The eighteenth film in this series not only reset the high bar for box office openings but created a social revolution bringing the MCU into a new era of multiculturalism. There have been some complaints that the MCU heroic lineup lacks ethnic diversity. This claim is unfounded as demonstrated by movies including the Blade Trilogy and more releasing Luke Cage on Netflix. ‘The Black Panther’ among the amazing aspects of this movie is the way that the story includes racially crucial socio-political issues but although dutifully addressed they never eclipse the blockbuster level entertainment. to pigeon-hole the film with such genre assignments as a ‘Black Movie’ is an injustice to the breadth of its scope. Just because the primary cast is black with a few Caucasians sprinkled in, what remains sufficiently important is it is one of the best movies among the MCU, in fact for the year.

The scenario and several of the primary characters of this story were introduced in the MCU film, ‘Captain America: Civil War.’ The basic theme established a division that breaks the unity of the Avengers, which he created a schism created, by an accorded created by the United Nations that held superheroes responsible for collateral damage requiring registration of their actual identities. During a meeting of the United Nations a terrorist attack whose victims included King T'Chaka (John Kani), of the small African nation of Wakanda. As far as the world is concerned Wakanda is a third world country, of no global significance. It is the most technologically advanced country on the global. Their technology is a century beyond the best the rest of the world can achieve. Only Tony Stark come close to what is commonplace in the small nation. The reason for their advanced covert technology is a deposit of metal, Vibrainium. Billions of tons if the precious metal left beneath the nation. The metal has the unique properties of including the ability to absorb all vibrations in the vicinity as well as kinetic energy directed at it. The energy absorbed is stored within the bonds between the molecules that make up the substance. Besides their technology, it is the basis of the outfit ore by the king in his ancestral mantle of the Black Panther. A rare plant abuses the current Black Panther with near superhuman, reflexes, agility, strength, and resilience.

The transfer of power to the young king was not a smooth change to the new guard, T'Challa (Chadwick Boseman), had been training to assume the responsibility since he was a young bot at his father’s side. No training could have prepared the nascent monarch for the circumstances surrounding his ascent to the throne. His father was murdered in a highly publicized act of terrorism that pulled the Avengers into the fray. Compounding the confusion and violence came from an unexpected source, Ulysses Klaue (Andy Serkis), an opportunistic criminal who came in the passion of a high-tech weapon. Having lost one arm, he replaced it with a weapon capable of projecting an exceptionally powerful beam of energy, stolen from a Wakanda research facility. Also stolen was a hundred ton of the precious Vibrainium. King T'Chaka announced that this amount was the entirety of their national reserve when it was akin to a toothpick from a giant redwood. Another heist critical to establishing the dramatic motivation was the thief of an ancient war ax taken from an African country. Unknown to most the ax head was pure, solid Vibrainium. Perpetrating the crime was Erik Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan). It turns out that he is the cousin of T'Challa, orphaned when T'Challa killed his brother to save the life of his best friend, Zuri. The younger version was played by Denzel Whitaker, replaced by Forest Whitaker, no relation, in the present day. As usual, the coverup is worse than the offense.

Killmonger received his pseudonym as a former Navy SEAL, who accumulated hundreds of kills as a mercenary. Taking advantage of a provision in a royal ceremony to defeat the true king and cheat his way to the throne. His immediate goal is to instigate a global race war using Wakanda’s advanced weapons. Some of the plot threads are, admittedly taken from well-worn themes. The true king, believed dead, nursed back to help by a dissonant faction only to fight to regain the throne. One of the main difference between the MCU over their perennial rival, the DCEUJ, is the sense of humanity woven into the fabric of their character development. DC tends to draw their villains and heroes with strict good versus evil dichotomy. In stark contrast, Marvel embraces a myriad of shades of grey. Killmonger’s backstory painted a picture of a child, born without any advantages facing emotional and physical abuse. The troubled childhood is not offered by the narrative as an excuse burh instead a means to help the viewers understand what drives the character. In most respects, Killmonger is a Shakespearian character, multifaceted, layered and exceptionally fascinating. Aside from the incredibly imaginative special effects, this story could be a Shakespearian historical drama. Both companies have the best special effects teams possible, bringing to life super-powered characters from the pages of our favorite comic books and graphic novels. The substantial difference is in the intrinsic depth of the narration. Marvel has built their universe with precision and craftsmanship over a decade and individual and team-oriented films. Black Panther it the final piece of a grand story culminating in the conclusion of their Phase Three., DC has never taken such a detailed, inclusive and consistent epic tale.

Undeniably the breakout character and newcomer to the MCU is T'Challa’s nineteen-year-old sister, Shuri (Letitia Wright). Despite her tender years, she has a Ph.D. from MIT, an M.D. and a level of genius approaching that of Tony Stark and Reed Richards. Her spacious laboratory beneath the palace is the site where amazing technologies are created and utilized as the foundation for her inventions. She has a touch of a rebellious nature although still respects the ancient traditions. She installed upgrades to the traditional Blank Panther suit making it a technological wonder. Merging Vibrainium with nanotechnology allows T'Challa to summon the suit from his necklace. Stark would adopt some of Shuri’s innovation into the latest incarnation of his Iron Man armor. This is yet another example of the exquisite planning and execution that has been the foundation of the MCU’s unparallel success. Introducing the Black Panther in ‘Civil War; served a two-fold purpose. First, it efficiently introduced an important new character to the ongoing story, seamlessly incorporating him into the requisite relationships and motivations. Second, that appearance generated an enormous amount of interest for the solo movie. Not only did this movie substantially expand the multicultural presence of the MCU, it a means to introduce advanced technology that developed o=f Tony Stark independently. From the perspective of narrative, Tony, and his Father, Howard, were the only source of the high-tech wonders deployed by the Avengers and S.H.I.E.L.D., reducing the Starks were to a high-tech Deus ex machina. All of this is the ideal prelude to the long-awaited showdown with Thanos in the ‘Infinity War.’ One final note requires addressing. The theatrical edition fully employed the use of all illusion of depth fully incorporated the thence as an integral aspect of relating the narrative to the viewers. Under the stylistic direction of a lesser filmmaker, those effects become flashy punctuation, frequently distracting from the pacing of the story. Much can be gained by watching it in 3D, yet the region-A Blu-ray release was not offeredObtaining the full measure of entertainment, requires to obtain a copy from a vendor such as Amazon. Even then, you will usually need a region-free player to view the disc. The cost of a multi-region player capable of handling 3D is under $200. This is compatible with. h most single region players and usually includes access to streaming services including Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, and Vudu. The latter supports streaming 3D in 1080p and Dolby 7.1 audio.

Posted 05/15/2018

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