Review: Black Panther

Black Panther

Title: Black Panther
Year: 2018
Director: Ryan Coogler
Writers: Ryan Coogler,  Joe Robert Cole
Stars: Chadwick Boseman,  Michael B. Jordan,  Lupita Nyong’o, Forrest Whitaker, Martin Freeman, Winston Duke

Black Panther was opened with introduction about Wakanda, a country and nation established by five African tribes, led by the very first “Black Panther”, a warrior who got superhuman power from “heart-shaped herb”. The Wakandans got held of the strongest metal in the world, vibranium, and used it to develop advanced technology while isolating themselves from the world by posing as a Third World country.

In the present day, after King T’Chaka passed away, his son T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) returns to Wakanda to assume the throne. At the ceremony, the Jabari Tribe’s leader M’Baku (Winston Duke) challenges T’Challa for the crown in ritual combat. T’Challa defeats M’Baku and convinces him to give up and take care of his tribe rather than die during the ritual. After T’Challa officially crowned as King of Wakanda, T’Challa’s friend, W’Kabi (Daniel Kaluuya), requested him to find and bring to Wakanda Klaue, a robber who managed to get into Wakanda years ago and stole some vibranium for trading. T’Challa, Okoye (the leader of the Dora Milaje regiment, played by Danai Gurira) and Nakia (T’Challa’s ex-lover, played by Lupita Nyong’o) eventually go to Busan, following information that Klaue will sell a stolen Wakandan artifact to his buyer there. To his surprise, T’Challa meets CIA agent Everett Ross (Martin Freeman) who apparently acts as the buyer for Klaue. A firefight takes place and Klaue is arrested under CIA watch, however he is rescued by his team, led by Erik Stevens (Michael B. Jordan), a former US black operation soldier. During the chaos, Ross is severely injured when protecting Nakia. Feeling responsible, T’Challa takes Ross back to Wakanda where their technology can save him.

While Ross is being healed, T’Challa interrogates Zuri (Forest Whitaker), a Wakandan elder and “heart-shaped herb” caretaker, about N’Jobu, his uncle. He saw Erik wearing a ring that only a Wakandan has and wondering if somehow he is related to N’Jobu. Zuri explains that in the past, N’Jobu planned to share Wakanda’s technology with people of African descent around the world to help them defeat the dictators. While T’Chaka arrested N’Jobu and about to take him back to Wakanda, N’Jobu attacked Zuri, forcing T’Chaka to kill him. T’Chaka ordered Zuri to lie that N’Jobu had disappeared and left behind N’Jobu’s American son, Erik, in order to maintain the lie. Erik, filled with hatred, plans to have his revenge by taking over King of Wakanda’s throne and continue N’Jobu’s vision. It’s now up to T’Challa to prevent other world wars happen with vibranium being distributed freely to many countries.

I like this movie. I think it gives a different vibe of Marvel’s superhero story. The background narrative of African nation and culture provides different touch, and I really enjoy it. However, I could not help myself to think a little bit further about it. I had an impression that the reaction from other audiences in the theatre was not as “hyped” as mine for some scenes that I found quite hilarious. I could be wrong of course, since I did not pay attention to my surrounding all the time, but it made me think. Do people really think and react differently about this movie because it tells us story about African people? Do people unconsciously compare it with other superhero movies which usually have white male or female protagonists? Or was it only me, who might be a racist without realizing it? In the end, this movie somehow becomes a soft reminder to me to revisit again my actions so far: have I been acting fair to everyone around me? Have I been judgmental to people without consciously aware about it? It is refreshing to know that a movie can bring such an impact to us and makes us think to be a better person moving forward.

Other than that “aha” moment, I found the story is a bit unclear for me, especially story about Erik. I find it difficult to believe that by only listening to some stories told by his father when he was a kid, Erik could know so much about Wakanda, i.e. its isolated location (I mean, they have invisible barrier around the country and he easily enters it without getting lost. Really?), its culture, its vibranium treasure and so much more. I mean, he was a teenager when N’Jobu was murdered, and prior to that, N’Jobu was busy with his espionage and rebellion works. I am not sure he had enough time to explain everything about Wakanda in details to Erik, or at least it was not shown sufficiently in the movie. This fact makes the movie’s climax becoming anti-climax since the emotion is not fully captured there. At least I can’t feel it (sorry Erik!).

Overall, I am quite satisfied with this movie. I am giving 4 out of 5 stars for my rating. Another Marvel’s superhero movie which is enjoyable to watch.


Weekly Photo Challenge: “Scale”

Hey ho! It’s me again 🙂

Another post for weekly photo challenge, this time for the theme of “Scale”! I decided to use picture of Vernazza, Cinque Terre, Italy, which was taken from a hill next to the port. From above, we can see colorful buildings and boats which look small and cute (it might not be the right word, but anyway). It’s amazing how some things could be perceived differently, depending from which angle you are looking at it. Hope you like this picture as much as I do!


Weekly Photo Challenge: “Rounded”

Chasing up another theme of weekly photo challenge from last month. This time with the theme of “Rounded”. I hope somehow I still meet the theme…feel like I am cheating here *gasp*

Anyway, here you go.

london eye



Weekly Photo Challenge: Satisfaction

I am a relatively simple person with a common interest on book and traveling. Buying books has been a guilty pleasure for me because I feel some kind of satisfaction everytime I do it, and the pleasure even doubled once I finish reading the books. It does not always happen linearly since I have less time to read lately due to my work and other things, but for sure it will be part of my life which will always bring small happiness in my heart ☺️

Traveling is just amazing. I enjoyed the experience and new knowledge which I got when I visited new places and met new people. After hiatus for a while, I think it’s about time for me to pack my bag and go wandering again, this time with my significant other 😄


Review: Dunkirk

Year: 2017
Director: Christopher Nolan
Writer: Christopher Nolan
Stars: Fionn Whitehead, Damien Bonnard, Aneurin Barnard, Tom Hardy

This movie refers to Battle of Dunkirk, a military operation that took place in Dunkirk (Dunkerque), France, during the Second World War. The battle was fought between the Allies and Nazi Germany. As part of the Battle of France on the Western Front, the Battle of Dunkirk was the defence and evacuation of British and Allied forces in Europe from 26 May to 4 June 1940 (wikipedia).

I have been a fan of Christopher Nolan’s work ever since The Dark Knight trilogy and Inception, hence I was expecting a lot from Dunkirk. Well, I was not disappointed at all! In fact, I really really like this movie! It is brilliant in all aspects: the storyline, the cast, the cinematography, the music; each piece fits beautifully and creates a beautiful mosaics for audiences.

The movie started with a story of Tommy (Fionn Whitehead), a young British soldier who tried to leave Dunkirk. Trapped in the island with other 400,000 devastated soldiers who also wanted to go home, Tommy had to find a way to ensure he would not be part of those unlucky troops who might be left behind. Trying his luck, he quickly picked up a stretcher to bring a wounded soldier to medical boat, hoping he could sail away with the medical team. Unfortunately it didn’t work and forced Tommy to find another way to save himself. While Tommy was struggling in the land, in the skies above, Spitfire pilots Farrier (Tom Hardy) and Collins (Jack Lowden) took off to Dunkirk to protect people in the island by shooting down enemy planes. Limited fuel and wave of enemy planes did not make the job easy for both of them. In the sea, Mr. Dawson (Mike Rylance) together with his son, Pete and his friend George, headed off to Dunkirk in his boat to save as many British soldiers they could get. They encountered a shell-shocked soldier on a wrecked ship and took him aboard. When the soldier discovered that Dawson was sailing for Dunkirk, he tried to take control of the boat and accidentally pushed George down to the lower deck. The latter got severe blow to the head and lost his sight. All three events seemed not related at all, until the truth appeared in the middle of the movie.  

It was brilliant. The fact that the movie tells a story of three different events in parallel actually blows my mind. In the beginning I thought everything happens in a sequence manner, which means one event after another. However in the middle of the movie, I (and I believe everyone else) noticed the oddity of the flow when similar event happens again, but this time from different person’s point of view. That’s when I started questioning if those events were actually happened in different timeline and somehow linked to each other. This so much reminds me to Inception in which Nolan was playing with the concept of dream and reality, which linked back again to time. Seems the concept of “playing with time” is one of Nolan’s favorite, which in a way can be classifed as his signature on his movies. 

I love the cinematography and the sound of this movie. Everything was just perfect, not less and not too much. Sometimes in a war movie, I feel like the sound was dominating a bit too much (which I expect) to give more impact to the audiences. Watching Dunkirk, I  still feel the same impact with less attack to my eardrums. The casts are great, each one of them played a very convincing role which pushed the story moving forward. Fionn Whitehead was basically Tommy in my eyes: a young soldier who was trying to leave Dunkirk by doing anything he could. I feel like I am part of his “virtual” team: supporting him along the way and feeling nervous everytime he tried to do something to gain his freedom. I could totally relate to Mike Rylance’s role as a dad who wanted to do something in behalf of his soldier son who passed away in the war. Mr. Dawson’s story was told in a simple yet effective manner which makes me symphatized even more to him. Surprisingly, I love Jack Lowden’s Collins character, whom I find somehow interesting, though he only appeared in less than a 30% portion of the movie. 

Overall it was a very good and entertaining movie which for sure lasts in my mind. Nolan obviously had a job well done. No doubt it gets my 5 out of 5 stars rate. 


Weekly Photo Challenge: Collage

Another catching up with Weekly Photo Challenge of Collage. I can only think about my family and friends who are truly precious for me and give colors to my life. Thank you for everything my dears! ❤️


Review: “Spiderman Homecoming”

Title: Spiderman Homecoming
Director: Jon Watts
Writers: Jonathan Goldstein (screenplay), John Francis Daley (screenplay)
Stars: Tom Holland, Michael Keaton, Robert Downey Jr.

Having had a fighting experience with The Avengers, Peter Parker a.k.a Spiderman (Tom Holland) returned home with excitement to face another adventure with the superheroes. With a mentor of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.), Peter expected to do more action and prove himself as a decent superhero who can be a part of Avengers. When days passing by with no call from Stark to join the Avengers, the so-not-patient Peter decided to find himself a significant crime to handle and show to Stark that he is someone to consider as superhero and not a your everyday teenager. That’s when Vulture (Michael Keaton) and his gang, who got their power from alien stones (Chitauri), emerged as new and dangerous villain. Will Peter prove that he is good enough as a superhero to save the day?

Spiderman Homecoming gave me a quite different vibe compared to previous Spiderman movies. I feel like it was more family friendly, or teenagers friendly to be precise. Though (of course) there were fighting scenes, they were relatively safe, meaning no excessive blood or dismembered body part (maybe I am exaggerating, sorry 😅) or any kind of wound and cut that you usually saw after a tough fight between a superhero and a villain. Even the last fight between Spiderman and Vulture was not too harsh, proven when Peter could still stand after being beaten up just couple of minutes before. Now this can be good or bad depending on someone’s preference. For me it’s somehow okay-ish, means I can accept it but would not mind to have bolder fighting scenes since I like action movies. 

Other things that I like about the movie was the humor and the character. I feel like the humor was sufficient in term of amount and also placed properly along the movie. Peter’s character as a teenager who was curious, excited, naive and ambitious, was believable and made me fell in love. I think Tom Holland did a good job, and honestly, he is my favorite Peter Parker so far from all Spiderman movies. Ned as Peter’s best friend was also funny and fit the role perfectly. 

Overall it was a funny and very entertaining movie to watch. I am looking forward to see the next movie of Spiderman 🙂