black panther


a review.

For most of you, not counting Ark of course, I guess, have watched the hyped  over hyped movie of 2018, black panther a Marvel Comics production. First, I am not watching any hyped movie again in a long time. I hate disappointments, especially in movies, where my only reason for paying to watch is to be mesmerized, entertained and possibly to be taken to a different plane of existence, even just momentarily.

Following persuasion by friends, yours truly watched the movie and has a few things to say about it.

First, we can agree with T’challa’s father, the late king, that a father who has not taught his child well, has failed. We can have a long debate on whether a good man can be a king. That, I think, is in the province of philosophy.

IS advancement to be seen in skyscrapers and toys? Apart from the tall buildings and toys, very little of life in Wakanda is seen. I can’t for the life of me, tell what the life in Wakanda is like. Well, it is a monarchy, there is a council of elders, there is a ritual fight for installation of the king, a fight which methinks, shouldn’t be bloody but ceremonial, especially given that a king is chosen from the royal family. Any contender for the throne could just get a Ji jitsu trainer for the opportune moment.

I like the women though, especially Okoye and Shuri. Okoye’s loyalty to the nation of Wakanda is beyond dispute. She tells W’kabi she would kill him for Wakanda without question. When Killmonger becomes king, she makes it known her allegiance is to Wakanda regardless of who sits on the throne. Shuri reminds me of Q in Bond movies. She is at home with gadgets in a way that makes you, for a few moments, want to be her friend. You may, if she is up to it, be transported to the future. It is also the women who save Wakanda from Killmonger. Shuri, Nakia and the queen mother, devastated with the defeat of T’Challa look for allies to get the usurper out of the throne. It is their determination that at the end, that makes it possible for Wakanda to be involved in world affairs, but in a more humane way, through science and technology not war.

There is, an invocation of the role of ancestors in the African community. This happens, if I recall correctly, three times, the first at the enthronement of T’Challa, then of Killmonger and thirdly when T’Challa is sent to the ancestors where he declines to join them in eternal repose, arguing there is work to be done. I wish I could on occasion tell the ancestors to eff off!

As with most Hollywood movies, no movie is complete without a villain, even if it is a cardboard character. And for Black Panther, the villain is Killmonger. He believes, for whatever reason, his rightful place is the throne of Wakanda. After helping the artifact thief, Klaue, steal and escape from a CIA interrogation room, he kills him only to deliver the body as a trophy to Wakanda, where he challenges T’Challa. A ritual fight is organized, T’Challa gets the beating of the century and a for a brief interlude, we have a madman general at the helm. His idea of domination means conquering the world, with weapons, the American dream. I think the Americans, dream of an empire like the British empire of old, so that their imagination of an advanced civilization must include in it empire building.

Go watch the movie at a theater near you. You may be entertained.

For better reviews than I can ever write, visit here, here and here, written by a friend of mine

About makagutu

As Onyango Makagutu I am Kenyan, as far as I am a man, I am a citizen of the world

55 thoughts on “black panther

  1. Arkenaten says:

    ….not counting Ark of course,

    Yes … probably not my kind of film. I prefer the likes of Grumpy Old Men which, aside from the fanaticism with fishing, is, in many ways, edging ever closer to becoming somewhat pseudo-biographical.
    🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Just so you know, about 35% to 45% of Americans, when asked, will tell you Wakanda is a real African country that has real diplomatic relations with the U.S. And some wonder how tRump is President. As a huge comic book geek, I loved the movie. I strongly recommend not seeing this is such things are not your, shall we say, cup of chicken soup. “Ah, that f*ckin’ movie sucked,” an acquaintance said to me a few days back. “I HATE these kinds of movies, and this sucked!” In such cases, the problem isn’t the movie, it’s the idiot who dropped 15 bucks on something they ALREADY KNOW THEY DON’T LIKE. “I hate jalapenos on my pizza but order them any way and then complain about how they ruined the pizza.” I simply find the utter idiocy of such people stunning. And that they’d want their opinion taken seriously amazes me even more. So, my review of said movie is see it if you like Marvel films; don’t if you don’t. There are more movies of every kind being made at this time in Hollywood and across the world, than at any other time in history. So, drop your money on one you think you’ll like–not one you already know you won’t.
    I dropped 15 bucks on it cause I love such things and it was well worth the cash for me. I’ll even buy the blu-ray and add it to my geeky comic book movie collection when it comes out.
    If you don’t care for such things, don’t see the film then say it wasn’t good cause you don’t care much for such things–it makes you sound like an idjit.
    Not in any way saying any of this about you, my friend. I’m just commenting on how odd I find some folk’s behavior when it comes to giving opinions on things they ALREADY know they won’t like. This is a comic book movie made for comic book fans. It ain’t gonna change your opinion on such films if ya don’t care for them. I’ll pop over to read your pal’s reviews in a bit.

    Liked by 2 people

    • makagutu says:

      A person who says that need to be whipped thoroughly on the ass.

      Liked by 2 people

      • I know. It’s so odd. I mean. I get it, This type of movie isn’t something everyone will like or want to see, but if you know this, why in Thor’s name would you go see it? I don’t care for the ballet. So, rather than go and say, “GOD! That sucked!” I don’t go. Let those who like it go. Don’t like Shakespeare? Don’t spend money on it. Odd.

        Liked by 1 person

      • One objective fact that’s true about Black Panther is that it will make WELL over a billion dollars at the box office. For a film written by and directed by a black man and starring a predominantly black cast, AND taking place in Africa, even though Wakanda is fictional, to do something like that is a colossal achievement and will finally open the door to many more films being directed by black folks. See, the only color Hollywood sees is green. Once they know they can make money, they don’t care about anything else but. The film proves what all sensible human beings should know: Black folks can be talented film makers, too, AND their movie can make $$$$.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I have not seen the movie, although it’s because it’s a Marvel feature. Their movies are generally okay for superficial thrill rides, but they often miss the mark on anything more substantial. Any significant characterization and development usually is accidental. This kind of thing typically comes out in sequels.

    With regards to empire, the notion is actually an old trope of evil villains in American cinema. Generally Americans are distrustful and even somewhat antagonistic towards empires. We often don’t see our current policies and behaviors as imperialistic, but I think that has to do with the state of denial we’ve had to live with since the end of the second World War. And some Americans have abused this to push us internationally into the very thing most Americans despise.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. But what did you think of it as a statement on race? I’ve read many black activists saying it’s a step forward.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. jim- says:

    Americans don’t like colonialism, but it seems America does it anyway, like an autonomous “thing” of sorts, it elects and appoints those who do.

    Liked by 1 person

    • makagutu says:

      I think what Americans don’t like and what they do are exactly different but I have been told it is for the good of us all. What do I know

      Liked by 2 people

      • jim- says:

        You are right about that Mak. We are gods gift to the world, and very few have lived abroad and know how intrusive we are. Ignorance often proves itself too slowly among the ignorant. It’s a trickle up mentality from the Christian pulpit.

        Liked by 1 person

        • makagutu says:

          When I grow up, I want to come to America, the land of milk and honey

          Liked by 1 person

          • jim- says:

            Lol. Well it is a land of opportunity. It can be a bit stressful navigating the system sometimes, but there is money. As bad as it is sometimes, if you want to take an idea and run with it, that is still an option. I have a good friend in Norway, and the term they use there is Janteloven. It’s a byproduct of the socialist safety net and it means “why try”. Settling for mediocrity is becoming a way of life. Here, not so much. People are still eager to make their mark, and do so frequently. I can order you a trump bumper sticker if you decide on Alabama. You’ll fit right in 😂

            Like

  6. john zande says:

    Haven’t seen it.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. renudepride says:

    I wasn’t planning on going to the cinema to watch the film. I usually am not entertained or even kept awake by over-hyped sensationalism and endlessly promoted films. However, my twin (who rarely goes to the theater) saw Black Panther has now it’s all he references. He was awed at the entire production. I guess I’ll have to go over the Spring Break. Thanks for your review and the links! Have a good weekend! Naked hugs!

    Like

  8. Peter says:

    Over hype really can kill the movie experience, so much so that if I suggest a movie to someone I say something like ‘you may like this’ rather than ‘this is the greatest movie ever’.

    By contrast low expectations can have the reverse effect. I well remember the negative reaction to The Phantom Menace open its release in 1999. So much so that despite be a Sci-fi fan I gave the movie a pass when it was released in the theatre. Some time later I purchased the DVD and watched it with low expectations and actually quite enjoyed it.

    In the case of Black Panther I have not seen it, I tend to wait for movies to come out on DVD now as I find the volume in movie theatres to be way too loud for me. At home I can control the experience.

    Like

  9. Barry says:

    Unfortunately any movie which has any form of pyrotechnics, fast action, rapid camera movement, or sudden changes in light or sound intensity puts me into sensory overload. The only safe option for me is to wait until it comes out on the small screen. However as I’m not a fan of Marvel comics, I’m not likely to watch it anyway. I can make much better use of my time such as lawn mowing 😊

    Like

    • makagutu says:

      Lawn mowing has the added benefit of fostering peace at home.
      There was this movie we watched a while back where some woman separated from the husband because their lawn is the only dead one in the neighbourhood.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. shelldigger says:

    I haven’t seen it, yet. I’m with JZ, I’ll catch it when it comes out on cable. I don’t mind living 6 months in the past. Hell here in W Tn, we are 30 years in the past every damn day. What’s another 6 months going to hurt?

    Like

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