Directed by Ryan Coogler | Prod. by Kevin Feige, David J. Grant | PG-13 | 2h 15m | Action
By Jackson Volenec & Patrick Kearney

 The Marvel Cinematic Universe is a franchise that has 18 different films in the series, each grossing hundreds of millions of dollars in the box office. “Black Panther” has grossed $1.2 billion dollars in its box office, and it’s still raking in millions of dollars a month off of its release.

 The reason for the wild success of this film can be attributed to several reasons. This award-winning phenomenon is the first superhero movie that has a cast that is predominantly African-American. Marvel Studios is the first to feature a black superhero on this large of a scale, and it has become the most discussed movie of 2018 so far. This entire film celebrates African culture and breaches topics of racial discrimination; however, these themes of African culture and race are not the only thing that makes this movie successful. This film is superb because of its amazing soundtrack, Ryan Coogler’s breathtaking screenplay and directing, the powerful performances (particularly from Chadwick Boseman and Michael B. Jordan), and the solid plot line that keeps the movie interesting from beginning to end.

 The storyline provides a clear contrast between Prince T’Challa and Killmonger. These characters, unlike in most superhero movies, are actually both relatable and likeable characters. Killmonger’s motives feel human and real, and although he is ultimately wrong and power-hungry, you understand how he got to the point of madness.

 T’Challa, the Black Panther, on the other hand, is a true hero who genuinely cares about his kingdom of Wakanda and the wellbeing of his people. T’Challa values tradition, but he is not opposed to the concept of new ideas that will better Wakanda by the end. The character arc that T’Challa goes through, once again, makes him feel human, and as a viewer, you learn to like him and genuinely care for his cause. To top it all off, nearly every single actor adds a convincing performance, ultimately adding to a very immersive film.

 The soundtrack mainly consists of hip-hop influenced beats mixed with African music, cultivating a fantastic combination of tracks that add authenticity and appropriate tone to the movie. The music will often react to the intensity of the scene, action shot or not; it adds intensity and pressure to already tense scenes of conflict. The specialized songs by Kendrick Lamar and other members of TDE are, as usual, masterfully crafted songs that are tastefully added to certain scenes. Never does it feel like Marvel is using one of their songs to sell advertisement space. Instead, these songs are used sparingly and appropriately.

 The screenplay as a whole was interesting to look at during the movie. There were plenty of scenes that gave us chills while watching, specifically a shot of Killmonger on the throne. The wide-scaled shots of the landscape of Wakanda or South Korea were beautifully done and showed variety in art design, providing many interesting colors that play upon one another. All of the different environments in this movie feel unique and alive; however, there were a handful of scenes in which the CGI had appeared as noticeable and had only slightly taken away from the entire atmosphere of the film.

 As a whole, this film is groundbreaking for several reasons. Although most Marvel movies already have a large fanbase with a general approval rating of the public, this movie will most likely stand out from the bunch and garner a new audience. This film will go down as a record breaker and one of the first of its kind on this large of a scale. As it provides a stellar soundtrack, thrilling action sequences, supported by a talented crew of actors and producers, this film earns a confident 9/10.

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