Actress Letitia Wright plays Princess Shuri in the movie ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’. Photo: courtesy Marvel Studios
Fernando Creole. (YO)
‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’ opens this weekend in theaters cinema like a sequel of the film that narrates the origin of the Black Panther.
The film arrives in the midst of atypical circumstances after the sudden death of the actor Chadwick Boseman (1976-2020), who played the Marvel superhero between 2016 and 2019.
Boseman first played Black Panther in ‘Captain America: Civil War’ in 2016. He then went on to star in 2018’s ‘Black Panther’ and appeared in two other films from the Marvel Cinematic Universe (UCM) until 2019.
The last one was in ‘Avengers: Endgame’one year before his death due to complications in a cancer which he kept secret since he was diagnosed in 2016.
A minute of silence for Chadwick
Boseman’s absence left the future of the ‘Black Panther’ saga in uncertainty. At first, the Marvel studios refused to replace to Boseman by another interpreter, as well as to use the digital cloning.
But ‘the show must go on’ and Marvel with Kevin Feige at the helm found a way to continue the story of the Black Panther and at the same time offer a tribute to its protagonist.
And so the tape starts, with the memory of the Prince T’Chala and the Black Panther by Boseman. The moving sequence is followed by the classic intro of the logo of Marvel Studiosbut with the difference that for the first time it takes place in complete silence.
Boseman’s inevitable absence led the filmmakers to the question and issue that would drive the film. narrative in ‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’: How to deal with grief and overcome losses?
Fiction and reality in ‘Wakanda Forever’
For the story of Wakanda to move forward in a world without T’Challait makes sense to explore what the loss meant for the people close to the actor who is also the character.
It is there where, in a certain way, fiction and reality intersect. In the film, King T’Chala has died and there is no one who feels that effect more strongly and painfully than his younger sister Shuri (Letitia Wright) and his mother, Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassett).
In this sequel and tribute, the plot twist is also used to reinforce the discourse on diversity and genderon which Marvel and the industry in general have been working for a few years.
One year after T’Chala’s death, Ramonda has assumed the throne and Shuri has become the successor princess to it.
Behind these two women who position themselves as the new Wakandan leaders two women coexist who mourn the loss of a husband and a son, in one case, and of a father and a brother, in another.
The mother and daughter relationship and the way they come to terms with and go through grief draws Wright and Bassett into an emotional exploration of their characters that feels authentic to their performances.
The death of King T’Chala awakens the ambition of other nations over the precious and exclusive resource of the vibranium of Wakanda, which could well be extrapolated to the oil, water or uranium outside of fiction.
The risk that this resource potentially dangerous falls into the wrong hands, puts on alert another nation, hitherto unknown, that also protects the vibranium.
From the depths of the ocean rises Namor (Tenoch Huerta), king of a hidden underwater nation called Talokan. His appearance here shows that Wakanda is not as safe a place as they believed and proposes to join forces with the Wakandans to neutralize the threat.
At the time, ‘Black Panther’ was a platform to celebrate the African culture and this sequel opens that spectrum to explore the mesoamerican historyat the meeting of two civilizations.
References to these two cultures are organically integrated into the colors and textures, costumes, makeup and other symbolic elements of the production design.
Both nations have common interest, but they do not agree on how to solve it. While Namor proposes a preventive offensive, Ramonda searches for a peaceful solution.
From this conflict derives all the action which Ryan Coogler directs flawlessly, in scenes that bear the imprint of the Marvel show.
The work of visual effects and digital images They put the story on a futuristic stage, in which universal themes and some conjunctural milestones are addressed.
T’Chala is gone but the Black Panther is not, and continues his legacy in an adventure of almost three hours, which does not stop offering surprises after the end credits.
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‘Black Panther: Wakanda Forever’, the succession after the duel for King T’Chala