Top 100 Films Of The 2010’s – #98 – Black Panther (2018)


RELEASED: 13th February 2018

DIRECTOR: Ryan Coogler

CAST: Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita N’yongo, Danai Gurira, Martin Freeman, Daniel Kaluuya, Letitia Wright, Winston Duke, Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, Florence Kasumba, John Kani, Sterling K. Brown and Andy Serkis

BUDGET: $200m

BOX OFFICE WORLDWIDE: $1.3bn

AWARDS: 3 Academy Awards (Best Original Score, Best Costume Design and Best Production Design) and 1 BAFTA (Best Visual Effects)

T’Challa, heir to the hidden but advanced kingdom of Wakanda, must step forward to lead his people into a new future and must confront a challenger from his country’s past.

 

Following the death of his father T’Chaka, T’Challa returns home to the kingdom of Wakanda to assume the throne. Upon his return, he learns that Ulysses Klaue has stolen a Wakandan artifact from a London Museum and plans to bring him back for previous crimes against Wakanda. Meanwhile, an American black ops soldier Erik Stevens, also known as Killmonger, is hoping to make his own way to Wakanda as he has his own agenda to take over the throne.

 

Black Panther was and still is a beautifully constructed film, from Rachel Morrison’s cinematography, to Hannah Beachler’s production design, as Wakanda comes to life by blending African culture with futuristic tech (Vibranium in this case). This is also further complimented by Ludwig Göransson’s African-influenced award-winning score, as well as Ruth E. Carter’s costume designs, from the various tribes to the Dora Milaje. Even though it’s a Marvel Studios film, Ryan Coogler brought on board his collaborators his previous films to create his own palette of what’s expected from a MCU film, as the film is character driven, filled with political intrigue, tackling issues that is being tackled such as racism, colonialism and slavery and even examines the relationship between Africans and African-Americans. The ensemble cast is great overall, especially with many recognisable names in supporting roles (Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker as examples) adding some gravitas to the film. Danai Gurira, Letitia Wright and Winston Duke shine through with their performances with the screentime they have, Chadwick Boseman is a commanding presence as T’Challa and Michael B. Jordan’s Killmonger is one of the best villains to come from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, as his motives as a villain are personal, extreme and yet it’s easy to be sympathetic with his motivations.

 

FAVOURITE SCENE: The car chase sequence in Busan, Korea with T’Challa, Nakia, Okoye and Shuri chasing after Ulysses Klaue.

FAVOURITE QUOTE: “Just bury me in the ocean with my ancestors who jumped from ships, ’cause they knew death was better than bondage.” – Erik Killmonger

DID YOU KNOW: During an interview with Michel Martin on the radio program “All Things Considered,” Danai Gurira (Okoye) said that the language spoken by Wakandans is a real language, Xhosa, a South African language characterised by clicks and glottal stops: “It’s the same language that is native to Nelson Mandela. It’s from the Cape region of South Africa. And Mr. John Kani, who plays T’Challa’s father, T’Chaka, he’s Xhosa. And so he – they started and agreed to that language being the language of Wakanda in Captain America: Civil War.”

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