Movie Review – Black Panther: Wakanda Forever

Sequel to “Black Panther” powered by emotion and death of actor Chadwick Boseman

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Black Panther: a being of superhuman strength, speed and instincts. Many people thought that the story of this hero died with the passing of actor Chadwick Boseman, who played Black Panther in the original movie. But luckily for fans, Marvel still found a way to continue the lineage of the protector of Wakanda in their new release “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.” 

“Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” is a very emotional movie full of tragedy. Due to Chadwick Boseman’s passing, we are given a new protagonist, King T’Challa’s sister, Shuri. Throughout the movie, we are on an emotional rollercoaster of Shuri’s journey. 

Due to Wakanda revealing its vast potential of weaponry and healing through its most valuable resource, vibranium, foreign countries have sought out the rare metal throughout the world, seeking it for themselves. Because of their search for vibranium, a new and hidden world power armed with the power of vibranium rises up and threatens war against Wakanda and the world. With the fate of the world in the balance, Shuri must resolve the conflict within herself in order to be able to save Wakanda and the world without losing herself to vengeance and grief.

One thing I think all viewers will appreciate from Marvel is that “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” starts with the Wakandans’ ritual of mourning their deceased king. In a way, it is a memorial to honor Chadwick Boseman and how the death of the actor plays a key role in the emotional plot of “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.”

Since “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” has a big piece of of its plot supported by a past event, I am fond of the fact that the movie also includes previous antagonists that can still have an effect in sequels, as we see Killmonger advise Shuri in the ancestral plane to not be noble like her brother and to take revenge against those who caused her so much pain. This adds another conflict within Shuri on top of the outside conflicts in the movie. 

There is one thing I would change in that scene, though. When the next Black Panther goes into the ancestral plane, the prequel shows all the previous Black Panthers. “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” only shows Killmonger, and I was a little disappointed that Chadwick Boseman’s character, T’Challa, was not there. Given that CGI nowadays is very realistic and we are able to recreate people’s voices, there was a missed opportunity to include T’Challa or even one of the other past Black Panthers. 

Speaking of antagonists, many movies nowadays are providing more information on antagonists that makes them more relatable and likable, and “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” does a great job on this angle. In the movie, we see a flashback from the film’s antagonist, Namor. In this flashback, we see his motives for why he threatened the world and that he wasn’t a volatile person, he was only trying to protect his kingdom, and this helps the viewers better relate to Namor. 

In the movie, people won’t relate with just the characters but the actors as well. With Chadwick Boseman gone, Letitia Wright (Shuri) had to fill in shoes of astounding proportion. Some people may argue that she did a great job, while others could argue that no one could ever replace Chadwick Boseman. While carrying the pressure of Chadwick Boseman’s legacy, Wright provided a perfect amount of raw emotion for Shuri, and her acting made us empathize with a grieving girl with the weight of the world on her shoulders. 

Being the foundation of “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever,” T’Challa’s absence is heartfelt, and it’s interesting to follow and watch Shuri on her journey of overcoming multiple tragedies. Throughout the struggle to save the world, we are shown the conflict within Shuri and how in the end, she must choose between vengeance or mercy. For this reason, I’d recommend “Black Panther: Wakanda Forever” because it fills the absence left by Chadwick Boseman’s death by continuing the story of the Black Panther through Shuri.