Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Parent Guide
This movie has two main plotlines and spends most of its time on the ridiculous one.
Parent Movie Review
With the unexpected death of King T’Challa a.k.a. the Black Panther (Chadwick Boseman), the kingdom of Wakanda is plunged into mourning. Queen Ramonda (Angela Bassettt) resumes the throne and with steely resilience protects her people from global powers desperate to obtain some of the rare vibranium that enables Wakanda’s technical superiority. Despite her wisdom and experience, there are new threats facing the kingdom that even the queen can’t imagine…
Dazzled by Wakandan technology, the US and other nations have launched a massive search for more vibranium. When a marine drilling platform is attacked by blue undersea dwellers, America blames the Wakandans. What no one knows is that this new power will also imperil Wakanda and only a new Black Panther can save their people.
There are two plots in this movie, of vastly different quality. The first involves Wakanda protecting its mineral reserves against the greed of global military powers. When the American delegate to the United Nations insists that Wakanda cannot be allowed to hoard such a dangerous resource lest they make weapons of mass destruction, Queen Ramonda fires back. She insists that Wakanda doesn’t control its vibranium because it’s dangerous, but because those powers who seek it are the real danger. Had the screenwriters run with this plot, a much better film would have resulted.
The second plot is where the problems begin. The undersea Talokans are, frankly, silly. Their aquatic world, although rendered in impressive detail, feels unconvincing and their leader, new villain Namor (Tenoch Huerta) is ridiculous. Unlike his water-breathing subjects, Namor is amphibious, able to breathe both air and water. He also has pointed ears, for no apparent reason, and ridiculously tiny wings on his ankles that give him the ability to fly. (Don’t even get me started on the aerodynamics here. My brain hurt every time he was on screen.)
As I bewailed the looniness of the plot to a colleague, he told me, “You’re over-thinking this movie. You are spending way too much time analyzing a story about fish people and magic metal.” He’s right. This is not a serious movie and if you take it seriously, it will drive you insane.
If, on the other hand, you just want endless action sequences in exotic locations involving beautiful people in intriguing costumes, this is the kind of escape you might well enjoy. Throw in a racially diverse cast that highlights the strength and intellectual brilliance of Black women and this gives parents looking for representation something to cheer about. Less praiseworthy is an excessive amount of violence, some in self defence and some driven by vengeance. When characters aren’t punching or throwing each other, they are shooting or spearing one another. To be honest, after a while the fights become tedious: how often can people stab each other with spears before it just becomes “same old, same old”? Even a new Black Panther and a surprise Iron Man-type character don’t really provide a buzz when one is needed.
The only real jolt in the entire film comes in the cut scene, so whatever you do, don’t leave before the credits roll. The movie wraps up with a couple of plot ends designed as sequel bait, but it’s the cut scene that really kicks off the rest of the Wakandan part of the Marvel Comic Universe. To be honest, I hope Marvel ditches the silly blue Avatar knock-offs and focuses on the challenges on land. It looks like Wakanda is going to be a much more interesting place in future.Directed by Ryan Coogler. Starring Tenoch Huerta, Angela Bassett, Letitia Wright. Running time: 161 minutes. Theatrical release November 11, 2022. Updated November 19, 2022
Watch the trailer for Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever
Rating & Content Info
Why is Black Panther: Wakanda Forever rated PG-13? Black Panther: Wakanda Forever is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for sequences of strong violence, action and some language
Violence: There are a mind-numbing number of fight scenes involving punching, kicking, and tossing. People are shot with firearms, stabbed with spears and knives, and attacked with weapons that deliver an electrical charge. Man-made floods sweep people away and some drown as a result. A main character dies on screen. A person is attacked with fire and buildings are seen burning. In a flashback scene, indigenous people are shown being beaten by enslavers. People jump into rivers and oceans while in a hypnotic trance, leading to their deaths by drowning. A person with special powers spins a helicopter and makes it crash,
Sexual Content: None noted.
Profanity: There are three scatological curses, a term of deity, and a minor profanity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: None noted.
Page last updated November 19, 2022
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever Parents' Guide
Why do the Wakandans and Talokans go to war? What do you think would have happened if the initial meeting between Namor and Ramonda and Shurri had gone differently? Do you think Wakanda and Taloka have issues that make them natural allies?
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This movie is a sequel to Black Panther. The titular character also appears in other Marvel movies, including Captain America: Civil War, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame.
The late Chadwick Boseman not only created the role of T’Challa, he also had a celebrated career in Hollywood. To get a taste of his abilities, you can try 42, Marshall, and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.