Black Panther is awesome! If you haven’t seen it don’t bother reading any further because spoilers are coming. Dragons & Spaceships is not quick to debate much but this was a movie that sent us into endless conversations about the themes in the movie and their message to the world.
(Seriously, there will be details shown here that could ruin your Black Panther experience, so turn away now!)
The movie is topping the charts for more than just being another action-packed Marvel movie. This all black cast is tearing up the place and if you didn’t know by now, you’re about to find out. Here are just a few of the themes that make this movie a powerful contender and for the first time, people may be looking at a superhero movie as an award winner.
Fathers and Sons
The theme of black fathers and their sons is strong in this film. It reminds us that historically, black men are portrayed as often absent. In this film, two fathers are killed unexpectedly and the effect their deaths have on their surviving sons.
Not everyone is from a completely broken family and it made us want to shout for joy at the way these men instilled greatness in their sons. Although the outcomes aren’t the same the impact and resonance of what their fathers taught them remained.
Of course, there is a mention of caring for their mothers and families but the point of how impactful a father’s death can be is not lost on us.
An ideal society where men and women are able to perform non-traditional roles and still be portrayed as lovers who respect each other and work together was stunning and at the same time heart-wrenching. There was never a moment in the movie where anyone was put down for not being masculine or feminine enough. Wow! Could that really happen? We think so.
The women in this film are powerful and gorgeous. A deadly combination for the poor guys that need to keep up with them. However, they never put their men down nor make them feel like less than men for not doing what they are impassioned to do. These are women confident in their sexuality, power, and intelligence.
The class system is alive and well in the world. To our dismay, it is something that no government on Earth has been able to find a solution to, and it is mentioned often in the film. Governments that have an abundance continue to dominate the have-nots and worse refuse to provide aid when it seems morally correct to do so. We’re not going to get into a governmental debate so instead let’s get back to the movie.
In this film, Wakanda is an African country within its own bubble and boundaries. They live and thrive on a special gift of metal and flowers that created their unbreakable metal and their Black Panther protector. They were never harvested for slaves, they were never oppressed and they were encouraged to shoot for the stars when it came to their education and technology.
At a crucial climax in the movie the question is again asked, should the Wakandans protect themselves at the cost of ignoring all others outside of their sphere or take down the walls and agree to help those less fortunate.
Superheroes vs. Heroes
Superhero movies have one important thing in common. There is a hero who has a power that is otherworldly, that has changed them into becoming someone who can help their people to survive against anything that threatens their survival. In this film, they did something that is a little different.
The Black Panther dons his abilities like the technologically advanced suit that he wears. The abilities of the Black Panther are taken from him twice during the course of the movie and by choice. Yes, by choice! In order for them to maintain their cultural ritual combat for the kingship, the young prince takes a potion to remove the abilities of the Black Panther in order to fight on even ground against a competitor. This not only solidifies him as an able and fair leader but as a protector and fighter for his people with or without the power of the Black Panther serum.
Then there are the heroes of the movie. The men and women who fight for what’s right without any special powers at all. These people showed up and showed out. They often stole the movie with their fighting and technical prowess as well as strength of character.
But is it still a Marvel movie or is it just a political statement?
We won’t bore you with the technical, and special effects of the movie. Those are a given. If you’re going to see a Marvel movie with action and heart, this one won’t disappoint. Not only did it empower black men and women, it showed how attractive, and diverse we are in the world. Believe the hype! This movie is well worth the price of a full priced ticket and we had no problem paying it, neither will you.