Sun06252017

LAST_UPDATEFri, 30 Jun 2017 8am

Why The World Needs Wonder Woman Right Now

Pic: Warner BrosPic: Warner Bros

LOS ANGELES: Wonder Woman saved Jacqueline Lee’s life. Which is why the 43-year-old is extremely excited to watch the movie with her husband, son and daughter. The iconic superheroine finally gets her first standalone film in the cinematic world and Lee cannot wait.

“Would you believe me if I told you that it was this very fictional superhero goddess who pulled me out of some of the darkest times in my youth, when I was dealing with zero self-confidence, depression and a terribly toxic relationship?” said Lee. “When I realised that no one rescues Wonder Woman and that she rescues herself, it was then that I realised I must do the same.”

For 38-year-old Siva Arjun, the impression Wonder Woman left was a little different but just as impactful while he was growing up in Mumbai.

“At eight years old, I suddenly realised I commiserated with an Amazonian princess named Diana Prince. And I was a little Indian boy!” he shared.

“It wasn’t just because of her awesome powers or fighting skills. It was because she was always about peace and justice. Whether she was the Wonder Woman in the comics I was reading or Lynda Carter’s Wonder Woman I saw on television, I identified with her! And that helped this bullied little boy out of some tough moments.”

Lee and Siva are just two reasons out of arguably millions of others why the director and cast of Wonder Woman were compelled to make the best possible film they could.

After all, Wonder Woman has always been held up as the universal role model, a pacifist superheroine expounding love and peace. Created in 1941 by noted psychologist William Marston for DC comics, Wonder Woman has evolved into a feminist icon that represents so many different things to many different people.

After more than seven decades, the most iconic female superhero in the world is finally getting her own movie. Though she was immortalised on the small screen by the inimitable Lynda Carter in the 1970s popular television series, this is the first time Wonder Woman is headlining her own film.

A SYMBOL FOR INCLUSION

Director Patty Jenkins told Channel NewsAsia she can pinpoint the universal appeal of mythical Amazonian warrior-princess Diana Prince and why the character is so important in today’s cultural climate.

“I think she’s the idealised versions of ourselves — for little girls and women. She is completely realised in a powerful way that makes her able to be a hero but she doesn’t lose any of her femininity to do so,” she said during our interview ahead of the world premiere of the film.

“She is loving and kind and beautiful and generous and thoughtful. It’s like (a) ‘how to become a more powerful version of ourselves’ that we can absolutely aspire to in every way.”

For Danish actress Connie Nielsen who plays Wonder Woman’s mother Queen Hippolyta, the universality of this demi-goddess stems from justice and fairness.

“It’s because she comes from a perspective of love and justice, so justice is really just the administrative arm of love. It’s a way of saying you know we have to keep this fair for everybody and that’s what she represents,” she told Channel NewsAsia.

“I think our brains really understand fairness, or the lack of fairness, from an early age on.”

Inclusion, said Nielsen, is the all-important symbol of the Wonder Woman.

“Unfortunately when young girls are growing up, they’re not allowed to be who they really are. That goes for boys as well,” continued Nielsen.

“So if Wonder Woman is a symbol for something, I think for a lot of people, it’s a symbol for inclusion. For everybody to have the right to be who they are, anything that they are.”

- Channel News Asia