Can Black Panther Take Home The Oscars

Nick Woodhouse, Junior Analyst

I have seen it twice since its February release–which could very well be the highest box office hit of the year–Marvel’s Black Panther. This was a huge year for Marvel with 3 movies coming out in the 2018 calendar year, including the long awaited Avengers:  Infinity War in Late April. On opening weekend, Black Panther grossed nearly 200 million (that number includes my purchase) in ticket sales, a massive opening for any movie. Marvel does a “marvelous” job of hooking their fans and constant box office success has become a staple of Marvel films.




There’s plenty of good in this movie. Black Panther was surrounded in hype somewhat due the director in charge, Ryan Coogler, who choreographed “Creed” in 2015. Not only is Coogler an up and coming director in the industry, but he also represents African-American filmmakers very well. The greatest thing about this movie may really well be the diversity. Taking place in Wakanda, Africa–this movie contains almost entirely African to African-American actors. This is a completely new look on a superhero movies and really can relate to more cultures than just the white majority. I thought the African-American heavy cast along with the use of a soundtrack predominately created by African-American artist was really a neat idea. Having said that though, the 2 main actors in this that are white actually deliver some great performances as side characters. Like normally, Andy Serkis steals every scene that he is put in as “Klaw”, and you gotta give props to the Hobbit himself, Martin Freeman, for a job well done as American CIA Agent “Everett Ross”. The performances are the best thing about this movie. Michael B Jordan surprised me so much in this movie with his incredible work as the antagonist “Erik Kilmongerer”. Completely blew me away. Then you have Daniel Kaluuya with another strong performance, and of course Chad Bosewick always does well and strives at his “Black Panther” role.




Unfortunately, this movie just isn’t perfect. I was definitely okay with replacing more action sequences with story promoting scenes, but the action scenes that there were just didn’t do it for me. Shockingly, the CGI late in this movie was really just not that well done, absolutely flabbergasting coming from a Marvel movie. I think the story itself needs a little work as well, maybe some overly unrealistic plot moments. The movie isn’t perfect.


Is it Oscar Worthy?


Especially being a passionate advocate of superhero films, it’s awesome to see the rise in that industry on the biggest stage. Ever since the shocking snub of Christopher Nolan’s Batman thriller “The Dark Knight”, it seems as if superhero films have began to be much more universally considered by the Academy. Evidence to that is Wolverine’s finale in “Logan” granting a nomination for its screenplay last year. I think Black Panther is more than a superhero movie due to its cultural message. Although I doubt Black Panther will have at any acting awards a part from a possible Michael B. Jordan nom for best supporting actor, Black Panther has the potential to take home awards in screenplay and special effects. A real breakthrough would be if Ryan Coogler gets a nomination for his skillful work in directing the movie. It’s no Dark Knight, or Spider Man 2, but a revolutionary film for the industry and I only can hope its stays relevant down the stretch.

Grade: B+