The Woman King

The Woman King ★★★½

2022 UK Releases Ranked

“You do not remember me? Now you will never forget!”

A solid historical action epic following an all female army of an African kingdom. There are plenty of moments of real greatness, with strong performances and excellent battle sequences that feel grand and epic. It’s a shame that the film feels rather too bloated. There’s too many subplots and a couple of awkward character beats from side characters that don’t really lead to much in the middle act, especially the character of Malik especially feels out of place and not developed enough to be meaningful. Sadly it kills the pacing at times in an otherwise very entertaining and engrossing movie. 

Gina Prince-Bythewood brings together the action and most of the character driven elements together really well. The action is great, well choreographed, feeling realistically brutal and violent, without going too overboard. The cinematography is always gorgeous, making a great use of the gorgeous African landscape and lighting, to create a kingdom that really does come to life. 

The ensemble cast is great too. Everyone works well in their roles, coming together with plenty of chemistry together. Lashana Lynch is brilliantly charismatic and charming. With Thuso Mbedu being an excellent choice for the lead, she almost served as an audience surrogate, being brought into this world of female warriors, her angry and complexities perfectly displayed by Thuso. I really think this is a breakout performance, as she just about stands head to head with some other great performances. None more so than, Viola Davis who steals the show. She always delivers, but here she brings power and gravitas that makes every scene she is in immediately compelling to watch. 

It’s an entertaining historical action epic, despite it’s flaws and somewhat bloated nature. The performances, great production design, gorgeous costumes, and some brilliant action scenes certainly bring it up!

Block or Report

Dan liked these reviews