CoolHandDuke’s review published on Letterboxd:
There has been a lot of discussed/tweeted debates about the historical inaccuracy of The Woman King. With the little research I did before reviewing this, I can definitely see why it would bring distaste to some. But, this was a very well made film, that’s brilliantly acted, has terrific execution in its combat, and fully represents this group of women as fierce, intelligent and straight up badass. Viola Davis gives another fantastic performance, but she can do that in her sleep. She really stepped up for this role, representing the leadership in her character and always knows how to be the most intimidating presence in the room (in many different ways). Thuso Mbedu really surprised me here. She performed her character arc very believably and is one of the best performances of the year that snuck up on me. It also gives me another reason to watch Barry Jenkin’s The Underground Railroad series. Lashana Lynch has been doing a good job in Marvel, but she killed it in this film. She played the mentor role brilliantly and it shocked me how much she made me care for her character. I can get used to movies not basing everything on actual history or even overdramatizing it, but the script itself had a few flaws. Plenty of developments to the story create arcs and acts that we’ve seen in many other movies similar to this or completely different from it. And the dialogue could seem a bit too modern. The heart and soul The Woman King brings to the table has many good showings of it, but can get distracting with an action or a sentence being more bland than the unique style director Gina Prince-Bythewood was trying to bring. I’m really glad I was able to see this in a theater, and I recommend you to do so if it doesn’t leave theaters within the next week or two. It gets more intriguing each act and even with the reasonings people were wanting to boycott it, the cast and crew did a great job, and they still should be given credit. And like it did with me, made me want to actually look up the history of Dahomey and keep learning further on what was more represented for the film.