7 Essential MCU Movies: Black Panther (2017)

Before Avengers: Endgame arrives this week, let’s revisit the 7 essential MCU movies you should rewatch before the Infinity Saga comes to a close…

 

What’s it about? After his father’s death in Captain America: Civil WarT’Challa now must defend the technologically-gifted kingdom of Wakanda as both its protector the Black Panther and its king. But there is another who seeks the throne: T’Challa’s cousin, the ruthless Killmonger. Can T’Challa reclaim the throne and redeem the sins of his father?

 

Why is it essential? Black Panther made a big impact on fans when he debuted in Civil War, so we were expecting his solo movie to be great. We weren’t expecting it to make the cultural impact that it did, though, becoming one of the most important MCU films, both in the real world and in-universe. Wakanda opening its borders, for instance, sets up its status as the last defence of Earth in the battle with Thanos in Avengers: Infinity War. 

 

Why is it worth re-watching? Director Ryan Coogler proved himself one of the best filmmakers in the MCU with Black Panther, delivering a movie that’s thrilling, beautiful to look at, has a killer soundtrack, a terrific cast of characters and, what really makes it soar, has some interesting themes and societal messages. If IW hadn’t been so damn good, it would have been the best Marvel movie of 2017. Though it likely will go down as that, what with its ground-breaking Best Picture Oscar nomination.

What’s the best scene? Can I say anytime Michael B. Jordan is on screen? The actor brings a lot of intensity and charisma to Killmonger that he just adds that extra magic to every scene he’s in. We often talk about how sympathetic Thanos is but Erik Stevens got there first with the whole “villain who actually has a somewhat heroic endgame in mind.” If pushed, I’d have to go for the first ceremonial fight between Erik and T’Challa as the movie’s best sequence.

 

What should I watch out for? Black Panther isn’t made up of easter eggs in the same way as most Marvel films, but there is one cool nod that fans have spotted. Killmonger’s outfit – the blue shirt under an armored vest with orange straps – appears to be a homage to Vegeta from Dragon Ball ZJordan is known to be a massive anime lover so this could be deliberate.

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