Why Wonder Woman Wasn't Really Groundbreaking, According To James Cameron

Wonder Woman in the trenches

Despite being released nearly four months ago, we still haven't stopped discussing and dissecting Patty Jenkins' Wonder Woman. The movie was the DCEU's first critical success, and many believe it to be an important step for women in film. Not only is there a female lead, but it Patty Jenkins is the first woman to direct such a big budget superhero blockbuster. But not everyone feels this way, including the legendary director James Cameron. Cameron had previously criticized Wonder Woman for having such a stunning beauty as the lead character in Gal Gadot. He's since double downed on this idea, but has attempted to clarify his issue with the casting and design of the titular hero.

I mean, she was Miss Israel, and she was wearing a kind of bustier costume that was very form-fitting. She's absolutely drop-dead gorgeous. To me, that's not breaking ground. They had Raquel Welch doing stuff like that in the '60s. It was all in a context of talking about why Sarah Connor --- what Linda [Hamilton] created in 1991 --- was, if not ahead of its time, at least a breakthrough in its time. I don't think it was really ahead of its time because we're still not [giving women these types of roles]. ... So as much as I applaud Patty directing the film and Hollywood, uh, 'letting' a woman direct a major action franchise, I didn't think there was anything groundbreaking in Wonder Woman. I thought it was a good film. Period.

This certainly does shed more of a light on James Cameron's Wonder Woman criticism, while also applauding the film itself. Still, his comment to THR will likely polarize audiences who find the film significant and groundbreaking.

While having a strong female protagonist was no doubt exciting, James Cameron seems to primarily have taken umbrage with Diana's costume, hair, and makeup design. The Amazon looks absolutely perfect in every shot of Wonder Woman, not even letting her hair's perfect curls drop throughout her action sequences and superheroics. Additionally, Gal Gadot's Wonder Woman costume is rather tight and short, once again highlighting how gorgeous the model turned actress is. Cameron seems to think this gets in the way of her characterization, and the ability to connect to the audience.

Of course, there will likely be a fair mount of backlash for this feedback. Diana Prince is part god, which could explain why she looks perfect throughout her adventure with Steve Trevor. And many believe that Gal Gadot's beauty proves that women are truly capable of having it all: looks, empathy, strength, and determination.

James Cameron also goes on to applaud the film itself, and is pleased that Patty Jenkins was given the opportunity to direct such a major motion picture. He seems to see the significance in more women being able to direct action franchises, and subtly criticized Hollywood for not "letting" someone do it sooner.

James Cameron is currently filming his Avatar sequels, and Patty Jenkins is developing the next Wonder Woman movie.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Double majored in theater and literature during undergrad. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid.