Wonder Woman has been acclaimed by critics and audiences alike, providing a shot of fun and levity to Warner Bros’ gloomy and derided DC Extended Universe and breaking numerous box office records.
However one man who remains unimpressed by the film and its success is James Cameron, he of Aliens, Terminator and Avatar fame, who expressed his misgivings in a recent Guardian interview.
Cameron, who is known for his strong female characterisations of heroines such as Ellen Ripley and Sarah Connor, conceded that he liked the film, but cried foul of its feminist credentials.“All of the self-congratulatory back-patting Hollywood’s been doing over Wonder Woman has been so misguided,” he said. “She’s an objectified icon, and it’s just male Hollywood doing the same old thing…to me, it’s a step backwards.”
He went on to draw comparisons between the Amazonian princess and Sarah Connor, the protagonist of his Terminator films: “Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon. She was strong, she was troubled, she was a terrible mother, and she earned the respect of the audience through pure grit. And to me, [the benefit of characters like Sarah] is so obvious. I mean, half the audience is female!”
The director of Wonder Woman, Patty Jenkins, took to Twitter to post a response to Cameron. She wrote that “James Cameron’s inability to understand what Wonder Woman is, or stands for, to women all over the world is unsurprising as, though he is a great filmmaker, he is not a woman…if women have to always be hard, tough and troubled to be strong, and we aren’t free to be multidimensional or celebrate an icon of women everywhere because she is attractive and loving, then we haven’t come very far have we.”
Cameron is currently working on four sequels to Avatar, with Sigourney Weaver (who played Ellen Ripley in the Aliens franchise) expected to feature in them. Wonder Woman will be seen again in this year’s Justice League, with a standalone sequel for the character scheduled to be released on December 13, 2019.