Although it remains the most critically beloved of Warner Bros.’ DC Comics movies—with special praise going to director Patty Jenkins’ ability to mix bombastic war stories with a lighter, less dreary tone than the franchise’s other films—not everybody’s crazy about the recent Wonder Woman movie. Case in point: director James Cameron, who took time out of a recent Guardian interview to call out the film’s reception as “self-congratulatory back-patting,” dubbing the film “just male Hollywood doing the same old thing.”
Cameron explicitly (and negatively) compared Gal Gadot’s superhero to his own co-creation, Sarah Connor, calling Wonder Woman “an objectified icon” and an example of “a step backwards.” “Sarah Connor was not a beauty icon,” said Cameron. “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!”
That half of the audience seemed pretty okay with Gadot’s portrayal, though, given that the film brought in $800 million at the box office, and kudos from critics regardless of their gender. Hell, even Cameron admits that he actually liked it, noting, “I’m not saying I didn’t like the movie” even as he blasted it for what he called an overly sexualized presentation of its title character.