It’s not out in the cinemas yet but the critics are already raving about Black Panther, the latest addition to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). Heck, the movie even had a rare 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes for two days until two smart-ass critics came along to tarnish the perfect rating to 98%.

If you are still in two minds whether to catch the movie, I’d say “CATCH IT!” Albeit not as well-known as the other Marvel characters that have made it the big screen so far, Black Panther has surprisingly delivered a truly unique cinematic experience. Here are five reasons why it is different from the usual Marvel fare:

  1. The setting

From sprawling vistas to majestic waterfalls, the settings of Black Panther is a refreshing change from the other Marvel movies, which were mostly set in the U.S. of A. Granted, the onscreen setting of the fictitious African country called Wakanda is really just computer-generated imagery (CGI). Still, it’s a welcomed change from the usual cityscape in most Marvel movies. I was kinda reminded of The Lion King while watching Black Panther. You get the drift.

  1. The women are badass

If 2017 had looked like the year of the woman in Hollywood (think DC’s Wonder Woman), Black Panther looks set to continue that trend of strong female characters.

The women in Black Panther are no damsels in distress. The Dora Milaje, an all-female team of bodyguards in Wakanda, is commanding and imposing, and sure brings much life to the movie with their ass-kicking moves.

  1. Stunning costumes

It’s hard not to take notice of the beautiful costumes in Black Panther. The movie pays homage to the rich African culture by infusing sartorial elements from real-life African tribes into the costumes.

  1. The hero has a sister

It’s not very often that you come across a superhero with a sister, and a wisecracking one at that. Shuri (played by Letitia Wright) steals the show as the sister of Black Panther/T’Challa (played by Chadwick Boseman). She’s funny and witty, and pulls no punches in making a fool of her brother.

  1. Diversity

Black Panther marks the debut for Marvel’s first black comic book superhero. While I have no issues with white superheroes, it is refreshing to see people of colour being the centre of a Marvel movie. This is a great stride in the right direction, in my opinion. Meanwhile, I await the first Chinese superhero in the Marvel universe to be created.

Black Panther will be showing at theatres across Singapore from 14 February 2018.