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Black Panther Fans Are Divided Over The CGI Quality In Wakanda Forever

Three things are certain in life: death, taxes, and netizens complaining about the visual effects in the latest blockbuster project. But over the last few years, the conversation surrounding the CGI in Marvel films has gotten too loud to ignore. Many are curious as to why Marvel Studios, a billion dollar powerhouse with indispensable resources, is able to release visually flawed projects in cinemas and on Disney+. It's easy to assume that a vocal minority has dominated the conversation, expecting perfection from every project, but going through several different forums and social media platforms, it's clear that even casual fans are curious to know what's happening behind-the-scenes.

YouTube boasts dozens of viral videos pointing out moments and scenes where Marvel Studios' CGI is spotty and poor. Other creatives on the platform, like notable VFX artists, have made a living dissecting and breaking down instances of poor CGI, often taking shots at Marvel projects (via Corridor Crew). Blame, however, shouldn't lie on the artists. The controversy surrounding Marvel's visual effects have become so raucous that former CG artist Dhruv Govill took to Twitter to call the studio a "horrible client." Many creatives and artists have pointed out how Marvel frequently shifts deadlines on projects due to its steady stream of content, forcing artists to quickly cobble together a show or film's visuals. Several other VFX artists have opened up about Marvel's practices (via CNET), which include detailing how the studio strikes up contracts with production houses who offer the lowest rates, who end up pushing their artists to a breaking point to meet unrealistic deadlines.

The release of "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" has brought Marvel's CGI problem back into the minds of many. This time, the conversation surrounding the VFX is more mixed and divided than ever. 

Some fans think Black Panther: Wakanda Forever's CGI is a huge step up for Marvel

"Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" has received considerable praise from critics and currently holds a Certified Fresh rating of 84% on Rotten Tomatoes. While positive reviews were expected, it's a breath of fresh air to see fans praise the film's visual effects. In the wake of projects like "She-Hulk" and "Thor: Love and Thunder," which were criticized for their visual effects, the latest journey to Wakanda is receiving mostly positive remarks. 

Twitter user @mcuquake was brutally honest with their opinion, saying "the CGI in #WakandaForever was unbelievable. I'm not sure what happened in 'Thor 4' but they definitely got a good budget for this film because it looked immaculate." @getawayonce echoed a similar sentiment, saying that director Ryan Coogler's latest "destroyed all of the other marvel releases this year in the visuals and CGI aspects." The positive comments about the film's visual effects were found on Reddit as well, with user u/1TripLeeFan saying they liked "how the cgi at the end was tasteful and looked really good ... compared to the last movie."

Is there a reason as to why "Wakanda Forever" has received extra care in the visual effects departments? Production on the film wrapped in late March (via ComicBook.com), giving VFX houses over 7 months of time to create the world of Wakanda. Could Marvel also be taking its recent criticism to heart, trying to maintain a positive image after a barrage of negative reports regarding their VFX manifested in recent months? It's not a far-fetched possibility considering even Marvel creatives, like "She-Hulk" helmer Jessica Gao, have called out the studio for poorly treating VFX companies and their workers.

Others believe Marvel has some more work to do

While some found the CGI in "Black Panther: Wakanda Forever" to be great, others were mixed on it. Twitter user @robhuthuthoi expressed that the film was just shy of perfect because of wonky visual effects. @Radwan_A8 had a similar opinion, saying "I totally give the movie 8.5/10 and I gave it that rating just because of some stretched moments and 2-3 bad CGI moments."

Taking to Reddit, user u/Ok-Flamingo-1499 pointed out that the "Black Panther" sequel has mostly great visual effects, apart from one key moment. "There was a bad CGI moment with the fire in the final fight but not anything enough to ruin the film," they said. u/ymetwaly53 replied, suggesting that the film's visual woes extended beyond the scene involving the fire/explosion in the third act. "There [were] actually a few bad cgi moments in the final act to an otherwise beautiful and great looking film so I excused it," u/ymetwaly53 said. "The moments were, as you said, the fire, the cat-like Black Panther moment on the side of the ship, most of the Ironheart scenes, and a couple of the Midnight Angels scenes especially w their masks down." 

Most users acknowledge that a few miscalculated moments didn't detract from the overall film. In general, reception seems to be positive when it comes to the film's VFX, unlike  "Thor: Love and Thunder," which notably had its CGI criticized by its own director (via Vulture). Following the flurry of negative reports surrounding the overworked Marvel VFX artists, it's fantastic to see that most fans are praising the visuals from "Wakanda Forever," even if they're not perfect.