I've posted a video with my thoughts on the film, check it out on YouTube
if you're so inclined. But someone left a comment that got me thinking about something I didn't address, so I'll point it out here.
The commenter disliked the overt happiness of the ending scene, when Diana enjoys her moment in the sun after vanquishing her nemesis. He said that it didn't express something which I admired about the movie, the character arc which follows our heroine's journey to adulthood. She starts out believing that she can literally end all wars forever, and by the end has to face the fact that she's going to have to keep fighting because humanity will keep fighting.
I found myself defending the seemingly happy ending, with soldiers on both sides shedding their warlike personas and embracing the dawn, happy just to be alive. Because, while on the surface it really is quite a cliche, I think it also helps to demonstrate the virtue of Diana's newfound wisdom.
She knows now that it wasn't "the war to end all wars," just as we in the audience knew it wouldn't be. World War II is still in their future even as they breathe a sigh of relief. But this is why setting the stage during World War I works. I didn't get it at first, but now it makes sense... we NEED to know that there's going to be another war. We need to see that even though Diana was wrong and there will be more bitter conflict in the future, she and the soldiers surrounding her still have a right to find peace in the moment.
Because that's really what Wonder Woman stands for. At least, she does now. We don't need for everything to be good again, forever (to quote Dr. Zoidberg). Things will get bad again, but we don't have to despair because what we've won still matters while we have it.
Superman is the Man of Tomorrow. He inspires us to hope for the future, to look to the sky. To make a better world for the children! And Batman, meanwhile, acts on the past. It defines his life, and he spends it always hunting down those who try to escape from the consequences of their actions.
But Wonder Woman represents the present. That's what this movie has given her. That's what it's all about. Good times come and go, loved ones pass on, but at the end of the day you put the photograph and the watch back in their case and you put your armor back on and focus on what's right in front of you. Yes, that moment in the sun won't last forever. But you can love it right now.
And what was the moral of Man of Steel, again? Stay away from tornadoes? Don't fight next to buildings? Hmm.