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May
26

X-Men: Days of Future Awesome!

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We’ve had 14 years of great X-Men movies (X-Men, X2, X-Men:First Class), ok X-Men movies (X-Men: Origins – Wolverine, The Wolverine) and of course – an awful X-Men movie (X-Men: The Last Stand). And finally, we have X-Men: Days of Future Past directed by original X-Men, X2 director – Bryan Singer. So does Singer still have what it takes to keep up with the modern era of comicbook movies? YES!

X-Men: FC was a pretty damn good movie. In fact, it was my favourite comicbook movie – CBM of 2011. But besides that movie, I haven’t sincerely enjoyed an X-Men movie since X2 and that’s from 2003! I mean sure, there was The Wolverine and X-Men: Origins, but they were just popcorn flicks to me. Just turn my brain off and enjoy the spectacle – which I did. And even though I thoroughly enjoyed X-Men: FC – directed by Matthew Vaughan (Kickass), I still wasn’t too excited about X-Men: DOFP because Bryan Singer was directing. Why is that a bad thing? Because of Superman Returns! I could/should do a rant about Superman Returns but this is about the X-Men: DOFP. Basically, Superman Returns was a huge let down action and story-wise so I wasn’t too confident with Singer’s ability to make a great X-Men movie especially with how high the bar’s been set with The Dark Knight, The Avengers, and of course, Captain America: The Winter Soldier. So I thought – at best, I’d be in for another brainless popcorn flick with X-Men: DOFP. I can tell you now, this is one of the few times where I’m happy to be wrong, because the movie was AWESOME! Oh, and this will be spoiler-free.

Action
With good ol’ Hugh Jackman dominating the marketing, I assumed he’d be the center of the action – which isn’t a bad thing because Wolverine is bad ass, but we’ve just seen it 100 million times. Fortunately, the action isn’t Wolverine-centered. Now if you’re a Wolverine fan – don’t worry, he still gets his action, but I found the C-list mutants vs. the Sentinels to be far more entertaining than Wolverine’s traditional slash & self-heal tactics.

Why wouldn't I assume this movie was all about Wolverine? Seriously.

Why wouldn’t I assume this movie was all about Wolverine? Seriously.

There’s some pretty bad-ass mutant vs. Sentinel action in this movie. Singer made a conscious effort to show how each mutant uses their abilities differently when taking on Sentinels. So you won’t be bored with seeing the same abilities used over and over again, but you get to see a wide-variety used in intelligent and refreshing ways. Since Singer showcases different mutants, it also means you get a good balance of CGI action and traditional choreographed-fighting and real explosive action. And this movie gets pretty violent sometimes! There’s obviously no blood & gore since it’s PG-13, but this movie definitely isn’t for kids.

Story
Basically in the future, mutants are hunted and killed by robots called Sentinels. Obviously, like all other movies that involve robots, they take things too far and the world is left in ashes. Our future mutants have no other choice, but to save their world by altering the past. Simple storyline, but it was told well. Nothing too complicated, but not completely predictable where you’d be bored to tears.

What else is so great about the story? If you’re an X-Men fan – you’ve probably already read my mind (pun intended! Hohoho!). That’s right, due to time travel, this movie cleverly fixes past mistakes from older films. Well, only one movie – X-Men: The Last Stand. With the time-travel plot, this movie softly reboots the X-Men franchise and now anything is possible.

Brett Ratner? The Rush Hour guy? How bad could it be?

Brett Ratner? The Rush Hour guy? How bad could it be?

Singer also ensured that each character played a prominent role in the story and had just the right amount of screen time. Again, I was worried it’d be Wolverine-centered but it wasn’t! Charles, Eric, Raven, and Logan all had an equal amount of screen time. Clearly, Singer knows exactly how to make a film with an ensemble cast.

Oh, before I move onto other subjects I have to mention the humour! Man, I can’t remember the last time I laughed so hard at the movie theatre. Finally, a CBM that provides the right balance of story, action, and comedy. No, I definitely wouldn’t classify this movie as an action-comedy because there aren’t that many comedic scenes. There are only a few, but they were all hilarious and well-timed. Honestly, Ironman 3 and Thor 2 are near the bottom of my CBM list because of the excessive and forced humour. In X-Men: DOFP, when the humour does come up, it’s natural, organic, and genuinely funny. So you can definitely look forward to laughing at the movie theatre when you watch this movie.

Quicksilver
Honestly, when I saw the promotional pictures for this character, I rolled my eyes so far back that I saw the inside of my brain. I mean just look at these pictures!

X-Men's Quicksilver VS Avenger's Quicksilver

X-Men’s Quicksilver VS Avenger’s Quicksilver

Tell me, which one looks bad-ass and which one looks ridiculous. In case you didn’t know, the character Quicksilver is in this movie and will also be in the Avengers sequel next year. However, they’re played by different actors and clearly – they look and probably will act differently. X-Men’s Quicksilver looks pretty awful in the promotional pictures. I mean, we’re borderline Arnold/Mr. Freeze cheese level here. Well, again, I was happy to be wrong because Quicksilver’s scenes in the movie were definitely the most memorable. Singer showcased his mutant abilities in a bad-ass, visually-stunning, and very cool way. I sincerely hope Quicksilver will be back in X-Men: Apocolapyse. Joss Whedon – you’ve got your work cut out for you.

Actors
This movie is just filled with power-house actors with Ian Mckellen, Patrick Stewart, James Mcavoy, Peter Dinklage, Eric Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, and of course Hugh Jackman. Singer gives each actor the right amount of screen time for every actor and character to shine. And the answer is no, I’m not sick of seeing Hugh Jackman as Wolverine play a prominent role in an X-Men movie because he’s good at what he does! If he’s good, why fix it?

Conclusion
X-Men: DOFP easily deserves an 7.8/10 and will join my blu-ray collection because of the simple but not predictable storytelling, great acting, refreshing action sequences, and clever rebooting of the franchise. It was almost an 8, however, there is one ridiculously impossible plot device used and when I saw it, it totally pulled me out of the movie experience because it was so-far-fetched. And unfortunately, this non-sense is an integral part of the story, so it does have big impact on things. In any case – I can still confidently say, welcome back Bryan Singer. I can’t wait to see the next movie. The X-Men’s future never looked better.

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