Hollywood

The X-Men time travel their way back from franchise hell.

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X-Men: First Class deserves more love for resurrecting the X-Men franchise.  It’s not perfectly clear that Matthew Vaugn and Jane Goldman were directly responsible for First Class being a success, and I suspect they’re still responsible this time around, as they got overall storyline credits. They also deserve major thumbs up for casting Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, and James McAvoy to incredibly well-redefined roles.

Based on these foundations, Bryan Singer made one heck of a movie. He brought about his full producing force to morph the franchise into a spiritual sequel to The Avengers. This is a hugely well-thought-out mega-blockbuster.

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[do action=”moment” emo=”HolyShit” title=”Warp me, baby.”/]

Who is this portal lady, exactly? She just won my heart a thousand times over with her precise ability. Sadly, like most new characters, we don’t get a chance to learn anything about their backstory because plot, plot, plot!

[do action=”moment” emo=”WTF” title=”Kitty Pride is semi-useful for once.”/]

Guys, it’s pretty obvious! Kitty Pride can go THROUGH things, so it’s a given that she can go THROUGH time. Right? Okay, I’ll admit to not understanding how her new magic set of mutant powers work but at least, I’m glad to see her get a promotion from running around to laying her hands reasonably close to mutant temples.

Where does this power come from exactly?

Where does this power come from exactly?

[do action=”moment” emo=”Cliche” title=”Some of that Austin Powers humor.”/]

When Wolverine’s consciousness gets thrown back in time, he cracks a few jokes about being so 21st century and none of them hit home. That’s because we, as a public, are pretty tired of these lame ‘outtatime’ jokes. There’s a reason why Mike Myers doesn’t do movies anymore.

[do action=”moment” emo=”Anticlimactic” title=”Xavier is revealed to be a junkie.”/]

When Wolverine starts looking for his wise professor, he stumbles on an unassuming blue monster. How things have changed. Then we find out Charles Xavier takes normcore shots to the arm on a regular basis, so much so that he seems addicted to it. What is this, the anti-mutant X-Men movie? Let’s kick some ass, boys!

[do action=”moment” emo=”Clever” title=”Mutants were sent to war, y’know?”/]

You have to give it to the writer for this perfect concoction of a new Xavier/Magneto conflict: the Vietnam War. It’s also a brand-new occasion to bring politics into the mix. Let me just temper this praise by stating that I really don’t buy the ‘mutants in disguise’ premise just by looking at young Toad.

See? Mutants are hiding in plain sight in this movie.

See? Mutants are hiding in plain sight in this movie.

[do action=”moment” emo=”Triumphant” title=”Quicksilver likes acid and progressive music.”/]

I’ll be the first to admit that I really didn’t get the cheap metallic Quicksilver outfit from the minute I laid eyes on it. Turns out the secret to making it work is Evan Peter’s incredible charisma. His action setpiece is the most joy I’ve felt at the theater in a while.

[do action=”moment” emo=”Insane” title=”Assassination attempt gone CRAZY.”/]

How on Earth did they pull this off? Seriously. The scene where Mystique attempts to kill Peter Dinklage is a thing of marvel (pun and all). We manage to get storylines going for Xavier, Beast, Magneto, Mystique and Wolverine all at the same time, with each character gaining something by the end. While delivering superb action.

[do action=”moment” emo=”Insane” title=”The great stadium-displacing incident.”/]

Just how ambitious is this movie exactly? First they have this Nixon impersonator who isn’t shy to be made fun of, and then we get taken over by an awesomely powerful magneto. Again, we find plenty of character development along with the plot developments.

[do action=”moment” emo=”Fun” title=”Meanwhile, the future is chaos.”/]

All the mutants get killed off in interesting CGI battles to very little emotional impact since we know their faith will change in about a minute or so.

Assassinations aplenty!

Assassinations aplenty!

[do action=”moment” emo=”Cool” title=”The happiest ending of all.”/]

Seeing the original X-Men cast get some sort of happy ending by the end makes me all fuzzy inside. It’s a great callback to the start of this franchise and it makes us want to go back to it right away. Sadly, this is probably the last time we’ll see this expensive cast brought together.

X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

I don't see how you could go through the summer without seeing this spectacle of a movie. Go watch it. Now.

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