Friday, May 26, 2006

X-Men: Last Stand

*possible spoilers* - but I really think I managed to keep my review pretty vague.


The X-Men movies seem to have gone the way of the comics - tossing out character developement for flashy battle scenes and predictable plot lines. As much as I was hoping for more, I can't say I was too suprised at the lack of quality in the latest X movie.

There was little to no character developement in this movie. I was pleased to see much more of Kitty in this movie, unfotunately both her and Colossus are just throwen into the story without us getting to know them. Rogue, who we had come to love from the previous movies, barely had any screen time. Wolverine was yet again the "star" of the show - to the point where they screwed with the only good thing Scott Summers ever had. Oh, and that's the other thing. Scott finally got to have a bit of a role... which was wasted during the course of the movie. I will admit that Angel was gorgeous. I've always liked the Angel character and even though we didn't get to know him it was still nice to see him fly. The one new addition that did fairly well was Beast. Kelsy Grammer was a great casting call and even Beast's fighting scenes were awesome. Nightcrawler is not in this movie - and there is no explaination as to why he's gone. It's as if he never existed *rolls eyes*. Then there was Callisto - WTF? She was nothing like her comic book counterpart. I didn't even know she was Callisto until I went home and looked at the casting info. All I can assume is that in the world of Hollywood the Morlocks are a bunch of goth kids. Seriously, what were they thinking? Juggernaut didn't really look like himself either, although his personality was much closer to the character than Callisto. Jamie Maddrox? Completely off. This made me sad as I have recently come to like the character of Multiple Man. The actors certaintly did the best job they could - it wasn't thier fault that no one got screen time.

As for the plot... it was like they tried to throw in too many things at once (kind of like the characters!). They had a Dark Phoenix plot, another excuse for crazy mutant battles/protests plot, a Sentinel teaser and what could have been a Morlock plot. The truely regrettable thing is if they had picked one of these plots, stuck with it, and done it right, this would have been an awesome movie. Instead we get a plot straight out of the badly written comic book days - mismatched, poorly patched together and confusing. They don't give you anytime to care about what was happening. Yes, there were "cool" scenes - but all they did was play to the fans of the comic books and did nothing to redeem the actual movie. Then, to top it all off, the ending is so predictable I saw it coming twenty minutes into the movie.



Of course my biggest disappointment in the movie was the fact that they put Jean in some ugly red dress and we never saw Famke Janssen in the Dark Phoenix costume. I mean, c'mon... give me something to work with here!



The movie wasn't a total loss - there were good moments and it was well acted. Seeing Kitty in action was cool. Jean was, as previously mentioned, hot. Hugh Jackman, as always, does a great Wolverine. Ian McKellan was awesome as usual. All in all I will probably end up owning the movie if only to watch Angel fly - but I feel let down somehow. I really hoped for more.

Note: this would have been posted much earlier if not for blogger being bugged out every time I hit the publish button - sorry for the delay!

10 Comments:

Anonymous Jeff said...

Thanks for the review! The X-men movies always seem to be more loved by non-comics fans than they are fans who know the history. Why do you think it is they never want to dress the actors in the comic book versions of the costumes? So who was hotter, Jackman or Famke??

Friday, May 26, 2006  
Blogger Brainiac6 said...

Well, in all fairness most of the X-Men have pretty silly costumes. But the Dark Phoenix costume is one of the best designs I've ever seen in comics. I always like the blue Shadowcat costume as well. I guess the directors realized that a lot of non-comic book fans may have been turned off by Cyclops and Wolvie in spandex.

As for who was hotter - that's a hard call. Jackman is very sexy as Wolverine, but in some ways he was sexier when he was more feral - on the other hand Jean always looks better as Dark Phoenix. So I'd have to say in this movie Famke beat out Jackman - but just barely and only because they gave her long hair.

Friday, May 26, 2006  
Anonymous Jim said...

I agree with your review for the most part, although I thought Magneto came across a little lame in the movie and Ian's acting was below his standard.

Bottom line I enjoyed the movie, but it was a good "B" flick and not an "A" movie that is could have been.

Saturday, May 27, 2006  
Anonymous Jeff said...

Most reviewers are giving this movie mad props as the best of the 3 X-men flicks. I've heard mutant fans say that the 2nd was the best. At least they got a successful franchise going. I'm just hoping that the public isn't getting tired of superhero movies.

Saturday, May 27, 2006  
Blogger Brainiac6 said...

I'm not sure why so many reviews are saying that - it really doesn't make sense to me. Actually I thought the first one was the best but that was because I didn't like a lot of what they did with Nightcrawler in the second movie.

I still can't figure out why they went all crazy with the religous aspect of that character and almost completely missed out on his gypsy-swashbuckler personality. Oh well.

Saturday, May 27, 2006  
Anonymous Jeff said...

From Newsarama:

X3 SCORES HIGHEST OPENING FRIDAY EVER - ESTIMATES RAISED

Early estimates for X-Men: The Last Stand’s North American Friday box office are beginning to come in and it looks like X3 is once again surpassing industry estimates and is poised to have the second largest opening day of any movie ever - trailing only Star Wars: Episode 3's $50m opening day totals last year - and the best Friday opening ever.

Various estimates are putting X3’s Friday take at between $44.2 and $44.5 million, a whopping 40 to 43% over X2: X-Men United’s at-the-time-surprising $31.2m opening Friday (which in turn was a huge surprise improvement over the first X-Men’s $21m opening).

Showing the power of DVD sales and pay-per-view and cable television showings, the Marvel/Fox franchise’s growth curve has continued, overcoming what was largely negative buzz surrounding the film during production.

Industry estimates projected X3’s opening four-day Memorial Day weekend total to come in around $100-110m, which would already set an all-time Memorial Day weekend record, but it’s now possible even those estimates will climb north based on Friday’s figures. X3 could reach those totals and set the 4-day record by the end of Sunday, and now may land in the neighborhood of $125m by the time people return to school and work on Tuesday.

This will leave Fox with enviable dilemma of what direction to take the franchise. Because of climbing production costs, as the film’s title indicates it was being set-up as to the last of this particular series, with somewhat smaller-scale/less costly spin-offs such as a Wolverine feature likely next in line. However, if comparable box office returns stay on-pace or even exceed the escalating production costs, Fox may have to rethink their long-terms plans.

Also interesting to observe will be if and how this affects the overall profile of comic books in Hollywood, and if this will fuel yet another new wave of studios searching for their next comic book franchise.

Saturday, May 27, 2006  
Blogger Arielle said...

Well - I think I might be able to provide the reason why the X-Men movies have been so popular despite having some serious plot and/or character problems... Marvel fans. Weren't there some complaints recently about how Marvel fans will buy any Marvel book, regardless of how atrocious it is? Many Marvel fans may also be the kind of people to appreciate style over substance. It's a thought, anyway.

I sure wish they would go with the smaller productions centered around one particular character or small group.

Saturday, May 27, 2006  
Blogger Brainiac6 said...

Y'know, I will admit it was a better moive than Episode 3... but that's not saying much.

Saturday, May 27, 2006  
Blogger STBD said...

I agree, the film was flat in comparison to X2, which surprised me by actually being good. Not perfect, but above average -- and yes, Nightcrawler was horrible in that film.

You hit the nail on the head with X3's problem: no one cares. It was all plot and no character, and no one gets emotionally involved in plots. I think this can be attributed to the direction of Brett Ratner, who has never been known for his subtlety or facility with character (Red Dragon, anyone?). Whereas Bryan Singer developed a deft touch for the humanizing elements of the X-Men and their foes, Ratner was content to allow melodrama and catch-phrases to pass for characterization. Even scenes that should have been emotionally engaging (like Hank McCoy's first encounter with a certain child) were delivered so obviously that there was no room for audience engagement.

And really, Magneto deserved better than his last line of dialogue.

Sunday, May 28, 2006  
Blogger Brainiac6 said...

Some of it can be blamed on the director I'm sure - but I'm not sure how even a good directer could have pulled that screen play together. It's sad that it's doing so well because America is telling Hollywood that this is what we want from our entertainment.

Sunday, May 28, 2006  

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