Friday, May 23, 2014

Review: X-Men - Days Of Future Past

X-Men: Days Of Future Past
Starring: Hugh Jackman, James MacAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Peter Dinklage, Nicholas Hoult, Halle Berry, Ellen Page, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellan, Shawn Ashmore
Rated: PG-13

I don't want your few-cha!
          ~Charles Xavier

X-Men: Days Of Future Past is a fun and exciting race against the clock comic superhero time travel extravaganza that will sure please audiences and fans alike.  It's going to be really really tough for me to not talk spoilers, but trust me, this review will be SPOILER FREE.  Brian Singer returns as well as many of the original cast members to blend in with the new crew from First Class to make one big impactful turn on the X-Men film franchise.
Set in the future, things have gone down the tubes for mutants.  Living in the age of the Sentinels, the world is a dark place and mutants and humans alike are being executed right and left.  This is all believed to be caused by the events of an assassination by Mystique in 1973, shooting the Sentinel creator Bolivar Trask.  Using Kitty Pryde's power to swap consciousness with one's past self, Wolverine is sent back to 1973 to team with the younger selves of Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr to prevent Mystique and hopefully change history for a brighter future.
First and foremost, this film plays as a sequel to X-Men: First Class and should definitely be taken that way.  You are going to definitely hear some nit picking regarding some continuity with the X-Men timeline, but I think in the end its all pretty irrelevant.  Also, for me, yes I see the questions raised about a few things, but I guess those details really didn't matter to me or the film for that matter in order for it to work.  This takes place many years down the road from The Wolverine and I imagine the characters in the film had those questions answered for them at some point, and to stave off some "whuh" or disbelief from audiences, some things are left rightly untackled.  The only thing I really can't explain is how Bolivar Trask goes from being Bill Duke to Peter Dinklage, but I'm not caring too much.
This movie is too good and too much fun to sit and pick at irrelevant details.  There are many fun action pieces and good chemistry within Hugh Jackman and the original cast.  I like this sort of "dark place" we're brought into with the characters' lives following First Class.  Its not the cheery fun we thought it might have been.  MacAvoy and Fassbender pick up right where they left off and up their intensity level.  And while Wolverine is in the movie and the catalyst for the time travel, he is merely the device to move this story and make it happen.  They actually allow this story to be Xavier, Magneto, Mystique, Beast and Trasks giving it that true sequel to First Class feeling.  Also, I dig how it plays in the 70s culture.
Can we talk about Quicksilver?  This is why we don't judge something from a promo photo in Entertainment Weekly until we see it.  Evan Peters steals this movie with the couple scenes he's in.  His look, which got torn to shreds by the internet geeks, isn't half bad when you see it in the film.  Quicksilver also gets to be the major player in what will probably be one of, if not the, best action sequences of the entire summer.  The Pentagon rescue of Magneto is just an out and out awesome achievement in execution and superhero mutant action.  People are going to love Quicksilver after this film.  We'll see if Age of Ultron can manage to do the same next summer.  But, this Quicksilver definitely will be finding a place in the X-Men film following this one.
While this film is the big "team up" most of the original cast members who return are merely cameos when its all said and done, but I was extremely impressed with how it DIDN'T feel like they were.  While they're screen time and shooting schedule was likely short, their presence manages to feel much bigger in terms of length and importance.  And the trailers might lead one to believe there's a mutant overcrowding in the film, but it really isn't even close and never feels that way.  If anything with the scale of the film and the "bigness" of it, I was surprised and delighted at how intimate it all feels in the end.  Its a huge movie with big implications and major stakes that still manages to feel personal in the end.
Sit back and enjoy the excitement of X-Men: Days Of Future Past.  Its a big, fun time travel movie that will please audiences and fans alike.  Get in the car and let this roller coaster take you for its ride.  Let this movie take you where its going before you ask out of the car for a second to look at the track.  I had a blast with this film and as an X-Men fan it lived far up to my expectations.  I also purposely didn't return to the comic or cartoon arc in preparation for this film because I didn't want my mind focuses on its power as an adaptation and I wanted to judge it on its film entertainment alone.  I'm happy that my #1 movie to see this summer didn't disappoint and I really want to see it again before it exits theaters (and I don't really do that too often anymore).

RATING:  4.5/5

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