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X-Men: Days of Future Past
Origin of the Sentinels
Ex-Men: Angel (Warning: Contains Adult Language. Parental Discretion is Advised)
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Director: Bryan Singer
Writers: Simon Kinberg, Jane Goldman, Matthew Vaughn
Cast: Hugh Jackman, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Halle Berry, Anna Paquin, Ellen Page, Peter Dinklage, Shawn Ashmore, Omar Sy, Evan Peters, Josh Helman, Daniel Cudmore, Bingbing Fan, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellan, Adan Canto, Booboo Stewart, Lucas Till, Evan Jonigkeit, Kelsey Grammer, Famke Janssen, James Marsden
Synopsis: The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.
MPAA Rating: Rated PG- 13 for sequences of intense sci-fi violence and action, some suggestive material, nudity and language
Ex-Men: Wolverine (Warning: Contains Adult Language. Parental Discretion is Advised)
Ex-Men: Magneto (Warning: Contains Adult Language. Parental Discretion is Advised)
Time to review another movie there...bub...(pulls out adamantium claws)
"X-Men: Days of Future Past" is not only the best "X-Men" related movie that I've ever seen, but it's arguably one of the best superhero films of all time. Loosely based on the popular story line in the "X-Men" comic book series. The movie essentially starts off in a post apocalyptic future, where mutants are constantly at war with these mechanical monstrosities known only as the Sentinels.
Humanity built an army of them after an incident that happened in the 1970s, as a means to protect themselves against mutants. Sadly, the Sentinels also targeted regular humans that carried the mutant gene that could be potentially passed on to their future offspring. As we see the beginning, we're treated to a wide angled shot of post apocalyptic New York. The city is laid in waste, as one could tell it's been devastated by war over the years.
Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page) is somehow able to send mutants back in time, so they can warn others about this apocalyptic future. However, she's only able to send them back as far as two weeks because the mind can only handle so much before it starts to break. Each time a mutant is sent through time, the timeline changes completely, and the only one who remembers it before it was changed is the mutant that gets sent back.
In one last ditch effort to stop the war before it even begins, Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) volunteers to go back to the 1970s, as his healing factor makes his mind perfect for time travel. Therefore, even if his mind breaks from going back too far into the past, his mind will be able to heal up quite easily. Once he's back in the seventies, he goes on a mission to find Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and the young Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), to stop a horrific incident from happening. Although there's really no assurance that the war will be stopped by preventing such a disaster, but it's only reasonable hope they have.
Along the way, they meet various other mutants that help them like Quicksilver (Evan Peters), who possesses superhuman speed and reflexes. And, the film manages to tie in it's story line with real life historical events like the JFK assassination, and the Vietnam War. Indeed, this is probably the most ambiguous superhero film that I've ever seen.
Although Wolverine is the main character again, it never feels like another Wolverine and the X-Men story arc. If anything, it still manages to feel like a team film, as young Charles Xavier and Magneto carry the film just as much Hugh Jackman does. And unlike the first two "X-Men" movies, every main character that's introduced serves a purpose. None of them are wasted, and each one is given their moments to shine.
"X-Men Days of Future Past" doesn't even feel like a true superhero film, as it seems more like a science fiction spy espionage flick that happens to feature the "X-Men." The story is excellent in it's execution, as it covers so much. Hell, it even wraps up most of the loose plot holes that plagued the original "X-Men" trilogy. (i.e. Xavier's ability to walk in a flashback scene, in "X-Men 3")
Sadly, that's not to say that all the plot holes were addressed. For starters, it never fully explains how Xavier was able to come back from dying, in "X-Men 3." And, it even creates a new plot hole with Kitty Pryde, as it never tells us how she's able to send people back in time. Granted, it might be explained in the comics, but in the movie, it's never fully addressed. At the beginning of the film, she somehow has already developed the ability to send people back in time, so we're forced to accept it for the sake of plot convenience.
Although the concept of how time travel works in this movie was explained rather well, but it's never certain how Kitty was able to master such a technique. However, it never ruins the movie though, but it's worth pointing out.
The movie not only features a strong social commentary on racism, but it also manages to tell a deep story arc between Mystique and Xavier that it's arguably the best part of the film. Granted, Wolverine is the main character, and his story arc is still equally engaging. However, James McAvoy and Jennifer Lawrence practically steal the movie from him once they're introduced. Plus, Michael Fassbender kills it as Magneto, as he portrays the character with a sense of cunning and refined dignity; while still embodying that intimidating presence.
Patrick Stewart plays the elderly Xavier with class and sophistication. While James McAvoy, he plays the young Charles as a reckless young man, who's lost his way. A man who's lost everything over the years, and ponders where his life has gone. Thinking he's lost his purpose in life, until fate intervenes. Like young Xavier, Wolverine too comes off as a weary warrior who's lost his way. A man who's tired of seeing all his loved ones die, as he desperately tries to right the wrongs of the past.
Indeed, each main character plays a pivotal role to play, as it never feels like any of them are wasted. Nor does it ever feel like it's solely Wolverine's story. This is a true "X-Men" film, as it was always meant to be.
The special effects are simply breath taking to watch. Although I hesitate to say they're better than the visual effects we've seen in "Captain America: The Winter Soldier", as the future Sentinels never look realistic. Overall though, the visual effects are executed well, and I love the cinematography shots throughout the movie. The wide angled shot at the beginning gives the audience the perfect impression to allow us to see how dark this post apocalyptic future is. And, the rotating camera angles is a nice touch as well. The action scenes are well choreographed, as you can see the movements of the characters perfectly.
Plus, you really have to applaud the film for it's other technical effects like sound mixing, sound effects and etc. Not to mention, some of the humor is very nice, as there's a funny scene involving Quicksilver at the Pentagon that I'm sure many audiences will find funny.
Although, I should warn readers that if you choose to see this film in theaters, then I would advise against seeing it in 3-D Some of the scenes feature a particularly dark setting, which doesn't help the 3-D stand out much, so you're better off seeing the regular version.
In the end, I'd have to say "X-Men: Days of Future Past" is arguably one of the best superhero films of all time. Sure, there's a few minor plot holes that the film never addresses, but it's never enough to ruin the movie. Definitely worth checking out in theaters if you get a chance to see it.
Also, you might want to watch this film all the way until the very end of the credits, as there's a scene that sets up the next "X-Men" movie coming in 2016.
9.8 / 10
- Wraps up most of the plot holes from the previous X-Men movies
- Story is well executed, and features a lot of strong social commentary on racism
- Special effects are great
- The cinematography is outstanding
- All the main characters serve a purpose, and never feels like a solo Wolverine story; in spite of him being the main protagonist
- Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence and Hugh Jackman deliver solid performances.
- Excellent fight choreography
- Time travel concept is explained rather well; in spite of the fact that we never learn how Kitty is able to send people to the past to begin with.
- Has a great end credits scene that sets up "X-Men: Apocalypse" nicely.
- Some plot holes are never addressed like how Xavier came back to life from dying in "X-Men 3", and it creates a new one because it never tells us how Kitty developed the ability to send people back in time.
- 3-D conversion is lousy. You're better off seeing the regular version in theaters.
- Sentinels never look realistic
© 2014 Steven Escareno