The Movie Buffer

Monday, May 29, 2006

X-Men: The Last Stand


Warning! Achtung! Spoilers present!


I’d really like to say that this movie was good. I really wanted to like it. I wanted to say that this was a great way to end the trilogy – a nice strong ending. But I was left out in the cold when I saw the film. Non-stop action rarely allows for story development and this was a movie that needed to be explained because there were bigger issues in this one that in the previous movies.

The main story revolves around a mutant antibody that can return mutated DNA back to non-mutated human state. The President of the United States calls for all willing mutants to come and get the drugs and the choice would be optional. Some mutants are elated to finally see a way of having a normal life and the others are angry that the humans are trying to control their superpowers. So lines are drawn, actually, the two sides of this debate even fractures the X-men, Storm violently against the drugs and Beast for the choice of using them. The villains from the previous films see the cure as a threat, so they decide to destroy the drugs in fear that the humans would in fact force the mutant population to take them. The secondary story is the memorial for the fallen comrade, Jean Grey, from X-2. Each character takes the loss differently and this brings about the easy introduction of a new character called the Phoenix. The phoenix is the most powerful mutant on the face of the planet and the X-men hope that she can control her powers whereas Magneto wants to unleash all of her destructive power on all humans.

In this incarnation, the directing is not good at all. I had your back Ratner, I thought you could direct a 100 minute action movie, but you let me down, man! You had the world’s most marketable superhero in Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine and you couldn’t get it done. You had a huge budget and you couldn’t get it done. There was so much scrutiny after your arrival, didn’t you think people would notice that the movie was lackluster. The cutting from scene to scene was patchy, scenes looked like they were just thrown together for time. There were some really long establishing shots and at times when something was needed to ground the action, nothing was provided.

The acting was on par with the previous movies except for Halle Berry, who played Storm like an old fashioned school headmistress. Every scene she was in she was butchering her lines into some rant about how the issues are black and white, cut and dry, apples and oranges kinds of issues that there should be no debate. If Beast wasn’t there to chime in with the occasional reality check for her, she would have continued. I have to wonder what the writers had before Halle told them she wanted more dialogue. Vinnie Jones (Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Swordfish) is a good tough guy but as Juggernaut, he was lacking. The Juggernaut is an over the top, cartoon super villain, you need to play it up, Vinnie! Also, “I’m the Juggernaut, bitch!”? Bad Chapelle tribute or a blatant rip-off of Everyone else gave their parts what they needed: the teens were filled with angst, Professor Xavier was introspective and calm, Magneto was strong and passionate and Wolverine was a loner.

This was a special effects movie and I have to say it looked alright. There were some lighting issues, incongruities when it came to the superpowers and a few terrible jump/flying scenes throughout the film. There was a good Danger Room simulation, which was promised by Singer for X2 but he didn’t deliver it, with a Robotic Sentinel. The weather animations and battle scenes were average. I liked the Golden Gate bridge scenes particularly because they successfully mixed both live action and animated scenes with few obvious flaws.

X-men: The Last Stand deserves no more than 4/10 or one and a half out of five stars. The action was decent, but the dialogue was a complete failure. Even in an action movie you need to stop and talk. The effects were just average because it looked like they ran out of money during some scenes. This was the Godfather pt.III of the series and we can only hope for better in the spin-off movies.


Post a Comment

<< Home