I wasn’t expecting a great deal from this film, especially after the mediocre review from Empire Magazine, but I have to admit to being pleasantly surprised. That’s not to say it was a great film – it certainly had its flaws.
As you’d expect from the title this film is all about Wolverine – why he is who is he, how he got to where he was in the first X-Men film, etc. A lot of the most interesting stuff – him and his equally indestructible brother fighting together through 4 wars (American Civil War, Two World Wars, Vietnam) is glossed over through the opening credits. His brother, who we know as Sabretooth, then turns bad. We don’t know why, after all this time and it’s not really explored. This puts a rift between the 2 brothers.
Obviously the X-Men, as we know them, haven’t been formed by this point, but there are lots of other “mutants” with abilities, with many of them being pretty exceptional. Agent Zero (AKA Maverick), for instance, with his gun skills is particularly good. And Gambit… well, it’s a been long time coming and it was great to see him. He, seriously, needs a film of his own.
Cyclops also makes an appearance as his younger self but he never meets (that he’s aware of) Wolverine, so that remains consistent with the earlier films. In fact, it’s consistency with those films was my main concern about this film – how would they do it? Or, rather, would they not? Well, from what I could tell, they kept the consistency and they flowed together nicely. Obviously, Sabretooth is in the first X-Men film and why Wolverine doesn’t recognise his brother is covered. Sadly, why Sabretooth doesn’t recognise Logan isn’t, although there’s blatantly a number of years between the end of this film and the start of the first X-Men film.
One tip – wait until the end of the credits. Yes, there’s an extra scene part way through the credits but there’s another right at the very end. Sadly, depending on the cinema, one of two possible scenes is shown – one is better than the other. If the one you see involves a bar then make sure you read Wikipedia on the other scene.
Still, it had it’s flaws – there wasn’t much of a plot and it seemed to just jerk from one set piece to another. And if you hadn’t seen past X-Men films you’d probably have been confused to hell about some of the storyline elements.
But, not as bad as I was expecting. Roll on Star Trek next week!