REVIEW — “X-Men: Days of Future Past”
“X-Men: Days of Future Past” is an incredibly ambitious film. With a storyline that weaves together the casts from two different franchises, and spanning multiple timelines, it’s an amazing feat that what emerges is not only coherent, but the best X-men film to date.
Brian Singer returns to the series for the first time since X2. It’s obvious that he has a passion for the cinematic world he helped create in the first two movies, as his latest Xmen outing is very faithful to his original vision. (A vision many said was wrecked when Brett Ratner replaced him as director for X3) The film opens in the near future with a very dark homage to The Terminator, complete with skull littered ground and giant machines hunting all of mankind. The story wastes no time in plunging us into the action and soon Wolverine’s consciousness (Hugh Jackman) has been sent back in time to his younger body in an attempt to prevent this timeline where mutants have been hunted to extinction. To do this he must reunite Professor X (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and derail the events that led to the creation of the robotic Sentinels that hunt mutants. As fate would have it, this is no easy task, and many actions they take lead to an even darker future.
For a comic flick, this movie is virtually flawless. Thanks to an assortment of very short flashbacks, it’s not necessary for the audience to be intimately familiar with the various Xmen movies. But, those that are fans of the series are in for a treat, as there are innumerous references to events and characters throughout the series. There are even fun little nods to fans of the comics, particularly an offhand joke about Quicksilver’s (Evan Peters) father. Many feared that the Quicksilver character was a last minute add-on, but in fact his scenes are integral to the plot, and some of the most fun ones in the movie. As we’ve seen in the rest of the X-Films, the cast is phenomenal. Everyone is in top form in this outing, particularly Hugh Jackman. The ladies in the audience will appreciate the glimpse we get of his physical form as well. Simon Kinberg’s screenplay is surprisingly tight. The dialogue is relatively realistic and concise. There are also a number of surprisingly emotional moments, especially when exploring the tumultuous relationship between the Professor and Magneto. As dark and as violent as the film gets at times, it never turns it’s back on fun. Once Wolverine is sent back to the 70s, it becomes a great little period film with a number of humors historic references.
Singer has achieved an amazing feat with this movie: Tieing in multiple story lines, multiple actors, multiple spin-off films, and even (possibly?) completely changing the events we have seen in other movies, yet still coming out with a coherent & emotionally engaging story. A must-see, this is one of the best comic book films of the year.
5 out of 5 stars