X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)


I’m conflicted. I can’t quite decide how X-Men: Apocalypse played out for me. It was okay. That is, entertaining enough for the price of a matinee ticket. Yet at the same time, I’m struggling to find anything good to say about it. In fact, I’m having trouble connecting with this franchise in general.

Part of the problem is the team. I just don’t care about the characters they have chosen to focus on. The core, experienced team at this point is Xavier, Beast, and Mystique. Really? And while I like the fact that more and more movies are daring to put a woman as the lead, Mystique. Really? I know they have to use the heroes they’ve set up in past films, but why didn’t they start with stronger characters?

Then you’ve got the students: Cyclops, Jean Grey, and Nightcrawler. There are others, but they are just background, for possible use later. I just couldn’t care less about Cyclops. Jean Grey will be interesting later. Which leaves everything on Nightcrawler’s shoulders. And Nightcrawler was cool but we didn’t get much of him. The one character that did resonate with me was Quicksilver. Who doesn’t love the smart-ass, comic relief. Sadly, like Nightcrawler, he was tacked on.

Speaking of tacked on, Bryan Singer, or the producers, obviously knew that the characters in X-Men: Apocalypse are weak. So, they brought in Wolverine as Weapon X in order to have an A-list character the audience would actually want to see.

Then there are the bad guys: Angel, Storm, Psylocke, and Magneto.

Wait! Aren’t they the good guys? Yes and no. In buying the rights to the movies Sony must have free reign to play with the characters, which is fine. There is no fixed canon. The comics themselves have changed wildly up over the years. The issue for me is Angel, Storm, and Psylocke are interesting characters. By relegating them to the bad guys they lost out on development and screen time, which would have made this a much more interesting film. Yes, they are setting them up for more interaction in future movies, but why squander something good? Why hold back? Pump up all your good stuff and let it shine.

Then there are the actors. I think they are all perfectly good. I just don’t think they fit the roles. The problem is their age. Every movie has younger and younger actors. It is really hard to swallow. I understand that part of it is because Sony wants to have actors who are young enough to play the parts for many years to come, like Huge Jackman has. Mostly, though, it’s the image thing. The casting director has to place pretty young things in all the roles. Patrick Stewart can pull off the experience and leadership gravitas Xavier needs. James McAvoy, at 36, is far too young to play Xavier.

The whole time I felt like I was watching X-Men Babies.

With everyone complaining about Hollywood white washing roles, why is no one mentioning age, or body type? The world’s population is not perpetually in it’s 20s, with 6 pack abs and shiny white teeth.

By far, the worst part of X-Men: Apocalypse is the dialogue. My eyes got a workout rolling around in my head so much. The scene that took its toll was Magneto’s moving “Whyyyyyyyyyyyy!” By moving I mean bowel moving. Magneto pulls a Tommy Wiseau “You’re killing me, Lisa!” Michael Fassbender is a great actor, but even he could not help but Shattered the hell out of that tripe.

Tearing Me Apart

All said and done the best I can say is it could have been better. This is what we got. At least Quicksilver was entertaining, though he wasn’t fast enough to escape the mess that was this film. Oh well. They’ll made enough money to justify making another one. Maybe they’ll get it next time.

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