X-men Origins : Wolverine

This review might be a little biased. In the interests of full disclosure, I WAS wearing a pretty bitchin’ Gambit costume and sitting next to a hot girl in a pretty bitchin’ Rogue costume while watching the new X-Men movie. There, that’s fully disclosed… pictures on facebook soon LOLZ!!

So how was the movie? It was okay. Nowhere near as bad as some of the early buzz would imply. It’s also not as bad as X3… and I fucking stand by that. Maybe it’s that my expectations were low since the initial reports from people who viewed the leaked version online, but I was able to enjoy the movie for what it was.

Wolverine seems to take the idea that it’s a prequel pretty seriously in some ways, but not in others. At the end of the movie, they go out of their way to give Wolverine amnesia to explain why he doesn’t know this story in the other films, but it only raises all kinds of other problems with continuity. One is Stryker, who was pretty cool in origins and pretty cool in x2, but they are NOTHING LIKE ONE ANOTHER. The actors are different, the motivations are different, even the goddamn accent is different. Also, he still has his memory… so… 

Another one is Cyclops. There’s a kid version of Cyclops in this movie, but I’m not sure why he’s there. It makes you wonder if he’s supposed to be pushing 50 by the time he’s working for Professor X. It also makes you wonder why HE doesn’t remember Wolverine. Of course, Sabretooth is also completely different between Origins and X1, though he’s way more developed in Origins. 

The moral of the story? They should have either tried harder to fit the movies together or they should have pulled a true comic book move and just declared them to be in different continuities.

So what was good? Well it had some fun action sequences and a pretty decent story. The action sequences are very “comic booky”, if that makes sense. That sounds kind of stupid to take time to say, but there’s a distinctly comic book feel to them that isn’t present in most comic comic book movies. One example is when Wolverine blocks a laser beam from Weapon XI by crossing his claws and thrusting his chest out. Another good one is when Ryan Reynolds blocks hundreds of bullets from automatic weapons by flailing two samurai swords around. I found that some of these worked and others didn’t… but the combat scenes feel more like the source material than many other comic book movies, for better or for worse.

I was happy to see Gambit on screen, but some people had objections. I don’t know a whole lot about Deadpool, but I understand fans of the character are pretty angry about his portrayal in the movie. Oh and one other observation that I don’t know where to put: Origins spends some time in the beginning setting up this kind of dark side of the force feeling with Wolverine needing to fight his urge to “give in to the beast” like Sabretooth so clearly does. They drop this idea pretty quickly, but I was glad they did.

Watchmen, Iron Man, and The Dark Knight have all really raised the bar for comic book movies. I know I spent the whole post here pointing out problems in the movie, but I somehow managed to have some fun with it. People who were fans of the other x-men movies or the comics should totally check out Wolverine, but otherwise you should probably wait for video.

I might just be a fanboy.


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May 2009
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