Saturday, May 27, 2006


There are some very pissed-off fanboys out there dissin’ this third movie in the X franchise, X-Men: The Last Stand. You’re a comics geek and longtime reader of the X-Men books. So what’d you think?

Well, I’ve read X-Men comics off and on since 1966, back in the old Jack Kirby days. And I was delighted with Bryan Singer’s two films. I think Brett Ratner’s new movie is a brilliant follow-up to those, and it successfully closes the first trilogy in the franchise.

But a few fans are bitching that this adaptation of the Dark Phoenix Saga, the ultimate X-Men comic book story, is a watered down mess.

OK, we don’t see Jean Grey destroy entire planetary systems. We don’t see her go nova. But did any of us really expect to? Nah. Believe me, though — in this film, Jean Grey as Phoenix kicks ass big time. She’s unstoppable, for the most part. And she’s responsible for the deaths of two major players in the franchise. There’s nothing wishy-washy about Ratner’s Phoenix.

Major characters die?

Oh yeah. And just because someone still lives in the Marvel Comics continuity doesn’t mean they’re not expendable in the X-Men movie universe. I haven’t been this surprised and saddened since Josh Whedon killed off Wash. On top of that, the feds introduce a “cure” for mutants in The Last Stand. You may be shocked by who goes “human,” both voluntarily and involuntarily, in the movie.

Low points?

Not much comes to mind, actually. I was disappointed that the death of one character pretty much takes place off screen, and we’re given almost no time to grieve.

High points?

Halle Berry’s Storm plays a bigger role this time, kind of leading the charge against the “cure.” That’s very cool for us Halle fans. Hugh Jackman remains the perfect Logan, and I’m glad to see he’s still smoking cigars, since Wolverine dropped them in the comics. Kelsey Grammer may have at first seemed oddball casting for the Beast, but he’s spot on. Angel, one of the original classic Kirby X-Men, finally debuts, and he’s handled well. It’s nice to see Bobby finally move beyond the icy finger-pointing and really get Iceman’d up. The Danger Room is here and doesn’t disappoint. Even Sentinals are (kinda) in the movie. The mutant-on-mutant action is spectacular and clever, as usual. Big scale stuff. This is epic X-Men.

Any last comments?

Yeah. I saw The Last Stand in a sold-out, packed theater last night. Eighty percent of the crowd left during the credits. Twenty percent of us saw a brief scene after the credits that launches us into the second X-Men trilogy. Fer crissakes, don’t abandon your seat too early!


At 8:09 AM, Blogger Warren Bluhm said...

Haven't seen the movie yet, but I disagree that Kelsey Grammer seemed like an odd choice for the Beast. My first reaction was, "Of course!"


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