Friday, May 26, 2006

X-men 3, the review

B and I left work early so we could catch the 5pm show of "X-men III: The Last Stand" with K. I had read a brief uncomplimentary review of the movie last night. Did the review have merrit?

OK. What do I want from an X-men movie? I want cool action. I want conflict. I want a believeable plot. What do I not expect from an X-men movie? I do not expect TONS of character development. I do not expect all loose ends to be tied up. I do not expect an easy happy ending. If you have read the comics you have expectations similar to my own. I don't know if you want the same thing out of the movies, but you know what to expect.

Do critics want all loose ends tied up? Do they want complex characters with reasonable development? Do they want full resolution when they walk out of the theater? Sure they do.

Was I satisfied with X-men 3? Well... No, darn it, I want more, More... MORE! I enjoyed it. I am unhappy where we left things. I want another installment.

Is it 'true' to the comics? Um ... well ... not really. Do I care? NOPE! It was a fun ride.

Could it have been better? Probably. Do I care? NOPE!

There are two more X-men(-ish) movies in the pipeline. "Wolverine" and "Magneto". Neither will resolve any of the issues left lying on the table this go around. I doubt that they'll actually be able to make an X-men 4 though. Halle Berry has already said she's not interested. (Though everyone's gotta pay the rent, right? And Catwoman and Gothika did not do well.) And a couple of other major characters were seemingly killed off. (Though, there are ALWAYS ways around that.) The only way they could make an X-men 4 is if this one did reasonably well in the theater. My showing was pretty full. However, the critics did slam it pretty well before opening day, so it's future is dim.

I am already mentally signed up for "Magneto" and "Wolverine". If Marvel & Co. want to do any more X-men related movies of ANY KIND I am so there. Are you listening, guys? I've got $10 in my hand for each and every one of this franchise you are willing to pursue. Hopefully, there are enough idiots out there like me to keep the feed going.


SZapolsky said...

So, I guess it tells me something that all my best friends have strongly felt reviews of this movie on thier blogs this weekend.

Kitten Herder said...

Only if all the comments are like mine! (grin)

Rusty said...

What do I want in an X-men movie? More Mystique! (insert double entendre here)

changejunkie said...

I saw it last night. I really enjoyed it, but... Why muck with the X-Men story lines? it is such strong story-telling in the first place (said the huge X-Men comicbook fan!). Still, nice to see Beast kick ass. And the movie really lets the power of the mutants, and what that means, come through. Watching Magneto move that bridge was chilling.

Did anyone else feel they were heavy-handed with the Martin Luther King/Malcolm X imagery?

Kitten Herder said...

On the Malcom X thing: I was a bit jarred by Mystique's "slave name" comment. And the MLK thing must have been subtle enough for my muffled sensibilities since it didn't register.

Anonymous said...

The 1st wknd b.o. - u. the indicator of sequel potential - was record-setting, so despite Arad's departure, more X-men films seem likely.

I did not think that the Malcolm X - not so much the "slave name" reference but the "any means necessary" quote - and Dr. King imagery were heavy-handed. Popular culture long has made them two of the most recognizable and quotable figures of the American Civil Rights Movement. For a mainstream film, they are the logical "go-to" quote sources. (Would someone in Peoria recognized an Evers quote?)

The Claremont-era X-men in particular had been redolent with racial, sexual, and orientation metaphors - as well as the usual "outsider" themes that the typical comic book reading demographic enjoys. Referring to the themes in a non-subtle manner is apt in a mainstream film, IMO.

As for the story, I was whelmed. The difference in film direction (i.e., Ratner vs. Singer) was noticeable, and a more action-oriented, rather than thoughtful (a la shyamalan's standard-setting "Unbreakable") movie(flick instead of film, Robin "grin") is the result. The b.o. will keep the series alive and the story definitely avoided the hat trick trap of the earlier "Superman" and "Batman" second sequel failures, but I would have preferred more exposition-laden dialogue over the admittedly amazing set pieces....

Kitten Herder said...

Duh. Yup, I totally forgot about the "by any means necessary" quote.

I am hoping that the box office does drive them to another iteration.

I did not stay for the post-credits teaser. From the description it definitely made for a fertile field for another movie (along with the teaser they gave JUST before the credits). Also, there was someone's death that was alluded to, though not seen. So, I am ever hopeful on that front as well (though that one was never one of my favorite characters).