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Eric’s Guide Through the ‘X-Men’ Series

Eric’s Guide Through the ‘X-Men’ Series

6.) The Wolverine


You know years ago a film as bad as “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” would have certainly killed off a franchise. Still the “X-Men” series continued on and Hugh Jackman had enough goodwill to make another solo Wolverine film. This time getting James Mangold to direct. I’ve enjoyed his other films like “Walk the Line” and the “3:10 To Yuma” remake. He seemed to be a really good fit for this character. It’s based on Wolverine’s most famous comic story referred to as the Japan arc. However, the film really just takes the very basic structure. Still it was nice to see Wolverine be given a much better film. It may be PG-13, but it’s a much more brutal film. My main takeaway from the film is that it is a case of a movie climaxing too early. The scene of Wolverine getting his healing factor back and then it turning into a sword fight with Mariko’s father is so well-done in every aspect that you don’t care that there’s still the actual villain to take care of. There are still good moments after this fight, but the film never gets this good again. Now the original director was planned to be Darren Aronofsky. He left the project, but I highly suspect the ending is from his script. They not only turned the Silver Samurai into a mech, (not at all what he is in the comics) but specifically they make the grandfather evil and a head in a robot body trying to steal Wolverine’s healing factor to live forever. If that sounds a little goofy well it is and it breaks the tone of the film up to this point.
Eric’s advice: When it works it’s one of the best, when it doesn’t it really fumbles.

7.) X-Men: Days of Future Past


I know a lot of people love Matthew Vaughn and find Bryan Singer to be okay at best. Still in my opinion All the best films up until this point had been directed by Singer so I was eager to see him return. Loosely adapting one of the most famous “X-Men” stories ever not only did he come back, but so did practically all of the old cast. Some major, some minor, but it was so cool to see them all plus the new characters. A lot of people complain about Wolverine once again being the main character, but really he’s just the POV character they still keep this as Charles and Mystique’s story. We have Peter Dinklage as Trask and while he doesn’t have many opportunities to shine he’s very good as always and I really like how the film never makes mention of his height. All of my complaints are very minor like as a comic fan there’s no way Mystique would have not killed Nixon given the chance, she’s pretty evil. Also, seeing Wolverine at least have a little bit of a fight with Magneto. Once again he easily gets defeated by him even though he only has the bone claws. And other flaws (like the lack of Rogue) are fixed with the director’s cut. In addition to the nostalgia of seeing these actors back again the film just seems to really get “X-Men.” I always thought of the central theme of “X-Men” as being hope for the future. Yes the world is falling apart and is very dark, but the “X-Men” do what they do out of a sense of hope and making a better tomorrow. No where is this better exemplified than in the scene of young and old Xavier meeting. Just that scene along makes this film the “X-Men” film I always wanted.
Eric’s advice: My favorite film of this series!

8.) Deadpool


There’s not much to say about this film. I’ve been racking my brains to think of something, but there’s not much. It’s quite simply a very well-told, fun action flick. I didn’t know much about Deadpool going into this. I knew him as an obscure Wolverine villain. Needless to say his introduction in “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” didn’t impress me. Still like the rest of internet fandom I learned more about him and from what I can tell this film really captured him well. Ryan Reynolds fits as well into the role as Hugh Jackman did for Wolverine. It was also the first time a film I’ve seen that got the white eyes look of the comics down perfectly. Such a simple detail that took such a long time to get right. It’s also the first time Colossus looks completely comic accurate. He’s looked OK in other films, but they got the size and lines down right finally. Fun fact: the film’s budget got slashed at the last-minute so a lot of things like Deadpool “forgetting” his guns so they could keep the fights under control. Just a great example of working with what you have and getting what’s really needed.
Eric’s advice: Even if you don’t normally care for this sort of film I’d still recommend this for a solid comedy action flick.

9.) X-Men: Apocalypse


So when the “X-Men” movies were new and coming out I imagined that since the first film had Magneto, the second film would have Mr Sinister (still waiting on him BTW) and then the big trilogy ender would have to be Apocalypse. As seen earlier on this list, that’s not what happened. Apocalypse in the comics presents an interesting challenge. He is immortal and best the heroes can do is just foil his plans and force him to retreat, but he’ll eventually return. Needless to say I was really looking forward to this villain to finally come to the big screen. This may be going a bit against everyone else, but personally I liked his costume. The very Egyptian style was cool and the make-up invoked the look from the comics enough for me to accept it. I even like the take on the character in making him into an almost anti-Xavier with how he interacts/recruits his horsemen. There were a number of things I liked. I liked the look of the costumes, a lot of Magneto’s turmoil still worked, the new Nightcrawler was great. However, for everything I liked there was a ton of things I really didn’t. The Wolverine cameo was great example of my conflicting feelings. On the one hand it was a shameless excuse to get Hugh Jackman in one more time and once again Stryker is forced into a story. On the other hand, his attack that lasts only a few seconds was way bloodier and badass than the ENTIRE “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” and as a comic fan I never expected to see the costume from the Weapon X story to ever make it into a live-action film. So many of the film’s fumbles were maddening in how a director with this much experience in “X-Men” movies made such silly decisions. Angel is turned evil and I’m pretty sure is killed before he could ever become the hero he is in the comics or even the previous continuity. The origin of Xavier’s bald head being the biggest “why did we need a prequel to explain this?” But the biggest fumble was this amazing yet simple arc they had set up with Magneto and Quicksilver that they didn’t take advantage because… I still don’t know why and it makes Magneto’s last-minute turn back to good really come out of nowhere.
Eric’s advice: I promise I wanted to like this but it just seemed to repeat a lot of the same mistakes of ‘Last Stand.’

10.) Logan


I don’t like Mark Millar. His writing style seems to be shock and gore for the sake of gore to appear mature. “Old Man Logan” is no exception so I wasn’t looking forward to an adaptation of this story. Still the trailers looked fantastic and the reviews were even better. Much like “Wonder Woman,” for the first 2 3rds it was about as perfect as I could have reasonably expected. But then something happens and the rest of the film goes a bit wonky. In this film’s case it would be once the evil clone of Wolverine shows up that my issues with the film come into play. From that point on the film just doesn’t have the same emotional impact that had been building up to then. Maybe it’s the fact he kills Patrick Stewart as Xavier. Especially during one of his best moments of acting (which needless to say is incredibly high praise for him). Now I am an optimist so I’ll admit the idea that this is the eventual end of the mutants’ storyline is troubling to me even if there is a renewed sense of hope at the end. It’s best for me to see this as an alternative story. I’m not a fan of X-23 from the comics. In general not a fan of gender flipped clones in fiction, but I will admit I did find their reinterpretation of Laura interesting. Maybe it’s how young they made her, Wolverine always works great against a younger female. I remember when I saw this, I noticed a real young kid with his parents a few seats down. He seemed way too little for this film, but that’s on his parents. As I left the theater I saw him again in the lobby completely bawling his eyes out. Good luck with the years of therapy you no doubt just created with your kid!
Eric’s advice: Can see why so many love this, I still have issues. Still a fantastic film.

What do you think? Which ‘X-Men’ film is your favorite?

About The Author


Eric grew up with a simple childhood. At age 11 a six fingered man murdered his father in front of his eyes, while his mother died defending him from an attack from a sharptooth, then an evil toon dropped a piano from 15 stories onto his brother's head and then on top of all of that while on the job he was brutally shot up and left for dead but was rebuilt as a robotic cop to get his revenge. ...Oooorr maybe he just watched a lot of movies growing up and got really into them. From a young age Eric realized learning things like science, math, people's names etc. took some real effort but could easily remember practically all the dialog/plot details from a random movie he watched on tv years ago. He knew from a young age that he wanted to make movies and never strayed from that. Going to college to get an education in film production and working on movie sets whenever it can be fit into his schedule. Get him into a room full of people he doesn't know and over time you may eventually get him to open up but just mention some movies and he'll talk for hours, never afraid to (respectfully) argue with fellow movie nerds. Now he puts that love and energy toward writing for

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