***I'M SPOILING SHIT***
I ventured out today to try and help X-Men 3: The Last Stand get the biggest opening weekend of all time. (It came in a close fourth.)
I'm always reluctant to see blockbusters in theaters because people who see blockbuster movies tend to suck. I love the immersion of the whole theater experience, but I am not always willing to make the required social tradeoff. When surrounded by such great minds you must wonder things like,
Is this moron going to kick the back of seat?
Explain to the entire movie to his bimbo girlfriend?
This is why 40" HD TV's are giving the film industry such a run for their money.
When I heard that Bryan Singer was leaving the X franchise and that Brett Ratner, hack-extraordinaire, was taking over I figured it was pretty much a wrap for the X-Men. It wasn't the normal comic nerd alarmist reaction of "Magneto's cape is too dark!! Where is my Ovaltine?" but more along the lines of "Brett Ratner is a horrible director."
While he didn't make a better film than X-Men 2, he didn't fuck it up either.
The premise for the movie is that the government has a way to "cure" mutants by suppressing their mutant gene. Magneto and his Malcolm X ass ain't buying it. There was a "By Any Means Necessary" thrown in the movie in case people still don't see the Magneto/Professor X story as a parable for Malcolm X/MLK Jr.
When Magneto realizes that cure is a little more than voluntary, the war starts.
One of the reasons for the X-Men's enduring popularity is its outsider chic as well as the constant subtext of social relevance.
In this movie alone you have Beast, who was represented well, as the Colin Powell of an aggressive administration that undermined him, while allowing him to embarrass himself as a "diplomat."
You have a mutant-cure clinic being fire-bombed by Pyro, while scared mutants wait on line on one side and angry mutants protest on the other (Abortion clinic anyone?)
You have Magneto delivering Osama Bin Laden style videos after terrorist attacks, with the Fox News logo beneath.
There was something off with the rhythm of the film as well. This is where Brett Ratner's inability to direct a film comes in. Luckily the source material is strong enough that the film remains enjoyable, but there is a seesaw effect created by important characters dying early, followed by a lack of resonance.
Here is where I nerd out,
- First off, why was the movie under 2 hours? Big mistake.
- How do you introduce Colossus and Juggernaut in a movie and not have them destroy several miles of property fighting each other? A true waste. In fact there was no all-out, balls to the wall, one on one fight like the Wolverine/Lady Deathstrike fight of X2.
- Juggernaut was portrayed as a mutant, Juggernaut is powered by a mystical crystal. (Ahem, nerd.)
- How can you have three movies of Rogue without a true Gambit story?
- Why is Rogue still a whiny gothy teen? She sold out hard in the end and was just annoying the whole way through.
- This movie made it clear that too many of the X-Men in the movie are teenagers. Many of these characters work better as the full adults they are in the comic.
- Cyclops, yet again, was reduced to bitch mode. Cyclops is supposed to be a hateable uptight dick, but he is supposed to get shit done. Like young Kobe.
Yet he was passed out for all of X2 and got killed within 5 minutes of X3. A damn shame.
- With that said, tToo many X-Men died in this movie. I'm talking about important X-Men that should never die so soon. Granted they will (or should) all be resurrected in a cheesy way for X-Men 4. But so many early veteran deaths, with so many teenage characters made the X-Men seem a bit rickety.
- The Phoenix Saga is complicated even in the comic world, so I didn't entirely expect them to get it right here. But if she was supposed to be Magneto's ultra-powerful weapon, why did she sit out through 93% of the final fight?
- Halle Berry's bitching got her some more screen time as Storm and she did well with it, but I think it's time for Angela Bassett to run that role.
The hot shit was Storm fighting an altered Calisto. The chick playing Calisto, Dania Ramirez is sexy as all hell. She needs to be in more movies.
The third black mutant chick, (yes, three black women in a movie without Tyrese in it) was that dykey broad, Omahyra Mota, from Jay-Z's "Change Clothes" video. She is supposed to be hot in the modeling world, which means she is actually ugly.
- Wolverine, via Hugh Jackman, is the fucking man. He has some ridiculous one-liners that are really the staple of any decent summer movie.
The most incredible thing was that the Juggernaut actually said, "Do you know who I am? I'm the Juggernaut bitch!" based on the ridiculous Internet parody. Watch this stupid shit, if you've never seen it before.
The saddest thing was that some sad Internet blogger yelled that out the very second the Juggernaut came on the screen.
Not a good look for the Internet.
Keep in mind these mostly everything I've said are the nerd complaints of someone who has read way too many X-Men comics as a child.
There were some great action sequences in the movie and the fight scenes were pretty solid throughout, there just a million little things that were left out and I like to think that Bryan Singer probably would have gotten them all as well as balanced the mood of the film better.
Let's hope that Superman movie was worth leaving X-Men for.