I think it’s time to give this franchise a break.
I’m not sure how I felt about the movie. I didn’t hate it, but it’s not like I felt floored by it either. Crafted by the same writer (Simon Kinberg) and director (Bryan Singer), its 2014 predecessor held up a hell of a lot more than this one did. Nothing to do with tapping into a large scale of mutants portrayed by a big cast setting off on a mammoth quest for respect and survival, but everything to do with a so-so, yet choppy story-line with continuity issues. (That’s of course if A.D.D. wasn’t acting up during DAYS OF FUTURE PAST)
So, the whole thing starts off right were DAYS’ post-credit scene ended. Back in the Mother Land, folks – cradle of civilization! Egypt. Where the first and most powerful mutant Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) amassed the powers of many other mutants, morphing him into an immortal, invincible being. Upon awakening after thousands of years, he’s taken back by the world as he finds it and recruits a team of powerful mutants known as The Four Horseman: Storm (Alexandra Shipp), Psylocke (Olivia Munn), Angel (Ben Hardy) and a disheartened, menacing Magneto (Michael Fassbender). Together, the objective is to cleanse mankind and create a new world order, over which he (of course) will reign supreme.
As the fate of Earth hangs in the balance, it should come to no surprise it’s up to the X-Men to save it. Raven (Jennifer Lawrence), Beast (Nicholas Hoult), and Professor X (James McAvoy) must get their shit together and lead a team of young X-Men (Quicksilver [Evan Peters], Cyclops [Tye Sheridan], Jean Grey [Sophie Turner and Nightcrawler [Kodi Smit-McPhee]) to stop their greatest nemesis, as well as complete human extinction.
There are aspects of this film I enjoyed. It looks and sounds beautiful, it’s got another cool Quicksilver solo (although it’s a retread), a cameo pertaining a fan favorite, and a nice retro setting that felt like I was watching CNN’s THE EIGHTIES. That was pleasing, fun, and somewhat engaging. However, for what seemed to be a battle of epic proportions, it didn’t really feel “apocalyptic.” Pardon the pun. A wee bit disjointed with its constant jumpy story, it was like having Nightcrawler’s POV from start to finish. Which didn’t help much and did nothing but expose a poor arc for a bunch of kids who land at a school for the gifted one day, then fighting somewhat flawlessly days later.
Suffering the effects of AGE OF ULTRON, its titled villain also has a slow, droning burn of a build-up and really didn’t do shit but bark and bark without any serious bite. Did Apocalypse look and sound menacing? Sure. But, so did Ultron. And guess what? It was a waste of a mutant that, in turn, is capable of so much malicious intent.
Jumble it all up and X-MEN: APOCALYPSE is nothing more than a dense, complicated flick that’s cool to watch, but nothing to write home about.
Grade: C+ / Genre: Sequel, Sci-Fi, Action-Adventure / Rated: PG-13 / Run Time: 2:20
Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender
Directed by: Bryan Singer