X-Men: First Class

Rating: ★★★☆☆

Remember the X-Men movie right before this one? You know, the one about the origins of Wolverine? I don’t. My guess is that Hugh Jackman doesn’t either. If he does, I can almost be sure that he’s at least trying. “X-Men: First Class”, directed by Matthew Vaughn, is a prequel that shows us how the presence of mutants became known to humans, and how they responded to each other’s impressions. This can also be identified as a 130-minute apology to “Wolverine.”

The film’s first minutes are located in a nasty Nazi prison camp. The mother of young Eric is separated from him. He gets angry, and the steel gate between him and his mother seem to respond. (It’s moving by itself!) This odd occurrence is immediately noticed by Sebastian Shaw, who later succeeds in forcing the power out of Eric by killing his mother. Once again in anger, Eric causes all sorts of metals to hurl through the air. The wooden chairs sigh in relief.

The sequence described above features the finest moments of “X-Men: First Class.” It is there where we are introduced to the young man who will one day be famously recognzied as Magneto. Shortly, we recall familiar names such as Charles (Professor X) and Raven (Mystique), but not at first sight. There is a curious connection between the two. They seem to be really close to one another. So close, in fact, that we wonder about the lack of communication between them in the “previous” X-Men movies.

Meanwhile, Sebastian Shaw, who is apparently a mutant himself, has an ambitious attempt to… rule the world… by provoking a third worldwide war. Charles does not approve, so he forms an alliance with Eric and gathers the help of fellow mutants. I do not like these fellow mutants.

To name a few, there’s Angel. She has wings. But wait, she also spits tiny balls of fire. Now what? Then there’s Havoc, who shoots red laser beams. We are reminded of Cyclops, and that’s it. There’s also Banshee; he screams a lot. Banshee can release a shriek so loud and painful, it affects the audience. If I ask you about these characters, can you tell me who they are without mentioning their abilities? Among others I have no time to talk about, these mutants are needless distractions from the film’s greater aspects.

When we go back to the character of Eric, we wish that the movie spends more time with him. The strength of his presence and the depth of his story made me think of the high possibility that this could have been a movie about Magneto as much as the previous installment was about Wolverine. Yes, “Wolverine” was a failure, but perhaps an X-Men movie purely about one mutant depends on that one mutant. (Imagine a full-length feature about the origins about that darn screamer, Banshee.) I believe Eric is a good candidate for a spin-off, but I’m afraid that it’s too late for that.

What happens with the other mutants is of little concern, since we already know who’ll live by the end and which side they shall take. It’s rather evident that “X-Men: First Class” could have been better if it dedicated more of its minutes to the right people, but nonetheless, apology accepted.

Comments

  1. I think X-Men: First Class deserves a higher review than this. And not just because Michael Fassbender is my other boyfriend!

    When you think about it, most superhero movies are senseless (except Batman, because Nolan & Batman are brilliant). The way they made didn’t make the movie revolve around flashy effects and topless men. It had a story (which most action movies lack). It had a witty dialogue, it had great acting, it made sense! It was a smart action movie! How many times can you say that about an action movie?! Hardly!

    Anyway. I really liked it. :))

    • I don’t invest much value on the star rating. They’re silly and shallow. But, to try to explain myself here, Star Ratings are relative, not absolute. They are classified by Genre. So…

      If The Dark Knight deserves 5 Stars
      And if Spiderman 2 deserves 4.5 Stars
      And if X-2 deserves 4 Stars
      Then First Class gets about 3 or 3.5

      But! Star Ratings are also subjective! I know that you don’t like Spiderman 2, so what I previously said won’t really do anything. Ratings deserve a much more detailed discussion than this. Next time! :))

      As for the rest, I agree that the great things in First Class are really great, but the bad things about it are really bad as well. They kinda cancel each other out. Though a three-star rating is a passing grade. A 3.5 could also do, but I really hated the other mutants. haha

      Anyway, I liked it, too! 😀

      .

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X-Men: First Class