Friday, May 01, 2009
Darkmatters Review - X-Men Origins: Wolverine
X-Men Origins: Wolverine (12a)
Dir. Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, Rendition)
Reviewed by Matt Adcock
My name is Logan but most people call me ‘Wolverine’, I have regenerative healing powers, animal strength / senses and some lethal retractable claws in my hands … This is the story of my pre X-men days and I'm coming for blood, no code of conduct, no law!
Erm, actually I’ve been asked to keep the rating of my film to a family friendly level so when I say ‘I’m coming for blood’, it might be more accurate to say ‘I’m coming to fight and you won’t see any blood’.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine is the much hyped prequel to the X-Men movie and it strives to tell us everything you might want to know about the charismatic, hairy and sharp clawed Wolverine (nicely reprised role by Hugh Jackman). If you’re an X-Fan, chances are that you’ll lap up the back story into the relationship between Wolverine and his nastier brother Victor ‘Sabretooth’ Creed (Liev Schreiber).
Director Gavin ‘Tsotsi’ Hood follows in the X-Format successfully established first by Bryan Singer with X-Men and X2 and then not quite as well by Brett Ratner with X-Men: The Last Stand. There’s plenty of mutant super-powered action, some of which is completely cool – witnessing Wolverine taking on a military attack helicopter and two hummers is the stand out scene.
"You get the point?"
X-Fanboys are well catered using the ‘Weapon X’ storyline from the comics to introduce numerous mutants, many of whom you’ll already know if you’ve seen the later films. This is both a blessing and a curse because it allows you to play ‘spot who’s going to make it to the end credits’ as new characters who aren’t in the other X-Men films are much less likely to survive.
My pick of the new heroes however is magical card throwing ‘Gambit’ (Taylor Kitsch), he’d be a prime candidate for another X-Men: Origins movie, although word is that baddie Magneto is up next in the queue.
Unfortunately, X-Men Origins: Wolverine struggles to maintain excitement levels throughout, and whilst the action scenes are generally good stuff, the filler exposition between them clogs up the running time and is unlikely to win any new X-converts.
As a fan of comic book movies, I certainly enjoyed Wolverine’s tale but when the sight of Wolverine and Sabretooth fighting together to defeat the ‘Sylar from Heroes’ alike Weapon XI in the finale leaves you a bit cold, you know that this is a bit of a missed opportunity.
Arbitrary Darkmatters final rating of: ööööööö (7 - Not as cool as it should have been)
Darkmatters quick reference guide:
Spiritual Enlightenment 4
Not convinced? check out this review of the film over at ScreenJabber - best line:
"I can already hear the hardcore comic-book fanboys bitching and moaning, complaining about such-and-such character being underused and not given enough screen time. Well, you know what? Boo-f**king-hoo. "