Let me preface my review by saying that I don’t know how the story’s “supposed” to go – I never read the comic books and I’ve only seen the other three X-Men movies once each. Going into this with no previous expectations, I liked it. I thought the opening war montage was really well done. I like Hugh Jackman and Liev Schreiber. Jackman has the wonderful ability to be charming one moment, and borderline terrifying the next. Liev Schreiber has scared me since Scream 2 – he has one of the best evil laughs in movies today – and he did a great job with the menacing side of Sabretooth. Unlike the other X-Men movies, this is not an ensemble cast, despite having excellent actors in the supporting roles – Dominic Monaghan, Will.I.Am and, my personal favorite, Ryan Reynolds.
A brief synopsis, for those who haven’t been trolling the internet for Wolverine trailers and news for months: Logan/Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) and his brother Victor/Sabretooth (Liev Schreiber) have been defending their country through numerous wars (more than any human would be capable of participating in), when Victor loses his temper and goes too far. That’s when Stryker (Danny Huston) steps in and invites them to join others of their kind and continue serving their country. Things go awry (as they often do), and Logan heads to Canada to live a normal life with a beautiful lady (Lynn Collins). Of course, life can never be truly normal for the mutants.
I thought the movie had great action scenes, a decent storyline and great acting. I did think there were a couple of odd scenes that didn’t need to happen or to be as long, but it didn’t really detract from the movie. Hugh Jackman’s intense training schedule for the movie paid off – he looks beyond buff, borderline scary. Ryan Reynolds steals every scene he’s in. I’d recommend it to any of my friends, and will probably pick it up when it comes out on Blu-ray. It wasn’t the best movie I’ve ever seen, but it certainly was a well-spent $10.
One note: As Mike wrote about earlier this week, stay after the credits to see the alternate endings. They’re not really “alternate” but more like “extra.” Don’t be fooled by the short piece that comes after a few of the credits have rolled. You have to stay until the very, very end if you want to see the “alternate” ending. As Mike said, it doesn’t alter the story of the movie, but opens the door for future movies.