Monday, May 11, 2009

Review of X-Men Origins: Wolverine

The fourth X-Men movie in the franchise, X-Men Origins: Wolverine stars Hugh Jackman again as the mutant Wolverine. As a prequel to the X-Men film trilogy, the movie showcase Wolverine’s life from 1845 to about ten years before he met the X- Men.

Now Hollywood has always taken liberties with the source material, usually I accept that but in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, things get taken a step further. So my warning is to enter the cinema with an open mind.

The movie start with young James Howlett seeing his father John killed by their groundskeeper Thomas Logan. Bone claws then slowly protruded out from the hands of young to kill Logan. With his dying breath, Logan tells James that he is his real father. James flee along with Logan's son, his half-brother Victor Creed with Victor vowing to always look out for his younger brother.

With their powerful healing abilities, the two fought for their country in various wars like the American Civil War and both World War I and II. However, during the Vietnam War, Victor kills his superior after he stops him from raping a young girl. James defends his brother and the two are charged with killing a superior officer and executed by a firing squad. After they revived, Major William Stryker offer the duo membership in Team X, an elite black ops strike force.

The brothers agree and participate in a raid in Africa to retrieve a meteorite. The meteor leads the team to a village and after the villagers refused to give the location of the meteorite, Stryker ordered a massacre of the villagers. James quits the group in disgust.

Six years afterward, James now go by the name of Logan, and is living the quiet life in Canada with his girlfriend Kayla Silverfox. Stryker locates Logan and warns him someone is killing members of the team. Shortly after, Victor turns up and murders Silverfox. Logan agreed to Stryker’s offer of an experiment to make him more powerful.

Logan’s skeletal system is reinforced with adamantium, an indestructible metal retrieved from the meteorite. Stryker then order the doctor to wipe Wolverine's memory, but Wolverine overhears and flees. The vengeful Logan then find out that Victor and Stryker are working together. From there, it’s just a story of Logan on the wild path.

The movie got some things right. Hugh Jackman's performance is great. As good as he was in the X-Men movies, Jackman is even better here. His intensity seems to carry over to the rest of the cast. Liev Schreiber’s Victor Creed was excellent. Victor was a man who can’t help but look out for his brother even when his younger brother has long become his own man.

The action scenes were also great. Everyone in the movie was either a soldier or an ex-soldier, so there were no long fights in the movie. Everything was quick and brutal with everyone going for the quick kill.

However, for me the minuses outweigh the pluses. The term “mindless action-flick” fits X-Men Origins: Wolverine to a T. Despite the numerous action sequences, there's not one that is truly memorable. As for emotional effects of the movie; well there’s none. I mean just minutes after he learned that Silverfox had betrayed him, Logan immediately decided to help her rescues her sister. That’s how the screenplay is. X-Men Origins: Wolverine is a well-done action flick but it’s also one that you are not going to remember an hour after the movie.

Like I said earlier, there were a lot of liberties taken with the source material so enter the cinema with an open mind. Especially if you are a fan of Deadpool. In the comics, Wade Wilson is a wisecracking mercenary that can’t shut up. Now I usually find all of Deadpool’s talking to be extremely annoying (much like Spiderman), but it is part of the character. In X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Deadpool doesn’t even have a mouth. Hopefully the upcoming Deadpool spin-off can show Wade Wilson with at least a mouth.

Overall, I will say that X-Men Origins: Wolverine is a disappointment.

1 comment:

Zen said...

My worse fears confirmed. Had a hunch hollywood will mess up the story and that was partly the reason why I skipped it. As a testament to my take on the X-Men movie franchise, none of them has made it to my home DVD collection. =P