"Logan," the latest film in 20th Century Fox's "X-Men" film series, gives us Hugh Jackman's final performance as the titular character, having been involved in the series since the original superhero movie "X-Men."
Going into the theater, I will admit to having some pre-show bias, being a fan of the series and having seen nearly every entry in the series in the theater and owning copies of all but one film on iTunes (for those wondering, that one film is "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," but we ignore that one). Be that as it may, I decided to give my best attempt to provide an objective, unbiased and spoiler-free review for "Logan."
It did not feel like a superhero movie. It started off with a sci-fi/western feel and then moved into a classic explosion-action sort of motif. This transition was executed superbly with the film's minimalistic opening credits, lifelike special effects, and diverse location settings. While the R rating is clearly warranted with the film's language and gore, there is still enough room for warm-hearted family moments and a splash of humor, including Easter eggs referencing different eras of the source material's history.
Comic book fans will know going in that the movie is loosely based on the "Old Man Logan" storyline, you do not really need to be a comic book reader to follow "Logan." To the layman, this film is about two grumpy old men, trying to help a little girl with moxie escape some shady characters to a safe haven. A simple plot outline, but with the right story and the right actors, you can get quite the popcorn flick. And this film has plenty of talented actors, both new and old (pun intended).
Both Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart's characters have drastically aged since their debuts. But they have certainly aged well with their believable portrayals of seasoned and tired mutant heroes, and in Jackman's case still having the capacity to be as intimidating and spry as ever. With the only returning actors being Jackman and Stewart, one should take note of the fresh faces to the "X-Men" film series, notably Dafne Keen's Laura/X-23. People need to learn this young actress's name and face now; this movie goer sees quite the lucrative career ahead of her as a long-awaited character as synonymous as Hugh Jackman is to his.
My grievances with the film mainly lie with the antagonists to the story, namely Transigen and Boyd Holbrook's character Donald Pierce. Now to be clear, I am not bashing Holbrook's performance. He did his part well, especially in the early acts of the movie, but the whole "secret militant organization seeking their human weapon at all costs" schtick has been done so many times that I found myself wanting more screen-time with the protagonists for more fresh themes to the series.
All in all, "Logan" is a film that promises a fantastic send-off for Hugh Jackman's character and it most certainly delivers. With a clever mix of sci-fi special effects, western settings, high octane action sequences, and even some humorous and heartfelt family themes, "Logan" is definitely worth holding in a 32-ounce Mr. Pibb for over two hours, if you can get over the somewhat bland Transigen.
Dir. James Mangold. Logan. 20th Century Fox: 2017. Film.