Maybe I’m a bit burnt out? “X-Men: Days of Future Past” is a fun sequel–inventive, thoughtful and lively. By the time it’s all over, there have been a slew of exciting cameos–this must have been a gas to see in a packed theater. There’s a show-stopping action set piece, that’s scored by Jim Croce’s original “Time in a Bottle”, that is exhilarating for its freshness and audacity. Hey, it’s a good movie, and an impressive summer blockbuster achievement. But is it okay to confess that I was just a little bit disappointed? Certain reviews had led me to believe that this one was spectacular to a point that went beyond comic book franchise limitations. It’s not–it’s just a solid entry in the canon. That’s enough, isn’t it?
The time-bending aspect is neat. It even manages a kind of “Star Trek” feel. Hugh Jackman still brings that sardonic energy to his Logan/Wolverine role after seven times with the razor claws (although they’re a little bit adjusted for this episode). James McAvoy and Patrick Stewart get to display the old/young versions of Charles Xavier. Ditto Michael Fassbender/Ian McKellen as Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto. Jennifer Lawrence reprises as Raven/Mystique, because one billion-dollar franchise isn’t enough for the Oscar-winner. Halle Berry returns as Storm, because this blockbuster series is the only reason lately, its been worth it to pay to see this particular Oscar winner. She deserves better.
Peter Dinklage has a major role, which is super cool because, hey…he’s Peter effing Dinklage! The reality of his stardom gives me great hope for the progression of the industry. I don’t want to ruin the familiar faces appearances for you, but I will say that Mark Camacho portrays President Nixon (!). But still, it gets a bit clunky at times, and the time period juxtaposition doesn’t always sing. It sure is awesome to have Bryan Singer back in the driver’s seat though, after helming the first two entries over a decade ago. It’s the biggest moneymaker of the series too. It’s good stuff–just not great stuff. Maybe I’ll appreciate it more the second time around. Oh, and “X-Men: Apocalypse” arrives in 2016, with Singer in the driver’s seat again.