Sunday, May 3, 2009

'X-Men Origins: Wolverine' - POPped Review


**SPOILER ALERT**
If you have not seen this and don't want to know what happens..too bad.

Let's see, where to begin.  'X-Men Origins: Wolverine' is a fun ride to "meh."  I wouldn't say that I was as excited to see this as I was for the first 2 X-Men films, but I like the character, I like Hugh and I'm always ready for a good blockbuster movie.  I expected this movie to deliver on that, however what it ended being was 'X-Men Origins: Action Film Cliche's'.  Let's start off with the movie's main character.  I am ready to suspend my dis-belief for a comic book movie. No problem.  He can heal quickly, okay..I'm with ya'.  No problem.  The movie starts off promising using bits from the 'Wolverine Origins' story line, and with one of the best opening credits by showing the different time periods that he has lived through and wars he's fought in. But apparently this mutant power picked early 40's to be the year that he would age to and stay there....forever.  This is along with his brother Victor (Sabertooth).    

Through a series of events, Logan leaves his military team along with his brother after they have been slaughtering people while searching for special pieces of meteor.  We catch up with Logan several years later as he's now living in a log cabin on a mountain peak with his girlfriend who is surprisingly accepting of his mutant anger and temper.  Almost like the woman on 'COPS' who just puts up with her boyfriends drug use.  Their romance starts it down the road of cheesiness.  By this point, we really haven't seen ANY signs of the wild man that he is supposed to have been.  Sure we see him in a couple of fights, he wakes up screaming and getting all stabby from a dream (again) but that wild dude is no where to be seen.  This streak is only shown in Sabertooth who shows up to start killing off mutants and Wolverine's girl.  This leads to the ever original shot of him holding her in his arms while he screams up at the sky in anger as the camera pulls away.  

Well now his old boss shows up and wants to help him hunt him down, blah blah blah... he volunteers to an experiment where we see the adamantium added to his body.  I thought this would lead to him going nuts and we would finally see the animal in him come out.  Nope.  This leads to a comical scene of him running across a farm naked.  Seriously?  As he's now hunted down we get more action cliches as he pulls a wheelie on a motorcycle out of the barn as it explodes.  This leads to some really bad CGI of him on the motorcycle and being tossed onto a helicopter from a Humvee that's exploding (because that's what happens).  And then walking slowly away from the helicopter as it also explodes behind him.  As another member of our POP Patrol told me at dinner last night, "I'm surprised he didn't flick his lit cigar into the fuel to make it blow up."    

We also get introduced to other mutants (Gambit, Emma Frost, Cyclops.. to name a few) who are then quickly shuffled off or killed so that Wuss-verine can get back to being funny and not bad ass.  Of course, this is a movie of cliche's so Sabertooth and Wolverine do get into a fight, but they are brothers too so they end up having to team up to fight Deadpool.  At the end of this we do see how Wolverine loses his memories, but not before he carries the body of girlfriend...again, into the sunset.  Good lord.  Really?  I myself was ready to shoot him in the head with an adimantium bullet just to tell him to tell them to stop it.  However it does lead to a very nice un-credited cameo that made me smile.

So what's the verdict here?  This is a mediocre blockbuster at best.  I had hopped for more action fun, but it just wasn't there.  Even the normal action eye candy just didn't do it.  I don't mind CG effects, but when it's so bad that you have to say, "Really?"  Well that's just not good for anyone.  I get that the big rage is to use wire work in your fights, and I'll give you that.  But here it seemed like it was used just for the sake of saying they used it.  It was bad and way too obvious.  It seemed like a high school production excited that they got to use a new toy.  Every time it seemed that this movie was about to kick into high gear, it backed off.  Every time we got a showdown between Wolverine and Sabertooth, it just didn't progress.  They were the ones that we were led the entire movie to believe needed to duke it out, but they ended up fighting someone together after their last brief fight.  I know that a comic movie will always borrow from different story lines, and I'm not a purist so that's fine.  But when you have a character who's past is about nothing but rage in every story line, show it.  Even with the cliche of avenging his girlfriends death, that should drive him into more than what we saw.  They took one of the most angry characters in comics and sent him to sensitivity training.  So I say, if you have not seen it and are planning on it..catch a matinee.  On my POParitaville scale of "Who Made This S***" to "I'M SEEING IT TWO MORE TIMES TODAY AND TOMORROW!", it's gets a "Meh."          

Review POPped by Jungle Jesse

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