Thursday, 11 June 2009

Two elements make this movie really work

To tell you the truth I'm pretty surprised by all the negative reviews I've been reading on the IMDb and elsewhere on the net (AICN for example). I thought X-Men 1 and 2 came close to being masterpieces and that X-Men 3 sucked big time. The Wolverine movie however is well made, exciting and surprisingly effective. But that's an opinion from somebody who doesn't know anything about the comics. To me Wolverine is mainly a movie hero and maybe that can make a big difference.

Two elements make this movie really work. Liev Schreiber - a very underestimated actor - does a great job as Wolverine's brother Victor/Sabretooth. It's their love/hate relationship that is the main subject in this story and that really keeps it interesting. In the first minutes of the movie this is well established. The opening credits are really beautiful.

Second: the story. I really love the story. It has romance, betrayal, vengeance, action, a touch of immortality... All the good elements are there in the right doses.

Yes, I really love this movie. I hope to see more of Hugh Jackman as Wolverine in the future, because there are a lot more adventures he can and should have. Maybe director Gavin Hood can repair some of the damage that Brett Ratner did with a X-Men 3. Because an X-Men 4 - with hopefully Josh Halloway as Gambit - would be a great spectacle indeed.

There's only one big thing that really puzzled me. So the Liev Schreiber character is actually the same Sabretooth we see in X-Men 1? Because the two characters really don't seem the same in the two movies. Everything they have "experienced together in the past" (in the prequel) seems forgotten in X-Men 1 (when they only fight each other).

Anyway, go see this!

Friday, 8 May 2009

X-Men Origins: Wolverine

In 1845, North-Western Territory, British North the united states, young James Howlett (Troye Sivan) sees his brother John Howlett (Peter O'Brien) killed by Victor Creed's father, Thomas Logan (Aaron Jeffery). In an act of vengeance, James kills the elder Logan using his bone claws which protrude from his hands. With his dying breath, Logan tells James that they is also his son. James and Victor (Michael-James Olsen) then run away. In the following years, adult brothers James (Hugh Jackman) and Victor (Liev Schreiber) are seen fighting together throughout the American Civil War, World War I, World War II, and finally the Vietnam War, their regenerative powers keep them from being killed in the battlefield.

James is forced to act as a check on Victor's ever-increasing anger and ferocity. In Vietnam, Victor kills a superior officer after being stopped from raping a girl, and James and Victor are sentenced to death by firing squad, though their three of a kind regenerative abilities keep them alive. William Stryker (Danny Huston) approaches the one mutants and offers them membership in Team X, his elite group of mutants. The team consists of mutants Fred Dukes (Kevin Durand), who's super-strong and invulnerable, John Wraith (, who can teleport, Chris Bradley (Dominic Monaghan), who can control electricity with his mind, expert marksman Agent Zero (Daniel Henney) and mercenary Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds). The brothers join the group, and are sent to the team's first mission: Invade a diamond traffic operation headquarters to retrieve a meteorite used by the leader of the dealers as a paperweight in Lagos, Nigeria. After retrieving the meteorite, Stryker and the team interogate nearby village people to see if there's any other meteorites. James is disgusted by the murders committed by his teammates and abandons the group. Six years afterward, James - now going by his last name, Logan - is a lumberjack living with his missus Kayla Silverfox (Lynn Collins). Meanwhile, Victor hunts down and murders Bradley, mentioning that Wade is already dead. Stryker locates Logan, and claims that anyone is out to kill members of the now-disbanded team. Stryker asks Logan for help, but is refused. soon after, Silverfox is murdered by Victor. Wolverine hunts down his half-brother, but is easily defeated. Stryker three time again asks Logan for help, and they agrees. Stryker then has Logan's skeletal method reinforced with adamantium, a virtually indestructible metal retrieved from the meteorite found by Team X. Before the procedure, Logan asks for his new dog tags to say "Wolverine", based on a story that Kayla had told him. After the procedure, Stryker orders Wolverine's memory to be erased, but Wolverine overhears this and flees. Stryker orders Agent Zero to hunt him and take his head off. An elderly couple Travis (Max Cullen) and Heather Hudson (Julia Blake) sees Wolverine in their barn and provide him a home until the next morning, only to be shot dead by Zero. Wolverine takes out several HMMWV, a helicopter and Zero himself, then goes to Las Vegas. Wolverine locates former associates John Wraith and Fred Dukes (who is now massively obese from a guilt-driven eating disorder), seeking to learn the location of Stryker's new laboratory. Wolverine learns the disbanded team had been capturing mutants for Stryker. three of them, Remy LeBeau (Taylor Kitsch), also known as Gambit, had escaped the island and knew the location. Dukes also tells him that Victor is actually working for Stryker, capturing and killing mutants for him. Meanwhile, Stryker captures a teenage Scott Summers with Victor's aid. Wolverine and Wraith locate Gambit in a New Orleans bar. Wolverine talks to Gambit while Wraith keeps watching outside, but Gambit suspects Wolverine was sent to recapture him and, using his ability to charge objects with kinetic energy, throws several playing cards at Wolverine that sends him flying through a wall. Outside, they sees Victor has killed Wraith and taken a sample of his blood. Wolverine fights Victor, only to be interrupted by Gambit. Victor escapes, and after a brief struggle, Gambit agrees to take Wolverine to the mutant prison on Three Mile Island. three time there, Wolverine confronts Stryker and learns Silverfox is still alive, having faked her death with hydrochlorothiazide. they was keeping track of the mutant to free her father, Emma Frost (Tahyna Tozzi), who is also in the prison. With no more quarrel with Stryker, Wolverine departs. Victor, angered at Stryker that they let Wolverine go, demands the adamantium procedure. Stryker, however, tells him that they won't survive the procedure and in an act of anger, Victor tries to kill Silverfox. Wolverine hears Silverfox's screams and attacks Victor. finally having the chance to kill Victor, Wolverine chooses not to give in to his animal instincts and instead knocks him out. Silverfox shows Wolverine to the holding cells, and they frees the mutants there; among them are Emma Frost and Scott Summers. Panicking, Stryker prematurely activates his newest creation, Weapon XI (Scott Adkins) (also known as Deadpool), a bald, pale skinned and deformed Wade Wilson, lacking a mouth and with patterns marking adamantium bone structure. The rescue party approached an exit when it is blocked by Weapon XI who is under Stryker's control. Wolverine tells them to find a new exit as one blades extend from Weapon XI's arms, similar to Wolverine's claws, but more like Wilson's preferred katanas. At this moment Wolverine realizes that this monstrosity is actually Wade Wilson. Weapon XI has the abilities of several of the killed and captured mutants such as Scott's optic blasts, Wraith's teleportation, and Wolverine's healing ability. During the escape, Silverfox is mortally wounded. The other mutants escape through the facility's tunnels, guided by Scott who is unable to tell them how they knows the exit. Emerging from the tunnel, the party encounter a helicopter. Emerging from the helicopter is a familiar figure, Professor Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart), who has guided them to safety and offers them a shelter at his school. Meanwhile, the fight between Wolverine and Weapon XI spills onto the top of three of the plant's cooling towers. Weapon XI overpowers and prepares to decapitate Wolverine, but Victor returns to aid his brother. Wolverine and Victor, now working together, are able to decapitate Weapon XI; sending its head, still firing optic blasts, down in to the cooling tower. Wolverine coldly informs Victor that despite his help, their relationship is over. Victor basically reminds him that as brothers, they can seldom be done, and jumps off the side of the cooling tower. The resulting damage from the optic blasts causes the cooling tower to collapse, but Wolverine is saved by Gambit. Wolverine asks Gambit to ensure the prisoners are safe, while they returns to find Silverfox, who had stayed behind. As they carries her to safety, Stryker shoots him in the back with an adamantium bullet. Wolverine tries to kill him but is soon shot in the head, knocking him unconscious. Silverfox uses her powers of persuasion to order Stryker to walk away until his feet bleed, then dies from her injuries. Gambit returns to assure Wolverine that the mutants are safe, but due to amnesia caused by the brain damage the adamantium bullets inflicted, Wolverine does not remember anything (this was Stryker's purpose, knowing that even the adamantium bullets could not kill Logan). Gambit tries to get Wolverine to come with him, but they declines. Gambit wishes Wolverine nice luck before departing, and Wolverine flees the scene as the ambulances and police arrive. It then cuts to Stryker, who is approached by a military vehicle and accused of knowing something in regards to General Munson's untimely death. finally, at the end of the credits, in a bonus scene, Wolverine is seen drinking shots in what appears to be an oriental bar. three time asked by the bartender if they is drinking to forget, they basically replies, "no, drinking to remember".