The film X-Men: Days of Future Past is a loose adaptation of the Claremont comic book classic of the same name. Original big screen X-Men: Wolverine, Storm, Kitty, Colossus, Iceman, and Prof X join new future X-Men: Bishop, Warpath, Blink, and Sunspot in a dystopian future where the mutant-hunting Sentinels have all but exterminated the children of the atom. Similar to the book, the only way to survive is to stop this future from happening by sending one of their own back in time telepathically to stop the assassination that was the catalyst for this bleak future.
In the film, we’re told that only Xavier is a strong enough telepath to transfer a consciousness through the time stream but physically only Wolverine can make the journey (In the book this was Kitty Pride’s role). Wolverine wakes up in his 1973 body to seek out the young Xavier who has spent the better part of his time since the events of First Class moping around his mansion. Only Beast has remained by his side while everyone else has left the school. As you know by the film’s trailers, Charles is once again able to walk thanks to Hank’s miracle serum that’s also robbed Xavier of his powers. Outside of Wolverine’s time stream jumping, Xavier is the other character whose story we’re suppose to care about. Spoiler… it works. Mystique also becomes a pivotal character as she’s out to assassinate Sentinel creator Bolivar Trask (played by GoT Peter Dinklage).
Days of Future Past plot becomes a time travel sci-fi story that balances its multitude of elements much better than Amazing Spider-Man 2 did with all the characters in that film. That’s a credit to both returning X-Men director Bryan Singer and writer Simon Kinberg. While it isn’t a perfect narrative, it does manage to keep the audience’s attention and take chances while remaining concise. My only problem with it was the repetitiveness of some of the “bleak future” dialogue. We get it, future bad must stop! Let me balance that thought out by saying this; I believe James McAvoy’s young Xavier could grow to become Patrick Stewart’s older heroic Xavier. The acting is just that good here from most of the cast in the film.
Visually, you’ll be in for amazing action sequences from the opening future battle to the climactic Washington D.C. fight. Though the 1970’s Sentinels looked a bit like water heaters for my taste, one could argue that’s the price for giving oversized robots in the 70’s a real feel. Outside of that the visuals of the film are simply stunning.
Let’s talk about one point that is going to get me letter bombed. Quicksilver. Did he look ridiculous in the Carl’s Jr ad? Yes. But it’s a welcomed surprise how vital and organic he feels to the story here, and in truth the performance isn’t bad. Which should teach us all, online scorn is not to be trusted… unless it’s by Louis Love. I will say I believe Aaron Johnson will also make a great Quicksilver for Avengers 2, but he’ll feel vastly different than this one did.
In the end, Days of Future Past is a reward of its own ambitions. It brings the glory of the first two movies back in a way that writes out the bad taste of The Last Stand. That’s not just in terms of the quality of the movies, it also applies to the future of the franchise. We get new possibilities from this movie that could rewrite literally write out of continuity the mistakes made by X-Men: The Last Stand. Fans might have a new favorite comic book team movie franchise to look forward to.
So let’s score this bad boy…
[IMAX IT!,Matinee,Redbox,Skip it]
IMAX maybe even twice, thought I’m not sure it’s in Imax but it definitely warrants that price.