johnlink ranks X-MEN: THE LAST STAND (2006)

I sort of assumed that I would never see this movie again. When I saw it in theaters the level of disappointment was deep. But with the new X-MEN out, I wanted to revisit the original trilogy since it had been eight years since the third’s release. I held out hope that maybe I was wrong. Maybe time was kind to this movie. Nope. It still sucks. Several times during this movie I made the same face as Wolverine does here:

X-Men-3-The-Last-Stand-Bluray-x-men-the-movie-27774741-1280-543

I watched X-MEN: THE LAST STAND (2006) on 6.2.14. It was my second viewing of the film and first since it was in theaters.

In the 80s it was perfectly acceptable to take a sequel and waste it. Back then movies seemed to stand alone, even if the thought of another return of, say, Freddie Kruger, seemed imminent. But things are different now. Movies are made with the idea that they will be a trilogy, or have a six movie arc, or be a franchise.

With the first two X-MEN films, Bryan Singer set a high standard. There was another chapter to tell, so the franchise was entrusted to Brett Ratner to wrap up some story lines. It is hard to remember the last time someone had such a wonderful franchise and nearly demolished it so swiftly

With the third SPIDER-MAN movie, rightly panned, there was an issue of excess and getting away from what made the franchise successful. That happens in X-MEN: THE LAST STAND as well. Additionally, Ratner oversees the death of major characters who are swept aside, ignores some of the precedents set up in previous films, and over-bloats this movie to the point of silliness. The other X-MEN films had walked the tightrope of comic book violence versus silliness admirably. Ratner falls into the net in the first few scenes and never recovers.

The final battle in this movie is God awful. Standing on a hill are two villains (Magneto and Jean Grey/Phoenix) who are capable of crushing the buildings and demolishing everything in front of them. But they don’t. Why? Because the film has introduced sixty other characters who have to fight. Literally, right in front of them. Why couldn’t Magneto have been launching cars all along? Because that would ruin the climactic build later. So, rather than finding something else for him to do… He. Just. Stands. There. It is one of the most awkward and obviously manipulated battles in the current era of comic book movies. AVENGERS found a way to do this with magnificent nuance and solid story telling. This X-MEN movie doesn’t bother to try.

What else sucks? Rogue is turned into nothing but a love interest. She’s wasted entirely. James Marsden wanted to do another movie so they kill of Cyclops, wasting the team leader. The movie decides to pay homage to an X-Men web parody with the line “I’m the Juggernaut, bitch”. They didn’t bring back the best character from the second film, Nightcrawler. The Golden Gate bridge gets moved for no real reason other than to have some big epic moment which actually undermines what Magneto is trying to do. Xavier’s battle with Jean Grey feels like a waste as well, not the culmination of two and a half films worth of development.

What’s good? Not much. Kelsey Grammer’s Beast is a solid addition. The plot shouldn’t be bad, with mutants potentially being turned into humans, but the execution is not strong. There are just way too many people involved that we don’t care about. This has what feels like three times of the characters of X2 and a 30 minute shorter run time. There just isn’t time to deal with all the people thrown at us.

Hell, I can’t even make a list of things I like about this movie. I guess it is time to just stop. This movie sucks.

SCORES

FILM: 3; MOVIE: 5; ACTING: 5; WRITING: 2; BONUS: -1

This gets a negative point for botching the franchise. I can’t wait to see if Singer resurrected it with DAYS OF FUTURE PAST.

3+5+5+2-1=14

FINAL SCORE: 3.5 out of 10.

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~ by johnlink00 on June 3, 2014.

2 Responses to “johnlink ranks X-MEN: THE LAST STAND (2006)”

  1. Yeah, Ratner sort of screwed this up. But at least it was somewhat fun. Good review John.

    • I had trouble having fun because I couldn’t help but watch potential drift away. I shouldn’t be so angry at this movie, but I can’t help it.

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