After the relative success of X-Men: Days of Future Past, Fox has again stumbled with their latest outing. While X-Men: Apocalypse is a visual spectacle, it lacks character development especially with their new cast members. We already fell in love with James McAvoy’s Charles Xavier, Michael Fassbender’s Magneto, and Jennifer Lawrence’s Mystique. I liked the tension between the two friends although I wish they could’ve done more with it. You could argue that Raven was unnecessary for the film. Nicholas Hoult’s Beast keeps on inventing stuff for the professor so he’s a bit essential. Rose Byrne’s Moira McTaggert reignites the romantic side of Professor X. Sophie Turner’s Jean Grey looks promising and the X-Men movies seem to be headed in another Dark Phoenix storyline. Quicksilver once again stole the show with his rescue of the students of Xavier’s School for Gifted Children although I felt it was too long. I have issues with their new Cyclops and the appearance of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine looked forced. Oh, and don’t get me started on The Four Horsemen! I weep for Angel once more!
The X-Men is my favourite team of superheroes. I cried when my father told me to go to sleep while I was still watching The Uncanny X-Men on TV. I know their source material is vast and Age of Apocalypse is one of its most popular comics. This is why I am hugely disappointed with how this movie turned out. Yes, the special effects was awesome but it was inconsistent. En Sabah Nur is supposed to be one of the group’s most feared enemies. Yet, he seemed laughable in this version. The studio might have accepted the challenge to bring him to the big screen. However, they failed miserably to give justice to how evil and sinister he is. I’m not sure how the box-office earnings will turn out but I’m pretty sure Fox will continue the franchise despite how critics rate this film. I just hope they will patch things up with Marvel Studios and push through with the Marvel Shared Universe. Keep your fingers crossed, fellow Marvel fans!
Now, I do not want to leave this review on a bad note. The movie did have its moments and I’ll focus on those instead of highlighting the disappointing bits. Here are 5 things I liked about X-Men Apocalypse:
1. Up To Speed
Everybody who watches this movie will probably rave about this part. When Apocalypse and his Horsemen leave Charles Xavier’s school with destruction in their wake, Quicksilver has just arrived to possibly reconnect with his father, Magneto. He charges inside to rescue the students and things are slowed down to capture his actions. It builds on what he did in the previous film and showcases how powerful the speedster really is.
2. Danger Room
One of the highlights for me is towards the end when the X-Men are in their new costumes and a door in the Danger Room opens and out comes three Sentinels. That brought me back to the time of the 90’s cartoons. It’s nice to know that they’re doing some of the things right.
The Phoenix Force is one of the most powerful beings in the Marvel universe and I won’t say no to Fox having another go at it. I’m also praying that they reach an agreement with Marvel Studios so we can have an Avengers vs X-Men movie.
4. Period Piece
I love how the X-Men movies connect with historical events such as the Cuba Missile Crisis and JFK’s Assassination. The film contains several references to the 1980’s where it is set. I will probably miss those once the films catch up to the current timeline.
5. Mr. Sinister Incoming
If you stuck around end credits scene as any good Marvel fan should, you would know that there’s a clean-up crew who showed up at the bunker where Colonel Stryker held Mystique, Quicksilver, Beast, and Moira McTaggert captive. It’s the place where Weapon X was kept and the clip featured men in suits retrieving what appears to be blood samples and placing it in a suitcase with the name Essex Corp on it. Comic book readers know that the company mentioned is owned by a certain Nathaniel Essex, the man who would eventually become Mr. Sinister. He is a long-time villain of the group particularly of Cyclops.
Only time will reveal if the X-Men franchise is strong enough to survive the war of comic book movies. Of course, they could just pull another Days of Future Past with the next trilogy or so. But moviegoers are confused enough to be taken for another spin. Hopefully, Fox follows Sony’s footsteps and give Marvel Studios the creative license for their characters. If they won’t, then it might be the beginning of the end for them.