After breathing new life in to the superhero movie genre with Kick-Ass, Matthew Vaughn takes charge of re-booting the franchise that made superhero movies cool for the 21st Century – The X-Men franchise.
To be honest, I had my doubts about the film mainly because of the casting. I never thought James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender could live up to the standard set by Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen. I was wrong. Having watched the trailer before, I was convinced this was going to be epic… and it was.
It starts of by putting down some of the basic back-story of both Prof. X and Magneto in quick shots and sets motion pretty fast. I must say it’s quite brilliantly paced throughout sans a single dull moment. Kevin Bacon plays Sebastian Shaw, the leader of the Hellfire club, a Hans Landa/Bond movie-type villain who plans to take over the world by starting a Nuclear War between USA and Russia accompanied by the super-hot Emma Frost played by January Jones who are joined by Riptide, Azazel and Angel Salvadore as they push the world towards the Cuban Missile Crisis.
It also sets down the odd friendship between Prof. X and Magneto, one, an optimist who believes the human race wouldn’t turn on them contrary to his own teachings and the other, more realist – almost cock-sure they will. The chemistry between James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender, my man, is like 33-year old scotch, if you know what I mean.
Michael Fassbender wags his German-tongue again, like he did in Inglourious Basterds – playing a Polish man whose mother was killed by Sebastian Shaw in a concentration camp. In order to provoke his power, Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique is mercurial among other young mutants who makes small but powerful cameos with a special mention to Nick Hoult as Beast.
My knowledge of X-Men is rather limited to second-hand comics from my cousin and from Blossoms, but this one set the story down pretty well and is amazing whether you are a comic book fan, an average reader or a newbie.
There is a pretty noticeable Watchmen influence – the entire averting nuclear war scenario. Superhero movies post Batman Begins have been following pretty much the same formula to set up a trilogy. Even though we’re practically ODing on superhero movies as of now, they might die out soon. So much that Matthew Vaughn himself said that he took up the project because this would probably be the last chance he might get to make a Superhero movie. And alas, there is no Stan Lee cameo in this one.