As an “old school” Geek, I still get excited about comic book movies. It’s something about the pages coming to life, seeing my heroes on the big screen and connecting that line between imagination and reality. I enjoy the ride and appreciate all the work, expertise and money that go into the entire experience. That being said, the last two Wolverine movies failed miserably! I was hesitant when I heard they were making a third, so I wasn’t going to expect much out of this one as well. Especially after the last X-Men’s Apocalyptic fail. Okay, maybe it wasn’t that bad, but it was not all that good either leaving a lot to be desired from the story and characters. Then I saw Logan.
Let’s take a step back and go back to my time. In the 80’s and 90’s Wolverine was the #1 character in the Marvel Universe and just like so many characters in the comic industry, he became oversaturated and was used in just about everything. Each month there were at least three X-men titles, two Wolverine titles, an Avengers title and countless guest appearances in many of the Marvel titles that needed some star power. Naturally, this caused a lot of continuity problems and confusing storylines. Logan/Wolverine was a victim of his own success and even poked fun of it in a few issues waiting for one group or another to notify him in time of a crisis.
In the year 2000 Fox rolled the dice on a big budget X-Men movie. Brian Singer put his vision of Marvel’s merry mutants on the big screen and cast his second choice, unknown actor Hugh Jackman in the Wolverine role. It goes now without saying, the movie, and Hugh Jackman, was a huge hit.
Seventeen years eight movies later and a few special appearances, Hugh Jackman is playing Wolverine one last time. Coming off the disappointing 2013’s “The Wolverine”, Hugh Jackman and director James Mangold wanted to do something different with the Wolverine character to bring him back to his root’s and heart of the character with a simple story. This reminds us of how great of a character he once was before he was in epic showdowns of saving the world.
In 2017’s “Logan”, James Mangold lowered the budget and Hugh Jackman took a pay cut to convince Fox to let them make Wolverine an R rated movie and to create the vision they wanted. Thanks to the success of last year’s R rated Deadpool, Fox was willing to roll the dice again.
This is not any Wolverine movie you’ve seen before.
The first words you hear are “F&*k”. The first fight scene shows you what you always thought Wolverine’s claws could do. The story takes place in 2029. Logan is dying from the poison in his Adamantium bones because his healing factor is failing. Logan is vulnerable and weak, and “The Wolverine” is now only a legend kids read in comic books. There are no X-Men, only Charles Xavier, who’s once most powerful mind is suffering from dementia and must be under Logan’s grudging but loyal care. A new mutant (X-23/Laura) enters Logan’s life beginning another great comic story.
Here we get to see Hugh Jackman finally showing his acting skills in the way we always knew he could and were dying to see. Patrick Stewart plays his most exceptional Charles Xavier to date and gives us a performance right up there with “I see four lights”. We see a new side of Logan/Wolverine in his counter to X-23/Laura. Newcomer Dafne Keen practically steals every scene she is in with just her expressions; and her fighting skills and moves are up there if not equal with Hit Girl from Kickass. We also finally get to see Wolverine’s berserker rage, ‘nuff said!
I can’t recommend this movie enough. Logan is not the typical superhero movie. With direct comparisons from the classic western “Shane” by Mangold, and a feel of” Unforgiven” it is a gritty Western, not a superhero movie. And that suits the character of Logan perfectly. I highly recommend seeing it on the big screen.
After reading about Wolverine in almost every situation comics can throw at him for the last forty years and then seeing all his movies, this movie actually did something I never thought possible. They left me wanting more.