Last night I got to go watch the X-Men Apocalypse pre-screening for the film, and I’ve got a lot to say about it! And p.s, major spoilers ahead. You’ve been warned.
Before I shit all over this film, here’s what I actually liked about it. First things first, I enjoyed how Oscar Isaac played Apocalypse. I thought he did a good job, however I just wished they made him look bigger, especially since Apocalypse is supposed to be the most menacing villain for the X-Men.
I loved how all the characters are in such a different place due to the events from Days of Future Past. Magneto is trying things Charles way by living with humans and being like them. He’s married, has a daughter, and seems genuinely happy. But of course that all goes to hell once people find out about him and his family accidentally dies. For me his anger fuels why he joins Apocalypse, and this makes sense…for awhile.
Which leads me to what I don’t like about this film. How Apocalypse’s horsemen all just follow him for shits and giggles. No one’s been forced and no one really knows anything about him. They all seem okay with destroying the world. Yes, Magneto has tried to do that a couple of times, but he would never, I repeat, never do it at the cost of Charles’ life. So the fact that he was okay with Apocalypse trying to kill Charles so that he can have his body is the stupidest thing ever. Magneto and Charles may be a lot of things, but they never want to see each other die, and would protect each other at all costs. So even though he’s hurting about his family, I doubt Magneto would have let it go that far.
Now this is something that I know would NOT stand with Storm. She always values human life, regardless of if it’s mutant or not. Storm is one of the best characters in the X-Men and one of the most powerful (next to Charles, Magneto, and the Phoenix). Now you would never know this because the films have butchered her character time and time again. First they cast Halle freaking Berry to play this iconic role…I’m sorry what. Homegirl tried and failed with the accent (at least this Storm had the accent) and was so far from being epic it was laughable.
Here’s some history about Storm. She was worshiped by her tribe in Africa as a princess because of her white hair and powers, and later becomes a queen. A QUEEN. She was not living in the slums, didn’t worship Mystique, and was born with white hair. She’s considered to be Charles right hand woman and is fiercely loyal to him. Plus, surprise, she’s also married to Black Panther (you may remember him from being a total badass in Captain America: Civil War), so you know she’s legit. Storm’s powers are limitless, and in one storyline when she becomes a horsemen of Apocalypse she’s basically unstoppable. I’m not joking when I tell you she’s one of the most powerful mutants. You can legit look it up. Seriously, is it really so hard to cast her right and give her an epic story? She spent most of the fight hiding and trying to take down Scott. She could do that with her eyes closed! Now I get that she’s playing a younger version (too young, because Storm’s actually much older than Jean and Scott), so she’s probably not as strong as I know her to be, but it was still awful. And one of my biggest pet peeves. She may not be as strong as usual, but she sure as hell should be stronger than that.
And let’s talk about the pacing. I felt like nothing was really happening. It was just like: let’s find mutants, let’s talk about mutants, let’s find more mutants, let’s make speeches. Once the fight started between the characters it was nothing more than meh. I felt bad because I kept comparing it to Captain America: Civil War’s epic airport fight scene between all the heroes. Now that’s how you do a superhero mash up fight! This films was mediocre at best.
Quicksilver, once again, stole the show. Ever scene he was in he killed it! The scene where the mansion blew up was probably my favourite one in the entire film. And I love that they tied in how Magneto’s his father. Quicksilver and his younger sister Scarlet Witch’s (one of my favourite X-Men) story is completely linked to the fact that Magneto is their father, so I enjoyed that little Easter egg.
Speaking of Easter eggs, Wolverine was shoehorned into the film because some of the X-Men were taken hostage by William Stryker and brought to Alkali Lake, where Wolverine was experimented on and given his claws. Jean, Scott, and Nightcrawler find Wolverine trapped in a box as he’s becoming Weapon X (which the after the credits scene hints toward the next Wolverine film being all about the Weapon X program) and they save him. He kills everyone and Jean gives him a piece of his past back and freeing his mind in the process. I liked and I didn’t like this scene. It was nice having Hugh Jackman back, it was fun seeing Jean and Wolverine have a connection (even at such a young age) with Scott hating him, and it was nice having the film tie into the next Wolverine movie. But it felt slightly forced, and almost unnecessary. They got captured and then they broke out….so, what was the point of all that then? Just to see Wolverine? Okay, got it.
I surprisingly liked Sophie Turner as Jean Grey. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about her, but she did a good job. Jean’s always been a pretty annoying character for me, but I thought Sophie did a good job of bringing in her strength and fear without her annoying Jean Grey mannerisms. So good on you Sansa Stark! However, I thought it was a little too neatly tied up that Jean could unleash her full Phoenix powers on Apocalypse only to become herself again right after. If homegirl used that amount of power, she would have become the Phoenix, no questions asked.
I also wish that Psylocke was more bad ass. She’s supposed to be an amazing fighter that trains Angel (who she also dates) and is legit a ninja. I was excited for some epic fight scenes, but all we got was her slicing the car, which we saw over and over again in the trailer, so it wasn’t even that cool when it came down to it. Plus they killed Angel…I won’t lie, I was pretty upset about it. Ah well, at least he was much better than Angel from X-Men 3: Last Stand.
Okay here we go, let’s talk about Mystique. I am so over Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique. I love J-Law, I think she’s a cool girl, but I literally can’t stand her in this iconic role. Mystique is one of, if not, the most bad ass female character the X-Men has. She’s a no nonsense woman that does whatever the hell she wants because she thinks it’s right. She hates humans, is fiercely protective of mutants, and will crush anyone that stands in her way. Lawrence’s Mystique is whinny, acts tough but really isn’t, and goes back and forth from being blue to being white. I hate it. Mystique is always blue!!! In the first two X-Men films, I loved her, but I wanted to scratch my eyes out in First Class. They kind of redeemed themselves with her character in Days of Future Past, but this film pretty much vetoed all her progress.
I get that she’s an accomplished actress and very popular, so they want to capitalize on Lawrence. But I’m sick of how important they’re trying to make Mystique. It’s annoying. Why must she always be the main character in these films? And now all of a sudden she’s an X-Men working with Charles and training the students? Training Storm??? What. The. Actual. Hell?
All in all, I’m pretty disappointed with the film, which is sad because I was so pumped when I saw the trailer. The X-Men are my favourite thing about Marvel, and while they’ve had some pretty good films in the past (X-Men, X2, First Class, and Days of Future Past), maybe it’s time to put the X-Men to rest. Or at least sell them to Marvel so they can do a better job.
What did you think of X-Men Apocalypse?