November 6, 2014 X-Men: Days of Future Past (Movie Review)
The newest saga in the X-men series, X-Men: Days of Future Past, is set in the future after the events of the last movie X-Men: First Class (2011), which saw the emerging collaboration between some of the key members of the X-Men, Professor X or Charles (James McAvoy- Wanted 2008, The Last King of Scotland 2006), Eric or Magento (Michael Fassbender- Inglourious Basterds 2009, Prometheus 2012), Mystique/Raven (Jennifer Lawrence- The Hunger Games 1, 2 & 3, Sliver Linings Playbook 2012), Beast/Hank (Nicholas Hoult-Warm Bodies 2013, About a Boy 2002), and the introduction of Wolverine/Logan (Hugh Jackman- The Prestige 2006, Le Miserables 2012). At the end of the previous film, Charles had been shot by Eric, and Mystique and a few others had left Charles and followed Eric in his pursuit to bring Mutants from a minority to a majority.
Taking place within the Marvel X-Men Universe, X-Men: Days of Future Past is set in a dark desolate future, where machines called Sentinels created by a man named Dr. Boliver Trask (Peter Dinklage- Game of Thrones 2011, The Station 2003) to extinguish mutants, have instead killed most of mankind. The remaining few are either slaves or are trying to fight their way to freedom. Among the latter is Professor, (Patrick Stewart- Star Trek 1987, X-Men), Wolverine, Magneto (Ian McKellen- The Lord of the Rings 2001, The Hobbit 2012), Storm (Halle Berry- X-Men: The Last Stand 2006, Could Atlas 2012), Warpath (Booboo Stewart- Twilight 1, 2, & 3) and Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page- Inception 2010, Juno 2007) whose powers have evolved to being able to projects someones consciousness into their past selves for a limited amount of time. There is little resemblance to civilization and humans are used as disposable slavery. Not much hope remains, but the Professor and Magneto believe they know a way to stop the war occurring before it even happens, but they need Wolverine and Kitty to help.
Due to his incredible ability to heal, Wolverine is thrust into 1973, having to find the younger versions of Professor (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender). This creates quite a few funny scenes, but there is one scene in particular that has such grace, elegance, and wit that it stands out. A younger Peter/Quicksilver (Even Peters- Kiss-ass 2010, American Horror Story 2011), pauses time while he, Eric, Hank (Beast), and Wolverine are close to getting caught in a prison. Set to a very apt ‘Time in a Bottle’ by Jim Croce, this scene has outstanding special effects and timing, which while they are followed through in the rest of the movie, are especially moving.
Once they are together, Wolverine, Eric, and Hank must work together against their different beliefs and concerns. A shadow of his future self, the Professor has, in exchange for the use of his legs, had to forgo his powers, and without them, there is little hope of their success. Teamed with Eric’s not so buried ulterior motives, and Mystique’s misguided yet righteous anger, it makes for a very suspenseful and action packed story. Flashing back between the future and the past keeps you involved in each characters whereabouts, and you can recognize traits and people that are more evident in the future. The film integrates a lot of the past into the X-Men universe, offering alternative explanations for some world famous events including the Vietnam war.
Time is very much of the essence in this blockbuster film released by 20th Century Fox on May 23, 2014. Directed by Bryan Singer (X-Men: First Class 2011, Jack the Giant Slayer 2013), fanatics make sure to get a copy to watch over and over again. X-Men: Days of Future Past is a fantastic movie, while bleak in places and void of joy, there is still a sparkle and a true hope of knowing that the X-Men will conquer and the human race will survive. Or humanity really doomed to repeat our fate over and over again? CrypticRock gives X-Men: Days of Future Past 5 out of 5 stars.