23 May 2014

X-Men: Days of Future Past, A Review

Don’t anyone get me wrong. I liked “X-Men: Days of Future Past.” At IMDB, however, I only gave it a 7 even if its overall average rating from more than 15K viewers was a lofty 8.9. That is as good as I have seen viewers rate a movie on IMDB.

Perhaps, it was because I watched the movie’s first showing yesterday through noontime; but the truth was that there were moments when my eyelids were involuntarily starting to droop. If I am being honest, previous X-Men movies were probably faster-paced than this one.

Yet, thematically, this one is more than just a movie version of a comic book story and arguably has more meat to it than previous X-Men movies. This one has more of a thinking element to it.

I have only ever been a grudging fan of time travel movies; and that is because there is always wont to be a paradox or two that ultimately turns out to be hard to digest from the standpoint of reality.


There is probably less action in this X-Men movie compared to the previous ones, but it does allow deeper insights into certain characters such as the Professor, Magneto and Mystique. Magneto, as Wolverine so eloquently describes, has always been an asshole.
Advances in Quantum Physics, however, have shown time travel to be not so implausible, after all. These have made paradoxes in time travel movies a bit easier to explain and to consequently accept.

X-Men: Days of Future Past is just one of several Hollywood blockbusters that have turned to Quantum Theory to make their plots seem plausible; and one wonders if the general public is being subliminally educated to eventually accept what is essentially still a mind-boggling proposition.

At any rate, X-Men: Days of Future Past will be nostalgic to viewers my age. The mutants are being exterminated in the future by a weapon created in the early seventies. Thus, to guarantee the future of the specie, Wolverine’s consciousness is sent back to 1973 when the weapon was still being proposed to the American government.

He wakes up to the sound of Roberta Flack’s “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face,” which immediately sets the tone for nostalgia. Cue long hair, bell-bottom pants and huge gas-guzzling cars.

Yup! Seventies alright! Even Richard Nixon’s kalokalike (Mark Camacho) is surprisingly authentic-looking! The authenticity makes Wolverine’s hairdo look so not cool in the era!

Two scenes stand out visually. The first is the scene at the Pentagon kitchen when the mutants are trying to free Magneto from incarceration in a special chamber deep inside the building.

The stop-motion cinematography is simply stunning! There is even a comic twist in the way Quicksilver diverts bullets and makes sure that no harm comes to the X-Men. I felt that this scene alone was well worth the money that I paid to see the movie.

The second is when Magneto lifts an entire stadium to frame the White House with. One may wonder if this scene is necessary at all; but it is still visually stunning. It is the sort of special effects that you cannot hope to see in a Philippine-made movie even in a hundred years.

There is probably less action in this X-Men movie compared to the previous ones, but it does allow deeper insights into certain characters such as the Professor, Magneto and Mystique. Magneto, as Wolverine so eloquently describes, has always been an asshole.

Just one last note about the movie: I watched it on 3D but while I appreciated the visual depth, I also felt that there were not enough incidents in the film that would have made watching it in 2D any different. I think the movie is worth the bother; but I should have seen it on 2D.

Acknowledgment: Top photo from http://www.hdwallpapers.in.




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