Logan: Film Review

“Nature made me a freak. Man made me a weapon. And God made it last too long.” – Logan


Writer: James Mangold, Scott FrankMichael Green Director: James MangoldRun Time: 2h17m, Full Cast

To watch this film you don’t particularly need any of the franchises former film’s back-story. It works completely on its own as it doesn’t tie into other stories in great detail. It does pick small items from the solo and group films. Example: The an adamantium bullet was introduced in the first solo film (Origins). There were a few articles going in that said this isn’t in the same universe as the other films based on the merry mutant bunch.

It was established in the comics “Wolverine Origins“, that Logan is, at his core, a man who is both troubled, brings on trouble to those around him, and those he loves and cares about. In this film, we get the clearest view of who and what Logan is. He’s an animal who wants noting more than to be left alone. He also, under all his tough bravado, simply wants a place to belong and for once to be considered human. Being a mutant is no different than being black, gay, native or any other outsider/minority group. But, at this point, he’s come to terms with it all and just wants to ride off into the sunset.

But Kids always have a way of changing you. Enter Laura.

She represents a second chance at life Logan can never get back. He tried to fight the obligation he knows Charles will put on him. And does so for most of the movie. The film isn’t about how he vanquished evil, but how he beat himself into breaking the mold he made of/for himself.

The first act of this film is super strong.  It doesn’t try to load up on complicated plot beats; and even if something does go over your head, the simple idea of ‘little girl needs saving’ is more than enough to drive the story. The manner in which the film starts with Logan… was simply to let you know this isn’t the same Logan we have seen thus far. It doesn’t truly stop being that sort of high-octane film until you meet the nice rural family. Then there’s much needed peace and time to dispense some quality exposition. Those entire groups of scenes are my second favourite one succeeded by the entire final act (yes, the whole act). While suspended in disbelief, you almost buy into the idea this rural family moment is a perfect time to use the real-world washroom only to find out that Logan’s luck wasn’t far behind him. Then to find out that all the chaos was caused by X-24 (aka all of the violence in Logan, none of his self control or compassion… aka Sabertooth). It’s sad. Because though he has seemingly beat all the other villains before him in his heyday, he was never able to break that mold of what others always wanted him to be. A controlled, raging animal.

Again, enter Laura.

It was great to see Patrick Stewart play a strong, rational, old man. I’m sure everyone has an elder person in their life who knows they are nearing their end and as a result don’t care about the common etiquette they may have displayed in their more youthful years. Many disliked that He curses but, given the situation and whom he has to deal with, it was rightly justified. his demeanor helps to shape the world we enter. His realization of what he did in Winchester was some of the best acting he’s done in the whole mutant franchise.

Enter Laura.

From her first action sequence to her final moment before the credits, she was outstanding. She didn’t out act anyone. But she was a decent addition to the cast and I fully want to see her get her own movie or series on HBO one day, for this character. If not, she may just be able to be a fit in as a co-star. But she’s new. Time will tell how far she goes. It’s weird (read: scary) how good kids can be at being crazy sadistic violent beings.

What more can be said of a guy who became a break out star from this role? It’s unfortunate that he’s been in a lot of movies that bombed as the character: as it leaves a bad taste in your mouth as you recall your favourite moments from his time. But, except for “The Wolverine”(previous film), he acted tremendously in every outing he’s had. I think it was a cool idea to have Wolverine be the secret weapon against Logan. We are our own worst enemy after all. Though I might be reaching at straws here, but he decided he was done with the role after all.  I’m glad he was able to do this film and that they made it in the way that they did. It was a great send off for him.

I’ve never seen a movie in all my years that I really wished was in black and white. There’s countless scenes that are so great, in that photography composition way. I’m glad they are re-releasing a black and white version. It was also interesting how play like the scene was when Logan goes to give Xavier the pills in the fallen water tower. It was a well acted and directed scene.

The complaints I have was that it was too little too late. Hollywood ultimately ruined the entirety of the mutant universe. Wolverine shouldn’t have to be on the verge of a reboot in order to get what fans have been asking for since X2( where is his yellow and blue spandex?). I think, since we know most in these genre of films will eventually have a sequel, it’s a bit of a let down to know there’s going to be a new actor and creative team behind whatever is in store for the character. I do hope that they keep this version of Logan alive with his intensity and rage. And also that they develop a fighting style other than what looks to be arms flailing about. Lastly just more use of the word bub.

Bottom line: The perfect Swan song for Hugh Jackman (and Sir Patrick Stewart). He brought a lot of heart to a character that otherwise could have been reduced to some comedic muscle (read as hulk). It’s great however you wish to watch it. If there’s a classic list being made for super hero films, Logan is in the top 10 without question.

Logan-IMAX-Poster_

  • Overall rating of the movie: 9.5 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 9.5 out of 10,
  • Editing: 9.5 out of 10,
  • Audio: 9.5 out of 10,
  • Acting: 9 out of 10,

Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Not sure if I’d pay money to watch it at full price again. But on a Tuesday, the re-release would be a worthwhile watch if you have the time to kill. Definitely worthy of ownership but, only with the black and white version included. Otherwise, watch it on Netflix.

X-Men: Days Of Future Past Movie Review

by Richard Davies
by Richard Davies

Don’t believe the hype.

Director: Bryan Singer Writer(s): Jane GoldmanSimon KinbergMatthew Vaughn

Cast:

more…


This story has been done in almost every iteration of the franchise known as the X-men.

and,

The story is more familiar with those who were born in the  late 70s/80s via comics by the legendary, Chris Claremont; and later by the cool kids who watched the X-men cartoons on fox kids (see above). Since then, it was last seen in comic form (if I’m not mistaken) in the Ultimate Comics version of X-men or the T.v. cartoon, “Wolverine and the X-men”. Whichever was first. But more on that in another post..

The X-Men are, simply put, the white versions of Martin Luther King Jr and Malcolm X with mutant powers Prof. X and Magneto respectively). Their powers could be said to be accurate to their Real life, black inspirations. But that’s another story all on its own. From where we left them we saw Prof. X crippled and Magneto forming the first Brotherhood of (Evil) Mutants. Time passes and then we’re in the future. In my personal opinion this was the(ir) first mistake of sorts. Well… in the way it was handled. I’m all for dystopian futures and stuff of that sort but, this was just a very flat portion of the film. Sentinels are shown here as these giant leap in the line of defence. However, as cool as they are, we’re all gathered to see the X-Men kick ass. To put it lightly,  that doesnt happen to much.

Honestly, I need to just get this off my chest. What really bothers me, is the made up for the sake it, power that Kitty Pryde aka Shadow Cat has. As an avid movie goer,  it works. But as a fan, its a giant piss off.

Ok, back to this story. One of the best things between all the films is Prof. X desire to inspire hope and confidence in humans and mutants alike all while battling his best friend in Magneto. One of the best performances you will probably see this summer comes from Michael Fassbender and  James McAvoy in a plane. The intensity of it and the dire need for it is amazing. Then past that was the real purpose of this story; To see where Charles got to become the hopeful inspiration he is. Those are very interesting elements and I thought, of anything else, Bryan Singer really captured that marvelously. By the end of the film you’re just happy he pulled the first ever movie retcon to a franchise that desperately needed it.

x_men_days_of_future_past_poster-wideThere was a lot of hate on the look of new comer Quicksilver and its understandable. I still think the choices behind his look were stupid. But it does make sense within the story. Its the 70s. A time where basically anything goes and it was very much the boom of of society as we see it and/or know it today. The actor was tremendously casted as well. I wouldn’t say be on the look out for him but, I’m sure he will be back in the next X-Men movie. More on this dude later. Wolverine was very much the tent pole character he’s been since the first movie 14 years ago. He was a brute individual who basically got caught up in the words and actions of prof.X and his fellow X-Men. Jackman has played many various mindsets with this character and if he decided to retire from the role, I wouldn’t be mad. I think in his acting range he’s exhausted all abilities to the character. Plus he keeps hinting he’s done anyway. Aside from that, the future set of mutants didn’t really do much for me. I enjoyed them. But in terms of development, I don’t think anything new was added. I would have liked to seen a bit more of their story. Writer, Simon Kinberg said it was his vision to show you the “end” to original actors. But not to rule anything out.

My biggest flaws with this are the pacing, character relationships, and lack of music. As cool as the fights and action was. I felt it was all very short and uninspired. Bryan Singer isn’t the best for fight scenes,  the best one he was in charge of was and still is X2:X-Men United. This felt like a natural progression to X-Men First class, but it lacked a lot in the action and showing the best of the powers with the added new mutants. The overall look and pacing was off. It was funny but not entirely consistent. It was dry but not sand paper dry (thank the Lord). Theres one point where Iceman and Shadow Cat run by each other and have some weird moment. And for the life of me couldn’t figure out why. That would have been great to see what happened to their love over the years from X3: Last Stand. Beyond that it just felt off. Didn’t seem to get a rhythm going until after the first 40 mins. Then you have the “very odd given the circumstances” love between Charles and Raven aka Mystique. Sorry it just rubbed me the wrong way and sort of came out of left field. Music is probably the most important part to a movie or anything you watch. Its very suggestive and I feel with the epicness that was First Class, this was a giant let down. Another thing that sort of bothered me, was the swtiching back and forth with the current style of film and what I’m guessing was 16mm film. It was natural given the period but felt out of place because as a movie.. who exactly is looking at that reel? We were (mentally) following Wolverine. Why are we seeing that?

Bottom line: I think this is perfect for simple movie watching with no history known or prior memory of the other iterations of this story. The lack of a epic score really dumbs this movie down and where the editing is concerned it is isn’t the strongest. Its not a terrible film but its NO WHERE NEAR THE BEST SUPERHERO MOVIE OF ALL TIME. Avengers still happened, Captain America still happened, The Dark Knight still happened, Iron Man still happened… THE FIRST CHRIS REEVES MOVIE STILL HAPPENED… so… yea.



 

Ratings for all movies will now be out of ten

  • Overall rating of the movie: 7.2 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 7.2 out of 10,
  • Editing: 6.9 out of 10,
  • Audio: 5 out of 10 (Score was lacking),
  • Acting: 8 out of 10,
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Worthy add if you have the others in the series so far. Only getting  it for the special features.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: the “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

Avx #7

So… No more Avengers right?

see this for issue credits

Cyclops, Namor Magik, Emma Frost, and Colossus have all hit and laid siege upon different Avenger “bases” (headquarters if you will) from the tower, to the mansion, to the Avenger Academy (and anything else I’m missing), following what Cyclops said, “No more Avengers”. Where ever Magik is, is where action starts, and all while everyone is fighting, Tony Stark is back in Wakanda studying the effects of her powers against the Magik to see how to beat the PHX.5. Avengers start to be on the losing side, so trying to make an escape plan & trying to buy his team more time, Hawkeye goes off and gets a piece of Emma Frost. He’s set on fire. The avengers and X-men both leave the fight, X-men taking Hawkeye as prisoner knowing they can heal him. Back at Wakanda, Black Panther “bitch” slaps Stark who is trying to create something that will allow himself to die if his plan fails. Dr. Strange and the rest of the Avengers devise a plan to appear like Wanda Maximoff if ever needed. Which it is, in another battle the Avengers take one of the X-men known as “Transonic”. And with 2 simple words Wanda, Makes Namor “Go Away” back on utopia, Namor and Cyclops exchange words, which leads to Emma Frost informing him that The Avengers are in Wakanda, who are planing on leaving to go to the mystical realm of Kun-Lung, when a great wall of water shrouds Wakanda. “WAR” shouts Namor… To Be continued.

Well, as much as I like Matt Fraction, this issue really didn’t feel right. Yes things are still crazy, but it just didn’t feel he got anyone right besides Tony Stark. It’s also kinda pointless what happens to Hawkeye,  actually a lot of it is pointless. It just feels like after the last issue there should be WAY more fights happening. More “chaos” more Avengers versus X-men. I don’t know Fraction to be boring, but it just felt that way, not even Fear Itself was this bad (However I really enjoyed it.. Even though it was RANDOM as hell). Maybe this issue is plagued by having tie in issues to fill in the gaps. One upside is the convo with Stark and T’challa.

Oliver Copiel. I may have hyped his art work a bit, though still very impressive for what it is, it just misses til the last two pages. It may be the placement/use of the panels/frames but something was off. Thankfully, it’s not dreadful, it just doesn’t have the same flair as it usually does. I remember at Fanexpo one year, he said that they finally have him drawing things he likes to draw, and that was around the “Siege” event (So was Soca Explosion 3 folks), so maybe that’s the issue with his work in this one. To further explain it, picture a movie with a lot of quick edits.

Ps. Matt Fraction explained a little what the whole Namor Emma Frost thing was and he basically said it was a long time coming since his uncanny X-men stint, and it’s why he added Namor to the team. So I’ll go out on a limb and say that is issue holds more meaning if you’re an X-men fan.

Enjoy your day,
Rating:
  • Overall rating of the comic: 3 out of 5
  • Art:  3.2 out of 5
  • layout*: 2 out of 5
  • True to character dialogue: 3 out of 5
  • Story: 2.7 out of 5

Thank you for reading feedback is always helpful.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” and May the Force be with you!

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

Avx #6

“This is your Dream Charles, I have given it to you”

10 days after the events on the moon, the “Phoenix 5” (here on out, known as the PHX.5) have created a more tolerable, livable, and PEACEFUL earth, creating a source of food where it once couldn’t grow. On a newly erected X-men Utopia, Charles Xavier, visits his old student Scott Summers aka Cyclops and they discuss how this “accepting” of mutants will cost nothing since it’s almost like a dictatorship. The PHX.5 give reason to be more terrified of mutants who are just mutants, now more than ever. All across the world the PHX.5 are creating peace. It’s a new era from the world, much less, the X-men. At Avengers Tower, Cap.A is having a debrief with Iron fist, who tells him as a battle was ensuing, Colossus showed up, and convinced Zazz to power a PHX.5 power source. In the next room, Stark, Beast, Logan, and the Black Panther are all discussing the possibilities that the PHX.5 may take in a “worst case scenario”, whereas Beast and Black Panther figure, ‘who says they’ll do anything?’ So far they have only made the world peaceful. Days later at the White House, Stark, Cap.A, Obama, and Black Panther, discuss what the PHX.5 meant by a “Pax Utopia”. Elsewhere, Wanda Maximoff foretells the future, or sees, or even creates a possibly deadly time line. Later, the Avengers devise a plan to break into Utopia and snatch Hope away from the PHX.5. Emma Frost senses them, and her and Scott go to violently greet them. Just as the plan seems to be a bust, Wanda shows up and wants to take the Avengers away. Hope wishes to go but as Scott tries to stop Wanda by grabbing her arm, he feels, for the first time since getting the Phoenix Force, pain. After realizing that most of the problems mutants face, stems from the hero’s (in this case the Avengers) protecting the humans against anything, he says 3 words… “No more Avengers”.. To be continued.

Hickman, who wrote issue 4 in this series, and may have given the best opening so far in this crossover event, wrote this issue as well. I’ll probably go out on a limb and say this is my favourite issue to date. The talk with Xavier and Scott really has a certain weight to it. Not only was Professor Xavier a teacher to Scott, but he really was a father figure to him (Scott grew up in an orphanage before his powers came to be). So when he says “here’s you’re dream, I have given it to you”, it’s not intended to be an insult, but I’m sure it is. In the first Superman movie, there’s a saying “the Father becomes the son, and the son, the Father”, which has this never ending cycle. In those words, there holds a lot of meaning for those two, which later it will hold even greater meaning. Another part I loved about this was the Black Panther, and Beast. They give that non superhero feel, meaning they aren’t all, “let’s just go fight”. They give the reader a more rational realization of the entire thing. Fighting is basically all Cap.A and Logan now. In part, due to his weapons manufacturing, so does Iron Man but, BP(Black Panther) is the Head government official of his nation of Wakanda, and Beast hasn’t ever liked fighting, he just did when it was absolutely necessary. He brings up a great point as well about how these are his friends. Honestly, Hickman just does a good job with each character, and ends the issue great with the “No more Avengers” line.

Oliver Copiel, has done a lot of Marvel cross overs. If I’m not mistaken, he was the lead artist for House of M, Siege, and I’m sure he’s done a few Avengers (New) runs. His work in this book is good, but it’s not the best showing he’s ever had. I don’t know if he had other things going on, but I wonder why it’s not as great as others. Most of the flaws are small though. The Scale of Utopia is MASSIVE in this issue. The reveal of that, and the Utopia battle may be my favourite moments in this book.

As I said, this is my fave book, and this is the start of all hell breaking loose. Enjoy your week.
Rating:
  • Overall rating of the comic: 4.7 out of 5
  • Art:  4 out of 5
  • layout*: 4.7 out of 5
  • True to character dialogue: 4.7 out of 5
  • Story: 4.7 out of 5

Thank you for reading feedback is always helpful.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” and May the Force be with you!

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

Avx #3

The third book in this series is a bit quieter.

The fighting is over for the most part and where Hope left Wolverine & Spider-Man, is where this book picks up. Logan awakes after being cooked alive, and Spider-Man fills him in on what he’s missed out on. Logan being who he is, realizes this doesn’t smell right, so when he finds out Cyclops has surrendered, he races over to tell the Avengers it’s a trap, no one believes him and thanks to that, Cyclops disappears with the aid of Colossus’ sister Illanya. When they reach the new location, a plan of finding Hope is put in place. Next is a scene of Hope who builds a location disrupter that throws all tracking systems off the right path. Back at Avengers tower, Logan and Cap.A speak to Rachel Summers, who joined with Logan and his school, who then gives false information to Logan, but seems to have already helped Scott Summers (yes they’re related.. In some multiverse way) with the locations in hand, Cap.A sets up teams to see which lead is legit. Wolverine is with Cap.A, Sharon Carter, and Giant Man who are off to the Savage Land (I recommend you click the link, so as to understand what happens next a little bit). Cap.A pulls Logan aside and tells him what he wants, and his actions on utopia aren’t acceptable, Logan proves stubborn, Cap.A gets irritated, and kicks him from the Quinjet into the arctic snow! … To be continued.

I just wanna say, Ed Brubaker has been working on Captain America for at least 2 years. So that little scuffle with Captain A. is bias… And unfair so America didn’t beat Canada FYI! But other than that, it’s a solid written issue. Not the best out of the series, but it definitely moves the story along. Which is what all story based things need. There is also a scene with Iron Man and Cap.A I didn’t mention above but its my favourite part of this book EASILY!!. I don’t know Brubaker much. I don’t but after reading this I may look at some of his Cap.A run.

Continuity is key to me in a comic book. I’m sure its what made Watchmen so successful. There’s one scene, the start, that has you confused since we left Logan with clothes on, then in this issue you he’s “butt naked” (I’m assuming). But past that it is pretty consistent with having all the battle damage that each hero was shown having. His art this time around is still as superb as it’s ever been. The scene with Magneto moving the metal containers out of the way is one of my favourite scenes. Though that may be a photoshop thing versus his actual talent. Either way.. Its fantastic.

As I said with the Cap.A beating Logan. It’s the only problem I have with this issue. That aside, this is shaping up to be a grand story either way. Wait till next issue where it goes into overdrive.

Rating:

  • Overall rating of the comic: 3.7 out of 5
  • Art:  4 out of 5
  • layout*: 3 out of 5
  • True to character dialogue: 4 out of 5
  • Story: 3.7 out of 5

Thank you for reading feedback is always helpful.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” and May the Force be with you!

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

AVX #0

This is the prequel that doesn’t need to be read.. But should still.
Beware.. It shall have spoilers.
In the remaining text I shall be commentating and discussing the book to any amount of length, so kick back and enjoy.. These shall be more frequent than my Smallville reviews. (That’s right you’re getting two comic book reviews)

For some betrayal, M.O.D.O.K. Attacks a turncoat from A.I.M. (which that *SPOLIER* organization will be seen in iron man 3) and as he moves in for the final blow in comes in the Scarlet Witch. (Which if I’m not mistaken, was last seen in House of M and some later pages of the New Avengers title) She saves the day with the aid of later arriving Spider-Woman and Ms. Marvel, who convince the Witch to pay a visit to Avengers mansion by not taking “No” for an answer. At the mansion, before Scarlet Witch aka Wanda Maximoff, can even reach the front steps, the recently rebuilt Android, the Vision, tells her, in a very cold way, he is no longer welcome here for her actions (see “Avengers Disassembled“) and they both parted ways, the Vision secretly shed a tear.

Off the coast of California lies the X-men’s base called “Utopia” (think of an island that is the essence of both Professor Xavier’s school, and a little of Magneto’s ultimate dream, also part of the asteroid used in Asteroid M) where Hope Summers, the first Mutant Born since M-day, (House of M.. Again Scarlet Witch) is sneaking out to be a superhero when caught by Scott Summers aka Cyclops who tells her how important she is, and that she shouldn’t leave utopia.. Her power is similar to Rogue’s where she can take and copy someone else’s power.. Only she needs to just simply be in their presence. That being said.. She optic blast Summers and jets off on a jet pack to a bank robbery in progress. She stops it and in walks Emma Frost and Summers to take her back. The book ends with her washing her hands at the edge of utopia and a zoom out to space.. The Phoenix is coming…

There’s a thing at Marvel Comics.. I guess you could call it a rule, to treat every Comics as if it was the reader’s first ever comic. This is a great rule… Some times. The fist few pages usually are a recap to the last arc.. Or the last several, if not the last issue. This works.. Especially if you don’t read other books, or missed a few issues, if you’re a first time reader.. Then its PERFECT! I get it. But as I said at the top, you don’t need to read this issue.. If you read X-men: second Coming (strongly recommend) or even House of M or Avengers Disassembled, you know about Hope and or Wanda Maximoff respectively.  So it felt… Boring. But still it does kind of set the stage. At the time of writing this, I’m at issue seven (there’s 12 issues in the main arc, and a bunch of side issues as per any summer comic event)

So it does help. In comics there’s a prejudice that if you just jump in, you’ll never know what is happening so you wait for a good jump on point, or you back track. Both work fine to be honest. More so with Marvel books. But sometimes you just have to go and hope for the best. Most people who read comics started as children.. So let’s face it.. As kids we always just jumped in.. But either way.. This book is fine to be a jump on point.

The art here is spectacular. As you seen in my movie reviews, (or you should have) I really enjoy 3D movies. So when an artist draws something out of panel it just makes the whole page pop and even look that much better. It stands out more.. Literally. It boosts the story, I feel, to higher lengths.. (Hey Pere Perez, take notes). I’m all about that camera angle that has meaning. When this style is used appropriately, it has this way of being something more than a 2-D picture. Even though the book starts off weird the art is definitely the saving grace here.

Enjoy your week!
Rating:
  • Overall rating of the comic: 3.5 out of 5
  • Art:  4.8 out of 5
  • layout*: 5 out of 5
  • True to character dialogue: 4 out of 5
  • Story: 3 out of 5

Thank you for reading feedback is always helpful.
THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” and May the Force be with you!

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW