Review: Logan Is A Perfect Sendoff To The Character Of Wolverine
Director: James Mangold
Summary: In the near future, a weary Logan cares for an ailing Professor X in a hide out on the Mexican border. But Logan’s attempts to hide from the world and his legacy are up-ended when a young mutant arrives, being pursued by dark forces.
The X-Men movies are quickly becoming one of the most inconsistent comic book series to date. While the first one, along with Blade and Spider-Man, is part of the reason the modern superhero boom exists, it is very much a product of its time. There are more misses than hits as far as I’m concerned and there hasn’t been a great one since X-Men: First Class (Deadpool is technically an X-Men movie but it is very much its own thing). When Deadpool became a surprise megahit despite the R rating Fox took almost no time to announce that the third solo Wolverine movie was also going to be R. That didn’t mean it was going to be good, and until the first trailer came out I kept forgetting this movie was even coming out.
Logan takes advantage of the R rating to give us a bloody and emotional send off to Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine on the best of terms.
The rise of Marvel Studios and box office smashes like Deadpool and The LEGO Batman Movie exist because the people in charge of them love and respect the source material. While it didn’t always seem like it, star Hugh Jackman has a lot of love for the character he has spent the last seventeen years playing. That is something that not only comes through in The Wolverine but even more so in Logan. There aren’t many people willing to take a paycut so their movie could get an R rating, even more so someone of Jackman’s calibre, but his desire to do this right for his last movie is palpable.
Jackman is the best he has ever been in the role but he also has great backup this time. Patrick Stewart’s Professor X is not the man we expect him to be and it makes the character so much more interesting. Professor X has been something of an enigma in the X-Men movies, though the secondary trilogy with James McAvoy have been trying to give him more depth. This is likely Stewart’s final performance as well and he is unbelievably good. The real star of the movie is Dafne Keen as Laura. This is a star making turn for Keen as she commands the movie with every scene that is she in. This is a physical and emotional role that will define her career going forward. Dane Keen is a girl going places and we won’t be seeing the last of her if there is any justice in the world.
I’ve been purposely vague about the story because I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone. The trailers have done a pretty good job of hiding what the story of the movie actually is and more about setting the tone. The action is some of the best we’ve seen in an X-Men movie probably ever. With Logan and Laura both having claws there are truly wince inducing moments as they slice and dice anyone who crosses them. The movie has a few curse words but the rating is due to the violence. It is similar to John Wick: Chapter 2 in that it is less gory and more brutal. There are limbs flying but the blood isn’t spraying everywhere. The movie doesn’t pull its punches when it come to the fight scenes and it soars because of it.
Logan is the last outing for Hugh Jackman’s iconic Wolverine that has helped turn the character into one of the most recognizable in the world. With the help of Keen and Stewart, Jackman is able close the book on Logan on his own terms. While I still think X-Men: First Class is my favorite X-Men movie, this one sits proudly as number two. Logan is a prime example of what happens when the people in charge of a movie love the source material and other studios should take notice.
NOTE: there was no after credits scene in my screening but, much like Deadpool, it appears that Fox might be attaching it after critics screenings. These are just rumors so stay through the credits just to be safe.