“X-Men: Apocalypse takes the franchise to a new level”
Thanks to 20th Century Fox we had the chance to see the Australian premiere of Bryan Singer’s X-Men: Apocalypse. This is our review of the film but, as usual, no matter what we say we recommend that you still go to your local cinema and see it because there’s no critic more relevant to you than yourself.
After millennia asleep, the world’s first mutant (played by an unrecognisable Oscar Isaac) awakes and wants to purge the world of all non-mutants with the help of his four mutant horsemen, and to rebuild civilisation from scratch. Working in the new timeline that was created in Days of Future Past, it’s up to a new generation of X-Men led by Professor Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) to stop Apocalypse.
After the outstanding X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014), director Bryan Singer returns to the franchise with another visual extravaganza (this time with a lot of ‘80s nostalgia), by hinting at some classic issues from the X-Men series and by bringing some of the most beloved characters to the screen, such as Psylocke (Olivia Munn), Jubilee (Lana Condor), and younger versions of Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee), Jean Grey (Game of Throne’s Sophie Turner), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan ), Quicksilver (Evan Peters) and of course the mighty Apocalypse himself(Oscar Isaac – The Force Awakens), all alongside returning characters like Raven (Jennifer Lawrence) and Beast (Nicholas Hoult). The result is an action rollercoaster with plenty of character drama, especially for Magneto ( Michael Fassbender) who, after living as a fugitive, is now trying to give humanity a chance.
What Singer did with Days of Future Past to fix the franchise after the very average X-Men: Last Stand and the poorly made X-Men Origins: Wolverine is simply superb as this new timeline within the X-Men universe allowed him to go deep into the plot and to revisit and even reboot characters like William Stryker and the rise of The Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) who, by the way, has a short but impressive action sequence in the film that will leave comic book fans grinning.
Perhaps the biggest hurdle the film has to leaps is its scale. It aims to be a little too epic and misses, especially by introducing Apocalypse, and not giving him the deep storyline the beloved villain deserved. It doesn’t help that Apocalypse doesn’t look that great, and strays rather far from the appearance he has in the comics. He actually looks a little unconvincing in terms of prowess, despite the impressive powers he displays.
Overall, X-Men: Apocalypse still manages to be one of the best films of the franchise, but lacks the depth of Days of Future Past. It does, however, leave everything nicely primed for a brand new film series with the timeline that Marvel and comic book fans have always dreamed of seeing.
By the way, stay until the end of the credits!
X-Men: Apocalypse opens in cinemas on 19 May 2016