Friday, March 10, 2017

Logan (2017)

When I first saw this trailer for LOGAN using the song 'Hurt' by Johnny Cash I knew that the filmmakers went into this one to tell a different kind of story of The Wolverine. A smaller story but a more personal one. It's a gift to all of us who have loved these characters and the actors that portrayed them all these years. I know Hugh Jackman is getting rave reviews but so is Patrick Stewart who also was one of the greatest bits of casting in movie history. He IS Charles Xavier just as Hugh Jackman IS Wolverine.

However this Wolverine is unlike any you have seen before. He is half the man he used to be. He still has his healing factor but it works much slower than ever.

The year is 2029. Logan drives a limo filled with all kinds of idiots so he and an elderly Charles Xavier can survive their pitiful existence.

Then a young girl enters his life and everything changes. The once reclusive Logan is forced to fight one last battle against the government agency that wants to exploit mutants as they have since mutants first started appearing on the scene.

Logan has a powerful enemy in Pierce, a deadly cyborg operative who talks all sickly sweet. He knows that  Logan is protecting Charles in Mexico and that Charles has Alzheimer's. Basically he is threatening to rip open Logan's closely guarded life to get back the girl, Laura who has escaped from the government and who is herself searching for Logan's help. He plays a good villain because he doesn't twirl his mustache like most of the other X-men villains have in previous films. That is the most frightening kind of bad guy - one who really cares about doing a thorough job regardless of the collateral damage involved. In other words, a pure psychopath.

Thus begins our story.

Patrick Stewart is fantastic as an old man losing his mind. All his skill as a great stage performer are on display here. His emotions are raw as are his powers which he has lost control of. He has spasms that can only be stopped with medication. Clearly he would also be better off dead at this point.

I got to say, the first 15 minutes are pretty gloomy to say the least. I feel so bad for both of them.

Hugh Jackman is spectacular as a hero with no battles left to fight because the fight has broken him. He's like a man who lost his faith in himself and has no interest in getting it back. He is carrying the world on his shoulders and carried great guilt for something that happened in the distant past.

Do I smell a chance of redemption here?? I smell it coming from down the block. It's too bad that movies like this don't reward Oscars to it's actors because Jackman certainly qualifies with this performance. I was moved to near tears many times and doubted that victory for him was even possible.


Dafne Keen is magnetic as the clone of Wolverine. For a girl so young she has the abilities of a top notch action star. Her fight scenes are balletic, frenetic and all together lethal. It will be great to watch her grow into the role as she continues as the new movie Wolverine. That would eliminate the need to recast the male Wolverine role.
When you watch Laura in action you can see how she escaped from her captors and how valuable she is to the government. In the comic books she went by the codename X-23, the 23rd attempt to make a super soldier like Wolverine. He was Weapon X (or Weapon 10).
The road movie our three main characters go on is exciting and interesting. It's more like a old school western than a superhero movie and the experience is much the better for it. But the movie is extremely violent. As violent as a Wolverine story has to be. Anything less and I would have felt cheated. It earns it's R rating and I kinda like to hear superheroes swearing.
Definitely one of the greatest superhero movies I have ever seen. I left the theatre totally impressed, entertained and actually full of hope. A brilliant farewell to characters that I have loved for so long. If you are a fan, don't miss this one.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Wow, I'm looking forward to it even more now after your review!

I agree, they may go for a lull in making Wolverine movies now -- let some distance elapse between Jackman's performances and whoever will be the new Wolverine. In the meantime, a young X-23 could be an exciting surrogate. The MCU needs more female leads.

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

And the mutants need a leader.