Projections - Movie Reviews

X-men X-Men

In the not too distant future mutated humans have superior powers.  Their comic book battle in this film revolves around those who use their powers for good and the demented mutants who attempt revenge on the non mutants who discriminate against them.

In 1944 we see a young boy separated from his parents in a concentration camp.  As he is taken away he lifts four Nazi soldiers off the ground and causes a metal fence to fold and bend.  That young man in the twenty first century is Magneto (Ian McKellen), the leader of the dark force.  His allies are: a metamorph Mystique (Rebecca Romijn-Stamos), mammoth Sabretooth (Tyler Mane) and Toad (Ray Park).  His counter part Xavier (Patrick Stewart) uses might for right with his comrades: Storm (Halle Berry), Cyclops (James Marsden) and Jean Grey (Famke Janssen).

Just before she becomes Rogue (Anna Paquin), a young girl experiences her first kiss and sucks the life out of her first boy friend.  Sensing her special strength she leaves home and finds herself in Alaska where she encounters Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) who has implants within his body which protrude and become weapons when he faces danger.  Rogue and Wolverine end up at Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters which Charles Xavier manages.  It is a place for gifted mutant kids to study in safety.

As we see kids walk through doors, we are introduced to each of the special powers of the cast.  Wolverine has special metal bladed hands which make him look like Edward Scissor Hands; Rogue can draw energy from others which gives her strength.  Storm is the weather girl who can conger up a perfect storm at will; Jean Grey has mastered levitation; Cyclops can focus light from his eyes into a powerful destructive beam; and Xavier, with the help of massive hardware, can detect the location of the X-Men at any place on Earth.

Under Magneto, Toad has a tongue that reaches across a room and serves as his life line when he is hanging from high dangerous locations.  Mystique can make herself look like anyone and Sabretooth has enormous strength and growls.

From the beginning in the concentration camp, the screen is filled with violence which will be frightening to small children.  A fighting cage in Alaska is particularly ominous and the characters continually kill each other only to come back to life either through their special powers or the strength of one of the others.

The tale is limited, a potential act of Congress to register mutants causes Magneto to plot a massive killing of regular humans, the good X-Men fight to prevent the massacre.  Around, between, above and below the narrow plot are reams of special effects, fed to the screen in separate sequences almost like frames in a comic book.

Followers of the X-Men will enjoy meeting the characters on the big screen, the remainder of us must be satisfied with some interesting performances and special effects which Magneto and Xavier will probably continue in a sequel.

 
Frank
Chris
Tony
Jim
Kathleen
Avg.
X-Men
C+
B+
B
B
B
B
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