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QUICK REVIEW: X-Men: Days of Future Past – Rogue Cut

Good day to you ladies and gentlemen of the world, its time for another film review and today I’m gonna be talking about X-Men: Days of Future Past – Rogue. Now I loved Days of Future Past last year, it was a wonderful experience in the cinema and when I heard about the extended cut that was going to be released with Rogue included, I was hyped! So I eventually got it on Blu-ray recently and now I’m ready to pass judgement! Oh and before I do this review, I won’t repeat myself by talking about the same aspects of the film, instead I’ll talk mainly about the differences. Minor spoilers to follow for people who haven’t seen Days of Future Past

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So the story goes something like this:

In the future the machines known as Sentinels have taken over the Earth and enslaved mutants and humans alike, and many have lost their lives fighting for justice. Now Professor X, Magneto and group of other mutants are the only survivors and the only way for them to save the future is to change the past. So Wolverine is sent back in time to the 1970’s to get the younger versions of Professor X and Magneto to band together and stop the Sentinel programme from coming into existence.

The plot for the film is essentially the same as the theatrical release, with one major change; the inclusion of Rogue. Now Rogue was absent from theatrical version of this film besides a quick cameo, but here in the future she has a more significant presence as her whereabouts are disclosed and she actually gets to contribute to the main mission. It was definitely nice to see Anna Paquin again as Rogue, however, I don’t feel like she added much to the film, more like her appearance offered an alternative take on some of the future timeline. What I did appreciate was the additional scenes in the future, while they were mainly scenes of additional dialogue, it really added to the plot, developed some of the characters a little more and felt like a positive inclusion. I loved the additional scenes with older Professor X and Magneto, the small yet important scenes with Bobby and Kitty and the extra scenes for the new mutants like Bishop, Sunspot, Blink and Warpath. In the past, the plot doesn’t change, rather there are a few variations on certain scenes or some additional scenes added, but these don’t really add anything to the plot and feel unnecessary. Even one additional scene with Beast and Mystique/Raven, as good as it is, again doesn’t really feel entirely needed.

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Beyond the changes, everything that you liked about the original version of the film is intact and awesome. I still love the action, drama and the performances from the cast involved. And on Blu-ray everything looks very sharp, clean and pretty. Some of my issues with the film haven’t been ironed out like the use of the 70’s Sentinels and the lack of really badass screen time for Storm still bothers me.

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In conclusion X-Men: Days of Future Past is a great alternative to the theatrical version and if it is your first experience of the film then it should be a good time regardless. That being said I believe that some of the changes and additions to this extended cut aren’t necessary or superior to the original and some of the additional scenes actually ruin the pacing of the film too. It really depends on how much you love the X-Men film universe and whether the new stuff adds or detracts for you personally, I’d say its good version, but not a better one.

Rating: 8/10

So what do you lot think of the X-Men: Days of Future Past? Have you seen it and if so which version do you prefer, the Rogue Cut or the theatrical version? Leave your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review. Laters! ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on September 22, 2015 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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X-Men: Days of Future Past Review

Good day to you ladies and gentlemen of the world, its time for another film review and today I’m gonna be talking about the next big film of the summer in the form of X-Men: Days of Future Past. Now the X-Men film series has had a bit of a rocky road but for the most part it has been good and in recent years it has been getting a bit of a resurgence and now we have Days of Future Past, a film that intends to bridge the gap between the X-Men films new and old. So has it succeed? Well read on and find out!

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So the story goes something like this:

In the future the world is pretty much in pieces, the machines known as Sentinels have taken over the Earth and enslaved mutants and humans alike, there is no happiness or hope, only pain, suffering and death. Many have lost their lives fighting for justice and now Professor X, Magneto and group of other mutants are the only survivors and the only way for them to save themselves is to change the past. So Wolverine is sent back in time to the 1970’s to get the younger versions of Professor X and Magneto to band together and stop the Sentinel programme from coming into existence.

The story in this film is very good, smart and entertaining throughout, sure there’s the occasional plot hole and some head-scratching elements that’ll leave you with some unanswered questions, but overall this film has its heart in the right place. The themes of changing fate, rewriting history, bonds of friendship and having hope in the face of adversity are on display in a wonderful and powerful way and I loved how things in the past were relevant to the future and vice versa. This film also doesn’t hope back on the level of loss and devastation caused by the Sentinels in the future, there is a lot of drama and emotion and you buy that this is not a world anyone wants to live in and I love how the stories of the past are just as interesting with characters being so different and having all of the politics involved with mutants and the dawn of the Sentinels through Trask Industries. But the best thing about this film is that it feels right, this film pretty much rectified a lot of the mistakes of this franchise and gives you something that feels good, fresh, fun and by the end of the film you feel like you’re in a happy place with yourself, well I know I did.

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As for the cast they are all on top form with some giving us some of their best performances to date. So let’s start with the young cast first. James McAvoy is still great as Charles Xavier, like in First Class you’re still seeing sides of him that you never knew existed and it only makes his character more layered and easier to relate to. In this film Xavier in the 70’s is a mess and for good reason, but it is seeing him deal with his pain and then journey back the place where he needs to be which is so rewarding. Michael Fassbender is still killing it as Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto, if you thought this guy was cool in the last film then wait til you see this one. This Magneto definitely has more of the McKellen side of the character in him in the way in which he acts, speaks and uses his powers and just like Xavier he’s in a very different place than his older self and seeing the emotions with him and choices he makes only makes him more badass. Jennifer Lawrence returns as Raven/Mystique and she too have never been better. This is more in line with the character we knew from the old films, but still with the emotional conflict and beauty we got from her in First Class. I liked how agile, cool and acrobatic she was, but more so than that, I liked how much of a central role she had in the film, it made me smile so much. I also really liked Nicholas Hoult as Hank McCoy/Beast, he was funny and whenever he was in blue mode he was awesome, but I also liked how he’s still there for Xavier and is really smart.

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Now let’s talk about the veterans. Firstly there’s Hugh Jackman as Logan/Wolverine and do I really have to say how good he is in this film? Come on its Hugh Jackman, he’s automatically awesome. Again this film gives us fans what we love with all the smug, cool and humourous elements of the character, but rather than making the only character that matters, others are given screen time to develop, grow and have action moments in the spotlight, sure this guy is at the center of things a lot, but not as much as he has been before. Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart are still fantastic as old Professor X and Magneto, both of them have a screen presence and gravitas about their acting that is impossible to not enjoy, but beyond that you believe in their connection and there are some really emotional moments between them. Ellen Page gives her best performance as Kitty Pryde/Shadowcat as she is much smarter and serious in terms of her personality and use of her powers, she has a central role to this film and the way she is handled was carefully done. Seeing Shawn Ashmore as Iceman again brought joy to my heart as this was the Iceman I’ve wanted to see for so many years, he was cool and had some lovely moments. I was also glad to see my man Daniel Cudmore back as Peter Rasputin/Colossus, he was a joy to watch and it was nice to see him get some screen time even if he didn’t say much, and Halle Berry returns as Storm and while she doesn’t really do much beyond what we’ve seen in previous films, she is still has her moments to shine.

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Now let’s talk about the new people. Peter Dinklage as Bolivar Trask is very good, he is a man who is anticipating the future and wishes to keep the world save and in his mind he is the good guy for doing what he’s doing and creating the Sentinel programme. He’s smart, determined and kind of smug when it comes to his research and technology and Dinklage is just awesome. Evan Peters as Pietro Maximoff/Quicksilver was actually one of the best parts of the film, while the costume still looks a bit off, his performance and use of his character was very effective. Omar Sy as Bishop was really cool, I don’t really know anything about this character from the comics but he had a cool and badass screen presence and liked a lot of his action scenes. And finally Fan Bingbing stars as Clarice Ferguson/Blink and Booboo Stewart stars as James Proudstar/Warpath were lovely additions to this film universe, while there was a lot going on with other cast members I was happy that the got a decent amount of screen time too.

When it comes to the presentation it is very, very good. Visually the film is impressive, firstly you can also tell that this is a Bryan Singer film, the look, style of camera work and the use of visual effects is just like the stuff he did with the first two X-Men films, and I can tell you this guy knows his stuff. The action sequences are beautifully shot and framed, there are sequences both in the past and future that are worth talking about and they all look lovely. As for the soundtrack John Ottman returns to score the film and I can say it is nice to have him back, he gives this film the trademark film theme back which was a welcome return for me, however his soundtrack was just alright and doesn’t reach the epic and emotional heights of Henry Jackman’s work on First Class.

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In conclusion X-Men: Days of Future Past is a great comic book film, it takes the source material, adapts into a film format that bridges to worlds of X-Men films while also setting up for future X-Men films. While not everything works and some people cold have used more screen time, it is hard for me to criticise a film that gave me everything I could have wanted and then some. I left the cinema thinking to myself “I feel good about that film and I can’t wait for the sequel.” I highly recommend this film as it is X-Men in probably its finest hour. P.S. All I can say is thank god Bryan Singer didn’t mess this up, Mr. Singer you are alright again. ūüôā

Rating: 8.5/10

So what do you lot think of the X-Men: Days of Future Past? Have you seen it or are you gonna watch it? Also if you’re a fan of the series did it meet your expectations or were left disappointed. Leave your thoughts in the comments below and I’ll see ya on the next review. Laters! ūüėÄ

 
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Posted by on May 22, 2014 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Month of Superhero Film Reviews: X-Men 3: The Last Stand

Howdy ladies and gentlemen and welcome to Day #29 of my Month of Superhero Film Reviews! During this month I’ll be reviewing of some of the best and worst comic book adapted films. Okay so after one okay X-Men film and the brilliant second film, we now move onto the tragic disaster that X-Men: The Last Stand aka The Film That Fans Try to Forget About.

Good god man. X-Men: The Last Stand¬†is one of the films I actively try to avoid. This is a film that is infamous among comic book fans for its failure and horrible execution. I remember seeing X-Men 3 in the cinema and recall being very disappointed, but since then each time I’ve checked it out its gotten worse. Now I’ve had no reason to watch this in recent years, but thanks to this month of superhero films reviews I have to dive into the deep end again! And in 2013 this film sucks even worse than ever before.

In terms of the plot in X-Men 3 takes place some time after the last film. It is publicly announced  that there is now a cure for the mutants created in a secret laboratory supported by the government, it creates a divide in the mutant community. Some mutants are for the idea while others detest the idea. Magneto believes a war is coming and recruits a large team of mutants to take down Warren Worthington II and his cure. The X-Men have to stop him, though they are at a disadvantage because Jean Grey has returned as The Phoenix and joined with Magneto. So now on darkest of days the X-Men have to band together with what little team members they have left and take on the Brotherhood of Mutants.

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The story in this film just pisses me off SO MUCH! X-Men 2 worked so well as it just about had the right balance of characters, action and story, but somehow that good material got tampered with in the transition of writers and director. What we get in this film is a story that has tiny elements of interest, but the execution is simply poor. This film introduces a lot of new elements into play in terms of story, characters and some comic book aspects too, but none of it matters as it is not there long enough to matter. Some of the characters changed with no real explanation as to why or some just feel inconsistent when compared to its predecessor. Too many wrong decisions were made. Why in the hell was Cyclops killed off? Why was Angel introduced if he serves no proper purpose? Where’d Nightcrawler go? WHY FOR THE LOVE OF CHRIST DID PROFESSOR X HAVE TO DIE!?! Who thought that was a good idea? Fail, fail, fail!

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Why for the love of god did this have to happen? I’ll never get over this.

Now let’s talk about the cast. Let’s start with¬†Hugh Jackman¬†as Wolverine, while Jackman has his cool character moments overall his character as gone from awesome to very cruddy, and annoyingly Wolverine is still the main character in this film. I mean his story was technically wrapped up in the last film, so there is no reason for him to be at the forefront of the story yo. I understand that he has feelings for Jean Grey, but it gets to absurdly high level and it really pisses me off how much of a lovesick puppy he becomes especially after Cyclops dies, that is not in good taste at all.¬†Ian McKellen returns as again Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto, while McKellen still gives a good performance, I wasn’t keen on how cold he was and many silly decisions were made with his character.¬†Famke Janssen also returns from death as Jean Grey/Phoenix, in this film she’s a shadow of her former self and instead spends most of the film as the Phoenix, killing everyone that comes across he in the wrong way. Janssen was a right bitch in this film and obviously that was down to the character she was playing but even so there was no redeeming qualities about her in this film.

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Halle Berry definitely has more of a leader role as Storm, in this film she’s a lot more assertive and has way more dialogue than before, but the problem is that she still doesn’t fully own her leadership role and doesn’t fully utilize her weather powers and you’d think since she’s the only original member of the X-Men team she’d have a more important role but she’s really pushes aside. We also have a new member in the form of¬†Kelsey¬†Grammer¬†as¬†Dr. Henry “Hank” McCoy/Beast. He’s a former student of Xavier’s School who is now the Secretary of Mutant Affairs in the U.S. government. Grammer does good job at portraying the character even though I feel like he wasn’t totally utilized in the best way in my opinion.¬†Shawn Ashmore¬†as¬†Bobby Drake/Iceman is decent, he gets more screen time and gets to do more action, but in the end he’s not the version of Iceman I’d like to see. Also¬†Ellen Page shows up as the new Kitty Pryde, she’s good and has some decent moments in the film but I feel like her character doesn’t naturally fit into the film. And then there’s¬†Daniel¬†Cudmore¬†as¬†Peter Rasputin/Colossus, he goes from just having a cameo to being a full-on X-Men team member, but the problem is that he’s just there for fight scenes as we still don’t learn too much about the guy.

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Rebecca Romijn is still as hot and agile as Mystique, Romijin is good for the short time that she’s in the film but after she loses her powers she’s useless. It is darn shame too because I liked her too.¬†Aaron Stanford is still an arrogant hot-head as Pyro, his role has been increased in this film and while he has some wonderful action moments, I still think of him as that annoying douche who should have been taken out quickly.

Now we move onto the useless or completely wasted characters.¬†Anna Paquin¬†as Rogue has just been turned into a moping teenager whose jealous of Bobby and Kitty’s friendship. She feels alone because she can’t be intimate with anyone and yet she forgets about the fact that Wolverine was the first REAL friend she’s ever had, not only that but once the cure is announced she proper jumps on the bandwagon to get it without even considering any other options, such a waste of a character. And then there’s¬†Patrick Stewart¬†as¬†Professor Charles Xavier, Stewart is good but very much wasted due to him being killed off. WHY!?! And then we have¬†James Marsden¬†as Cyclops. Ah man in this film he’s even more of a pussy than before due to the death of Jean and then he finds her only to be killed off in the beginning of the film. I feel bad for Marsden as he is actually famous for this role and yet his character is butchered so badly and then done away with so swiftly that it sickens me. Also¬†Vinnie Jones¬†as Juggernaut is hilarious and has some funny moments but otherwise he’s another one of those throwaway characters. And lastly¬†Ben Foster¬†as¬†Warren Worthington III/Angel was just a pointless addition to the film, sure he has a bit of purpose because of his father’s plan for a cure, but Warren doesn’t do anything significant like join the X-Men or help in the major battle at the end of the film, which renders his appearance in this film pointless.

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Now let’s talk about the presentation. Visually the CGI is pretty good, but the presentation of Phoenix’s powers was badly handled (where’s the fire and why does she look like a demented alien woman?) and all of the action scenes were okay but none of them had any unique or stand out moments. As for the soundtrack by John Powell is not as nicely handled as it was in X-Men 2 and there are a lot of repeating themes throughout the film that are a little overbearing. The best song is “Angel’s Cure“, that piece is beautiful and dramatic.

And lastly how does it compare to the comics? Well as I’ve said before I know the X-Men mainly from the cartoons, a few comic books and Marvel Ultimate Alliance. From what I saw in this film there are a good few element from the comics kept and updated for the film. But I think that the main offender in this case is the handling of “The Dark Phoenix Saga” story arc in the comics that’s adapted into an original story, while it was an interesting idea, I feel like the way it was executed was very foolish and messy.

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So to conclude X-Men: The Last Stand is still one of the most disappointing and disgusting film in the realm of comic book films. It took the great material from the last film and completely shits on it with a terrible story, poorly handled character development and poor use of the source material. This is just a cluttered mess of a film that was forgotten about by comic book fans and audiences for a real. It sucked back then and it sucks right now! FAIL, FAIL, FAIL!

Rating: 4/10 (This film is the reason why the X-Men series needs to be rebooted damn it!)

So there’s my review people, only 1 more to go yo! So have you seen X-Men and if so what are your thoughts on it? Drop me a comment and let me know your thoughts yo! Come back tomorrow and I’ll have a new film review online, until then peace out!

 
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Posted by on June 29, 2013 in Film Reviews, Films, Media, Reviews

 

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Anna Paquin, Ellen Page and Shawn Ashmore Returning for X-Men: Days of Future Past

Ever since Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen were confirmed to come back in X-Men: Days of Future Past, fans have speculated about who else would be returning from the previous X-Men films. Soon after Hugh Jackman was said to be coming back as Wolverine, but to be honest everyone knew that was coming. However since then there hasn’t been anyone else announced and it has made some wonder if anyone else would be coming back at all, but now it seems we are getting even more familiar faces as this article from superherohype explains:

“Since the announcement of X-Men: Days of Future Past, the cast has continued to grow as actors from both the original X-Men and X-Men: First Class are set to appear in the film. Now even more alumni from the original films have been confirmed for the sequel. Director Bryan Singer tweeted this afternoon that Anna Paquin (Rogue), Ellen Page (Kitty Pryde), and Shawn Ashmore (Iceman) will all be back for the film. He then thanked X-Men: The Last Stand director Brett Ratner for having their characters survive.

What role these characters play in the plot is yet to be determined, but the return of Ellen Page as Kitty Pryde is a potential good omen as her character was a focal point of the original comic book storyline.

Other cast members confirmed to return for the movie include Ian McKellen, Patrick Stewart, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, and Hugh Jackman.

Scheduled for release on July 18, 2014, X-Men: Days of Future Past features a script by Simon Kinberg and is said to be inspired Chris Claremont and John Byrne’s comic book storyline that ran in “Uncanny X-Men” #141 and 142 back in 1981. “Days of Future Past” introduced the idea of an alternate future for Marvel’s mutants that grew out of the Brotherhood of Evil Mutants killing an important senator, leading to a future where all mutants are hunted by Sentinels.”

Well this both a surprise but at the same time to be expected. While I’m not too fussed about the return of Rogue (purely because in the films she wasn’t nearly as cool or interesting as she was in comics or 90s cartoon), but seeing the return of Iceman makes me smile (because he’s one of my favourite X-Men) and Kitty while I wasn’t too keen on her portrayal in the films I do like her comic book counterpart. Rouge and Iceman were good in X-Men 2 and I did like what they got to do in that film. However X-Men 3 made both of them along with Kitty characters I no longer respected which was mainly down to how their characters were handled and their lack of likeability. But what really bugged me was how much more there was to these characters in terms of personality and powers which were ignored completely.

Though I am happy that they’re back purely because comic book films have changed a lot since 2006, they’re treated more seriously with better stories, dialogue and action and just seeing how these characters could be upgraded on-screen makes my imagination all crazy. This could also be an occasion to apply some of their comic book elements and put them into the film. Well that’s highly doubtful that it’ll happen, but one can always live in hope.

 
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Posted by on January 26, 2013 in Films, Media

 

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