So yeah I made this post a few months ago but I can now up date it with the recent X-Men Apocalypse and the presumed conclusion of Bryan Singers’ new X-Men trilogy and while my scores may not have changed at all since the last post, the list will be different now with Apocalypse so here goes.
X-Men First Class – 8/10
Although level on an 8/10 rating, First Class is my joint favourite film in the franchise alongside X2. First Class is the franchises re-boot point in essence and it works well in bringing the X-Men to the past, while still presenting a compelling story, seeing Xavier and Eriks developing relationship come rivalry is great, as is seeing the foundations of the X-Men we’ve come to know and love. First Class brought the rejuvenation that the franchise badly needed, set in the swinging 60s at the height of the cuban missile crisis with tensions high and humans fearful of mutants (as ever). The film isn’t full of but has some great action and set pieces which are made better with the match ups of different mutants and different abilities.
And I loved seeing mutants not seen on the big screen before like Havok, Azazel and Banshee, expanding the mutant film roster as it were and not solely focusing on the traditional X-Men roster. And importantly we got to see Magneto and played fantastically by James Mcavoy, Michael Fassbender, seeing their friendship and tragic but inevitable separation, meanwhile Kevin Bacon makes a surprisingly good villain as Sebastian Shaw.
X2 – 8/10
What can I say, X2 is the pinnacle of great action with some of the most memorable and iconic in the X-Men franchise with some great drama, humour and of course thrilling set pieces with Wolverine at his best. Full of great characters and a very good story with some pretty tense scenes, that work well because of the plots execution and the way it effortlessly moves from scene to scene, definitely flying by. It’s great seeing classic X-Men together and fighting for the same goal and the cast is really on their A-game, Stryker is an awesome villain for the plot and poses a threat to mutants as a whole, bringing Magneto and his ideals together with the X-Men which makes for an interesting dynamic. X2 flourishes with a plethora of mutants in the story who all feel unique and get a decent amount of screentime, showcasing their own unique abilities, a great balancing act and a great film.
X-Men Days Of Future Past – 8/10
Days Of Future Past represents the franchises’ ambition in going to very different places and settings with different X-Men stories and it definitely payed off, the feel of the film was that of classic X-Men with the team battling seemingly impossible odds and using creative methods to do so, with time travel in this case. Seeing a continuation of past Xavier and Eriks’ stories and relationship was great, as was seeing a plethora of X-men mutants in the future, Days Of Future Past brought together things fans had wanted to see and it was a fairly faithful adaptation of the comic story, being an engaging story with some great set pieces and some well emotional points. Mystique almost steals the show as one of the big players this time around and again the cast is on their A game.
X-Men Apocalypse – 7/10
The latest film in the X-Men seems to not be so hot as far as critics go but I actually enjoy it to a fair degree, it’s larger than life, the stakes haven’t been higher and Apocalypse is genuinely menacing albeit without doing too much, there’s a host of mutants here with old veterans mixed in with new, younger re-cast characters who all fit in their roles really well. Xavier and Magnetos’ relationship is again a feature here but not necessarily centre stage, taking a back stage to Apocalypse and his plans and how he goes about things makes for some grand set pieces, cool action sequences and while the plot isn’t particularly deep, it’s still a fun adventure with well worked humour, great interaction among the new look X-Men and a promising future for the franchise if it’s to continue.
X-Men – 7/10
X-Men is a pretty good film, often overlooked when people think about the trilogy, it’s a great starting point for everything and has some great set pieces, great dialogue and is a very well put together film, it does some great world building and sets up things to come establishing the mutants we know and love with a deft touch. It’s a great starting off point for the franchise and it has the contained feeling of a classic X-Men story with Xavier Vs Magneto, the X-Men facing off against the Brotherhood of mutants executed well, with some fun set pieces and a whole lot of ambition.
Being the first live action superhero film of the modern era and following Batman and Robin in movie goers recent memory was no mean feat but X-Men went in head first and the results have more than paid off as we now see.
The Wolverine – 7/10
The Wolverine is the second best solo mutant film to date (Deadpool) easily taking the first place but it’s a solid film, putting Logan in a different setting and a very different situation, we see different sides to the character and most importantly, see him being Wolverine at some of his best with some great action. It’s not the most memorable X-Men related film but a good watch.
X-Men The Last Stand – 6/10
The Last Stand is… disappointing, falling far short of the heighs reached by X2, the film took an awesome X-Men story in the Phoenix saga and rushed it into a final film in a trilogy alongside the cure storyline which just didn’t work. The set pieces in the film are decent though quite cheesy and there is a feeling of finality to everything but the conclusion is far from satisfying and the plot itself is stretched way too thin to satisfy fans of the series.
X-Men Origins: Wolverine – 6/10
Origins was an unfortunate film, cashing in on the desire to see more backstory to Wolverine and include more mutants in the story, the films plot simply wasn’t that interesting and had one too many cheesy lines and throwaway characters, including Will.I.Am, seriously remember how Will.I.Am is in the movie? Though to be fair it did have some decent action scenes in it and it had Ryan Reynolds as Deadpool, a fun character that he’s now getting to portray properly.