MOVIE THEATER REVIEW: “Logan” stars Hugh Jackman (The Prestige, Prisoners), Patrick Stewart (Star Trek: The Next Generation [TV series], Blunt Talk [TV series]), Dafne Keen (The Refugees [TV series]), Boyd Holbrook (Run All Night, Gone Girl), Stephen Merchant (Tooth Fairy, Hall Pass), Elizabeth Rodriguez (The Drop, Miami Vice), Richard E. Grant (Bram Stoker’s Dracula, Corpse Bride), and Eriq La Salle (ER [TV series], Coming to America). It is directed by James Mangold (Walk the Line, The Wolverine), who also wrote it with Scott Frank (Minority Report , A Walk Among the Tombstones) and Michael Green (Green Lantern , Everwood [TV series]). The year is 2029; mutants are all but present in society, having mostly died off. Logan (Jackman) is trying to make his way, earning money to take him and Charles Xavier (Stewart) out to the sea. However, when a woman reaches out to him concerning a girl with special abilities, Logan’s plans are tarnished, having to deal with armed forces while keeping the girl safe.
“You still have time Logan.” With one of the greatest trailers ever under its belt, “Logan” was looking to excite its audience, not only because it’s Hugh Jackman’s supposed last outing as Wolverine, but also because it’s rated R, bringing the character to his destined brutal being. I’ve been waiting a long time to see this. While I’ve enjoyed almost all of the X-Men films, and “The Wolverine,” I was wanting to see Logan return to true form. In order to do that, this movie would have to rate above the normal superhero PG-13. I wouldn’t say that there were a lot of chips on the table for this release, being as how it gives off an Indie vibe, though I was wanting something great to top off Jackman’s career. Did I receive it? In most ways, yes. If you were wanting out-of-control violence and rage, you most certainly get it out of this story. The writers really wanted the character of Logan to give one final, brutal fight, never holding back on how he pulverizes his victims. I saw heads being sliced, claws going through their skulls, and blood being ripped out of their bodies. Most of the time I kept my composure, but there were some kills that had my blood curdle. Admittedly, I thought it was all awesome. Seeing Logan fight until he can’t no more, seething with pure anger is what I crave in his movies, and most of the time I have never really gotten this, until now. Thankfully, “Logan” makes up for all that time lost, throwing kill upon kill at us as an audience. Sure, not all viewers will enjoy this, but this movie was never meant to be everyone’s cup of tea. Moving away from the violence, let’s study this story. Topping off at two hours and twenty-one minutes, this plot sinks its teeth in a lot of material, all in developing Logan, his conflict, and the background to his issue. At its core, it’s a road trip movie, as Logan needs to get a girl to North Dakota in order to save her life, and along the way we discover certain plot points that flesh out the story around them. Most of it is necessary, while some could be tossed. The only reason why some of what is developed isn’t necessary is because it sets itself to be bigger than the story at hand, as if it’s meant to be carried out in another film. The trouble that surrounds the girl takes up most of this; I think that even though it develops her, it also sets itself apart from what truly matters. Anything that goes on in this film should be a final burial; a last hurrah, if you will. Introducing new stuff, and leaving the book open in some respects doesn’t give Logan the proper send-off he deserves. At the end of the day, this is supposed to be his departure; the weight of a franchise should not be on its shoulders, though some of the previous releases shouldn’t go unnoticed. There’s a lot that is mentioned in this that isn’t given explanation. What happened to all of the mutants? What did Professor X do a few years prior that was so bad? The writers did their best to keep their distance from the previous X-Men movies, even by placing itself in 2029, but I would’ve liked to know what happened. It’s not a major concern, but it’s my curiosity wanting to be fed. With what it does develop and give reason to, this is a solid release. The dialogue is interesting, it doesn’t spoon feed the audience everything, and there is enough edginess to impact you. I was thinking about this movie, and it’s ending, long after I left the theater. Speaking of the conclusion, it was definitely satisfying. This is a dark film, filled with little light or hope, and in some regards the ending shined some light. Some may not see it that way, but I did. There’s certainly a good deal of emotion behind this story, and there’s plenty to take part in. The acting that evokes this is incredibly good. Hugh Jackman, in his final bout as the beast with claws, does brilliantly. He provided enough grit and tenacity to bring this story home. Patrick Stewart did really good as well, playing a more scatterbrained Professor X. It was a different take from what I’m used to, and I liked it. Dafne Keen had a phenomenal breakout roll, with her performance being one of the best of a child’s that I have seen. As for the rest of the cast, I thought they all did well, including Boyd Holbrook and Stephen Merchant. Their performances were compelling. As for the aesthetics of this film, I thoroughly enjoyed the cinematography and color grading. It gave an independent movie feel, and even promoted a westernesque atmosphere, especially with its setting. I loved just looking at this feature as it looked beautiful in both day and night shots. This was an all-around solid, final endeavor into the life of Wolverine. It has gritty, bold action sequences that are choreographed masterfully, a gripping story, and killer acting that should make any superhero fan go crazy. When talking about issues I had with this film, the first one I would state is one I mentioned earlier. There are pieces to this story that beg to be explained or given another movie, and while it isn’t a terrible con, it was definitely not needed since this should focus more on ending Logan’s adventure than starting another one for someone else. Secondly, it can get slow in pacing, especially in the second act. Logan, Professor X, and Laura travel quite a ways, coming across some conflict that can take this plot many places. While I enjoyed a lot of scenes, it still dragged in some spots. Finally, some of the plot devices can be predictable. There’s certain things that were done by way of direction and dialogue that definitely made it hard to be shocked, which I won’t go into detail as to what those are, due to spoilers. All in all, this is still the best Wolverine film to date, and quite possibly the best X-Men movie to (if you would count it as that). I had immense fun in watching it, and while I am bummed that Hugh Jackman is hanging up the claws, I give him major props to the performance he has given us in this film. Thank you Jackman, Stewart (who is resigning as Professor X), and the team who had crafted this nice picture. FINAL SCORE: 91%= Juicy Popcorn
Here is the trailer: