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X-Men: The Last Stand
May Disappoint Some.
X-Men: The Last Stand
Ian McKellen as Magneto in X-Men 3.
OPENING WEEKEND: $65,000,000
DOMESTIC TOTAL: $190,000,000
  This Film is NOT a Future Release.
  The Following Preview has been Archived.

December 26th, 2005: The general plot of X-Men 3 sounds similar to the two films that preceded it. Once again Professor X and his group of human-friendly mutants will find themselves in conflict with the more radical group headed by Magneto. This time, the two forces will battle over a cure for mutation. Of course, Magneto and his mutants disregard the rest of humanity since they see themselves as superior beings in the evolutionary ladder. The X-Men seek equality with humans and are determined to stop Magneto and his destructive ideals. All of the usual characters from the previous X-Men films return, with the exception of Nightcrawler. However, many new mutants will be added to the mix, including Angel, Juggernaut, Shadowcat and the Beast. The hairy, blue, brainy mutant will be played by Kelsey Grammer, who is an unexpected, but fine choice for the character. Grammer’s voice and persona alone are fitting for the part.

What to Expect: There will definitely be some rivalry during the summer between X-Men 3 and Superman Returns and not only because of the obvious Marvel vs. DC connection. The director of X-Men 3, Brett Ratner, was originally set to direct Superman Returns with Anthony Hopkins as his Lex Luthor. After some disagreements with the producers, he left the project and Bryan Singer, the director of the first two X-Men films, took over. Singer was expected to direct X-Men 3, but since the studio insisted on a 2006 release for the second sequel, they were not willing to wait for him to finish the Superman project. As a result, Singer chose Superman Returns and the producers of X-Men 3 picked up the now available Ratner (who by the way was strongly considered to direct the original X-Men a few years prior). How about giving a third party a chance? It will be interesting to see who will do a better job with their material.

Article continues below

So far, the first two films have done a good job of developing numerous characters and storylines and establishing a theme of conflicting viewpoints between two groups of mutants that could stretch out over many sequels. Inventive action sequences and the most colorful characters in all of comic book films flood the screen to keep the storylines fresh and entertaining. Unfortunately, the elements that make X-Men films good also constrict the series from achieving greatness. Specifically, the individual films don’t stand out on their own, as there are numerous loose ends and characters in both of the previous films that feel rather underdeveloped. There’s simply too many of them to handle without sacrificing significant screen time and plot development. This wouldn’t be a problem if the series were planned out for the long run and a little more cohesive as a whole (I wonder what the explanation will be for the disappearance of Nightcrawler). In fact, the entire franchise feels a little bit like one continuous mutant soap opera. How many more X-Men films are going to end in the “We’ll meet again Magneto/Xavier” vein before it becomes tired? I have a feeling that this is where X-Men 3 is headed – a set up for X-Men 4. However, having said all that, the fact remains that it has worked in the first two films and will probably work again, but don’t expect any closure.

Finally, there is the question of what Brett Ratner will bring to the project. For a while he was far from a serious director, preferring light buddy action/adventure comedies like Money Talks and the Rush Hour movies. They made a lot of money, but were hardly original and, in my opinion, not very funny. Having read somewhere that Ratner would have preferred to have even more obnoxious Chris Tucker moments over Jackie Chan’s physical inventiveness in the Rush Hour films, I wrote him off as a trivial director. All that changed in 2002 when Ratner eased a lot of worried fans’ minds and directed Red Dragon, the first part of the Hannibal Lecter trilogy, with the focus and style of an expert filmmaker. If he can bring the same sensibility to the new X-Men movie, it should be a quality sequel. Apparently, Ratner has even developed his very own mutant in the form of a sexy female who seduces other mutants rather than just simply fight them. Is this a sign of some Ratner silliness? An addition like this might worry the purist X-Men fans.

In Conclusion: In the end it probably will not matter. Ratner should do a good job and the movie should pave the way for another sequel. It will probably not outdo the previous two X-Men films and most likely Superman Returns will be the bigger hit of the summer, but the mutant soap opera will continue in style.

Similar Titles: X-Men 2, Fantastic Four
May 26th, 2006 (wide)
October 3rd, 2006 (DVD)

20th Century Fox

Brett Ratner

Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Halle Berry, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, Rebecca Romijn, Kelsey Grammer, Daniel Cudmore, Vinnie Jones, James Marsden, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, Ben Foster

Total: 128 vote(s).

Action & Adventure, Fantasy, Science Fiction

Click here to view site

Rated PG-13 for intense sequences of action violence, some sexual content and language.

104 min






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