Logan Movie Review
Wow, for a movie like Logan it is hard to do no-spoiler, but I’ll give it a shot with so much to say about our first taste of what comic movies for 2017 have to offer. I hate to say it this early but Logan is going to be the movie to beat. Some had their skepticism about Logan because there was no way this could be like the actual book. That is something you have to go in understanding from the start. They made this movie their own and the movie only benefited from this. It got my heart racing, it filled me up with emotion, and it felt like the perfect send-off to Hugh Jackman playing this role.
Off the bat, these days it is hard to use the words R-rated and actually feel as though they mean it. In the case of Logan they meant every bloody minute of the action was exactly what you wouldn’t take your kid to see. Of course that still doesn’t stop them as I saw enough kids walking through despite the violence and endless cussing. Which brings me to the other thing I loved about the movie. It recognized that success without the MCU depended on what they focused on. That meant a manageable cast that could set itself within a mutant world without the need to forcefully attach the words X-Men to it. This is of the X-Men franchise, yet that didn’t mean they had to make it feel too much like a superhero book. It matched the kind of writing you enjoyed from the book itself which strayed away from a world where there are heroes. Just people.
Hugh Jackman will be missed for pulling off such a memorable role as Logan. I have my problems with the X-Men movie franchise as a whole, but even I can admit that he was always right for this role. Maybe actually more for the role of Logan rather than Wolverine. I had to really sit on that one though Jackman does in fact play Logan way better than Wolverine. All the movies before failed him because they tried so hard to make the name Wolverine stick without really getting what is Wolverine at the core. However this here was masterful. We see Logan as a man who is haunted by the past. That is the defining trait of Logan that some forget. No matter how much good he does or tires to do, it doesn’t scrub a past which has a way of catching up with him. This time it just so happened to be in the form of a little girl named Laura. It’s not just this either, what some will also forget is that there is even a difference between Logan and Old Man Logan. Old Man Logan is the version of him we get in this movie who has been through some sh*t. Which means little in the grand scope of Wolverine’s character history, but for Old Man Logan this means the kind of sh*t where you break.This is the deepest exploration that we’ve had of a character like Logan in a movie and I do hope that others take note of this.
The way Logan interacted with so many characters is what made this so tense. A broken man doesn’t always sit in a corner in depression, that’s just not everyone. This Logan Hugh Jackman portrayed was un-tethered and unfiltered to speak everything Wolverine/Logan was probably too chained to say to most people aside from Cyclops. The same could shockingly be said about Patrick Stewart’s Charles. I’ve never loved the character more because this is what you get when you drops his ball and chain that is the title Professor. You get this man who inspires hope, active engagement in the little things, and above all staying true to who you are at even the worst of times. That last part you could say the same for when it came to Caliban. He was a standout that you didn’t expect to grab your attention as much as he did.
X-23 or Laura was the only character I felt I needed to see first in order to fall in love with the same as everyone else. Someone like me is more used to how much older she was, even if just a little. Age sometimes matters when that character is someone who is molded by all the cruelty she was put through. Yet age didn’t stop Dafne Keen from making you fall on every action of hers throughout. It was like looking in a mirror when Logan had little control over himself in the past. the action could have been all you looked forward to as well, but from the moment she spoke you hung on every word that spoke to this girl who is only seen as a thing. The human element from Laura was engaging as this was a learning experience. She had an effect on Charles, and so much more on Logan who again is too broken to handle someone like her.
As far as villains go, its hard to say how Donald Pierce influenced the movie. He and the others at his command do provide the perfect threat, though to say his character really stood out like the others above would be false. Now with that said I wouldn’t say this is a problem as I am not a firm believer that the villain should be as important as the hero(es). Spending too much time developing the villain takes away from what you actually came there to see. This isn’t one of those times where we needed to understand the villain or their motivations. We just needed to see the danger they posed to Logan, Professor and everyone else. Pierce and the rest did this and much more as it’s not everyday that bringing guns to a fight with claws knocks you at the edge of your seat like this.
The action in general was over the top, but also nothing like what you see from other comic book movies which was the main attraction. We saw a good bit of action from just the trailers, though that barely scratched the surface of what the actual scenes looked like. That was what it should like when you see anyone like Logan or Laura springing into action. And don’t even get me started on what knocks you out of your seat about this Charles. That is something you have to prepare yourself for not only the way it literally shakes you, but the visual effect a well.
At the end of the day Logan speak to what I have been saying many times about comic book movies. You can do new, you can take your own initiative, some liberties here and there, but never forget who those characters are. Logan succeeds because they stayed true to everything you love about thee characters and what it means to be a mutant in the world. There’s no happy ending, and Old Man Logan is one of those worst case scenarios.