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"Oh no. Is that dragon thing behind me?"
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May 26 2006

(SPOILER) X-Men: The Last Stand out in US cinemas today. Given the movie's history, it seems fitting that there's Joss references in the reviews. The Washington Post said the movie is "Buffy... with car crashes". And what of one of the movie's key plot points which came from Astonishing X-Men? Well some reviews refer to it as being "somewhat inspired", "based loosely", "pulled from" or quite simply "swiped" from the comic book. Given all that, one reviewer ponders "wouldn't Whedon have been the perfect director for this?".

Remember all the speculation about Joss directing this movie? Only seems like we were talking about it yesterday.

Anyhow if you missed it first time round, head over to the SFX website where Joss talks about the use of his plotline, his ideas for the movie and his hopes for the third X-Men movie.

By the way you can watch nearly half the movie through (legal) clips and trailers on the web. Very strange marketing. Take a look at the end of my thread here (including a full seven minutes sponsored by Dell?)
It is great that Joss is getting more credit on this film than the one he actually wrote. Seems like they need the cred on this one. hmmmm.
"Sacrifices socio-political relevance for flashy pyrotechnics and visceral pleasures galore."

...Is the general summation of the reviews I've read.

Please excuse me whilst I don't die of surprise.

It'll still open huge, as the marketing machine is in full swing, but the 2nd week drop will be higher than usual.
Considering all the negative buzz that Whedon's draft of the first film got, I think it's good that his stuff from that was downplayed, considering how very little of it made it into the movie. (One of those bits being that notorious "do you know what happens to a toad when it's struck by lightening?" line, even if it was apparently mis-delievered. No Wal-Mart showdown for us, which really has me curious if the entirety of his draft is online anywhere...)

It's nice to see that people are acknowledging the story roots though, remind them that the comics still actually exist.
Well done rounding up the articles, Simon! I'm sure I'll be seeing this, no matter what the reviews say, but I have to say that the commercials and trailers I've seen have not thrilled me. I hope that it does have some Joss-ish goodness in it, even though it would have been like a million times better with actual Joss-y goodness, of course. ;-)
Simon, Great Description.
Seeing it today, already got my tickets. Also heard comments that varied from inspired to messy.
God, all that fuss about Joss directing it, how long ago was it? And that little thing with Summer auditioning to the movie?
Time does go fast.
The film is rushed. It's crammed. It lacks resonance. A missed opportunity. We can only dream of what a Whedon X-Men movie would have turned out like.
I'm seeing this on Saturday. The trailers look awesome, but I'm not expecting too much. I do love me some Patrick Stewart, so I don't think I'll be too disappointed.
It's a good movie. Plain and simple a good X-Men movie, much more X-Men than the first two were. Anyway when Warren Worthington the 2nd is introducing the cure to the public, his dialogue is nearly identical at times to the speech at the end of AXM 1. It's kinda funny.
I liked it alot. It seems that i'm more a fan of Brett's vision of the X-men then Bryan's.
Just a heads up to anyone going to see the movie. There's a 30 second segment after the credits finish so hang around for that bit.
I just got back from the midnight showing here locally. I'm really disappointed. The X1 was great. X2 wasn't quite X1 but still good. X3 probably should have been put on hold after they ran into their director problems.

I felt that the story was weak and definately rushed. Several of the characters who really were worth developing further were turned into window dressing for other minor characters. I thought that it was kind of cheesy for characters who were written in as nods to the comics being brought to the forefront without any real development or introduction to them. At times it almost seems like the original cast of X1 and X2 could have skipped showing up to this movie altogether.

Although the movie was left open for a sequel like all the previous ones, I doubt that there will be one.
I seem to be going link mad today. If you missed it the first time round, there's a great Joss Whedon/Mark Millar conversation about the AXM plotline, Joss' version of the movie and his high hopes for the Ratner film over at the SFX website.
Very surprised by some of the comments here regarding this franchise. X2 for me is not only the best X-Men movie to date but very possibly the best Superhero movie ever made. Superman has the magic and Spider-man has the kinetics. But X2 has a great story, compelling arcs and something to say. X3 feels like a Bruckheimer version of X-Men. Nothing wrong with Bruckheimer but X Men can be so much more. The first one was great but when seen now it feels like an extended intro for the majesty of X2.

And if you like Dark Phoenix - well she's not in this movie. At all. Sure Jean Grey goes bad but Phoenix isn't there. The goose bumps at the end of X2 as a new life is born in that lake? Patrick Stewart's smile as he senses it? The outline of a shimmering star creature? Wasted.

[ edited by Andy Dufresne on 2006-05-26 11:27 ]
Just got back. I didn't read any comments or reviews before I went, and I have to say, I'm a bit surprised at all the negative ones. I really enjoyed it. A bit silly and implausible, sure, but it's an X-Men movie, so I was expecting that going in. But I like the cast, I like that they don't go the way of the completely cartoonish villain, and I like that they're willing to kill main characters. I was even genuinely shocked at a couple of points, which is rare for action movies. :-)

Also, how Buffy/Angel was that ending?
I'm seeing this on Monday evening at which point I'll be able to give an honest personal opinion but for now I have to say that I'm surprised by just how extremely varied the reviews are. It seems to be fairly evenly split between those that absolutely loved it and those that think it was the worst X-movie to date. That bodes well, in my opinion.

I'm far from being a big movie follower and so when it was announced that Brett Ratner was on the project I was pretty much "Who?", having never heard of the guy before. There again, I haven't a clue who most movie directors are or what movies they were responsible for. I hardly ever even go see a movie (if I have a free evening and some money in my pocket then I'll be at a gig, not sat in a movie theatre) but on the rare occasion that a movie is released that I actually care about (in recent memory that would be any Marvel movie, the Lord of the Rings trilogy and, oh yeah, Serenity) I'll watch it and decide whether I like it or not at the end. I could care less who made the thing (except in the case of that Serenity thing, naturally).

What that means is that I'm one of those people who gets to go into seeing this movie with absolutely no preconceptions about it's quality based on Ratner's history. Chances are I've never even seen his previous movies anyway. All I care about is that the film remains true to the previous two and, more importantly, to the source material. From the little I've read, I'm not going to be disappointed.

The reason the reviews are varied seem to me down to the fact that if you're a huge X-men fan (comics, movies, or animated series) you will feel let down by the squandering of potential. If you're not, it seems that X3 is an entertaining action adventure movie.
I'm not so sure about that, Andy. I'm a massive X-Men fan and I have been for the better part of two decades now. The little I've personally seen of the movie has impressed me so far although obviously I'll reserve my true opinion until I've actually seen the film in full.

Having said that, the majority of my friends who now have had the chance to see the film and who are also long time fans of the comics are telling me that they absolutely loved it. I've heard a few negative comments but for the most part the X-Men comic fans that I know are giving it the thumbs up.

Bottom line, I really don't think the negative comments are necessarily going to be coming from those that read the comics.
Fair enough. We've obviously had different experiences. The X fans I went with detested it. I liked it in parts but I hought it was incredibly disappointing.
Which I guess is my point. We both have a group of friends that are very much fans of the X-Men. Your group hated the movie whilst the people I know seem to have loved it.

I just didn't think that your suggestion that all huge X-fans are going to hate this movie was being especially fair or accurate. The line won't be that clear cut, I promise you.
"wouldn't Whedon have been the perfect director for this?".

No. I saw this last night. I though the Brett Ratner did a great job.
Most of the film's problems come from the script. I think that a Joss Whedon script would have made this so much better.

And for those interested, I think X3 is very good, but it had the potential to be great.

"She's like Blackadder with boobs."

Hmm, sounds like Bob.

The main problem with the script was the lack of David Hayter. That guy is chawesomeness.

But yeah, I loved the movie. Better than the first, not as good as the second (and I will get sick of saying that soon). I was surprised by certain events, and really hope that this becomes a five set movie. Five just sounds like a really nice number.

It was like a weird mixture of Whedon/Cassaday's Gifted, Claremont/Byrne's Dark Phoenix Saga, and Morisson/Jiminez's Planet X, only more down to Earth, and really, adding in aliens and a mutant who took an aerosol form would just be needlesly complicated.

<3 Patrick Stewart so much so much. And I hope that Moira comes back for no. 4.
I haven't seen this yet. Most of the bad reviews seem to be overstating the "greatness" of the first two films. Personally, I felt the first film was an incoherent mess, with poor special effects, saved entirely by hugh jackman, Ian mckellan, and patrick stewart. The 2nd one was much much better, and actually served to make the first film seem better than it is.
I'm going to go see this tomorrow. I've read ALOT of spoilers but I'm still looking forward to it just cause I'm a X-fan. (boy do I wish Singer could've finished this trilogy, though.)
Two things I didn't like about the first two X-Men films is that Professor X either got unconscious or kidnapped for the most of the time and the main plots were quite frankly rubbish. The acting was superb, dialogue wonderful, sets were amazing just the plot was awful.
I agree that its lame that they instantly remove Professor X from the action but isnt that what happens in most of the comicbook story lines? However,if he were actually in the fray, it would be a really short movie...he would have all the bad guys sucking their thumbs and thinking they were 2 year old kids.
I saw the third today and thought it was great - I enjoyed it, but time will tell whether I think it stacks up against the first two

Ellen Page was the best thing about it - she outshone all the others, acting wise, and she had a couple of the best lines - I think Joss would've been so proud
I saw it as well at a midnight screening this *yawn* morning, and find myself giving it a solid B-. It definitely shows the *rushed* aspects of changing directors twice while sticking to the original schedule, but it moves fast and has tons of fun stuff. I find the comparisons between X-Men and the Original Trilogy to be pretty darn reasonable.....Rattner is what he is, a serviceable director. He has no real *vision* to speak of, never has, if you look at any of his other films, so to expect anything more is, perhaps, unwise. He's a relief pitcher, and he didn't blow the save (apologies for the baseball reference).
I think the thing that's ticking off a lot of fans is the ultimate treatment of the Dark Phoenix storyline, something which I'm not keen about at all.

If only Singer had directed it, we actually might have gotten the actual Dark Phoenix.
Extremely classy take on the whole project and director by Joss, considering what's probably gone on behind the scenes and the 'inspiration' he provided for the new plot. Good karma for his own upcoming comic book movie, methinks.

I was far enough removed from my X-Men reading days when the first two finally came out that I could enjoy them for what they were without holding them to any particularly high standard...the first was somewhat of a miracle considering the time constraints the production was put under, so I cut it a lot of slack for things like mediocre effects and a completely unmemorable score. The second one really did come together nicely from a plot/villain/character standpoint, and certainly provided a magnificent setup for X3. The project not being gift-wrapped and gently placed in Joss' lap was a major disappointment if not outright crime. Ratner's always struck me as a guy who doesn't really write much and just sets up 20 cameras for each scene so he can sort it out in the editing room (Hopkins observed this tendency on the set of Red Dragon), not exactly a visionary with anything in particular to say. Then again, he was given a similarly ridiculous timeline by Fox for this production and appears to at least have maintained the visual style of the first two. As pointed out in the Joss interview, he really is getting ripped to shreds by geek nation and probably deserves some slack. My expectation is for a popcorn movie, nothing more. I suspect I won't be disappointed, although to think of what could have been in the hands of someone quite a bit more qualified will probably continue to sting long after the end credits roll.
I think the thing that's ticking off a lot of fans is the ultimate treatment of the Dark Phoenix storyline, something which I'm not keen about at all.

Yeah, most comic fans seem to be upset that the script apparently takes all these great comic book storylines and new characters and in mixing them all together does little justice to any of them. That if the script writers had just focused on adapting just one of these big storylines it could have been a really incredible movie, instead of a lot potential that is never realized.

As Harry from Aint It Cool News says in his review, it's like if the people involved in the Bond franchise instead of making the incredible Goldfinger (the 3rd James Bond movie) they decided to mix Goldfinger, Thunderball, You Only Live Twice, On Her Majesty's Secret Service and Moonraker, all together for a mess of a movie.

Note, I haven't seen the movie yet and this isn't my opinion on the movie, but this is what I've heard from a lot of people on comic book message boards. Many who rushed out to see the movie last night and were really disappointed with how bad the movie was.
There was never any chance of going with the original concept of the Dark Phoenix, simply because it uses elements of the X-Men mythos that the movies have purposely avoided. In the X-Men version we see in the movies there are no cosmic beings or alien races, just humans born with fantastic powers.

The fact is that if they had attempted to add the cosmic elements of the comic version of the Phoenix story it would have meant dealing with an awful lot of information that many of the non-comic reading audience wouldn't understand. To them, the X-Men are not a part of the larger Marvel Universe and all the various powers are a result of genetic mutations. Trying to explain the fact that Jean had been replaced by a cosmic entity and left in a capsule under the ocean would have been asking a little too much of anyone who wasn't aware of the comics.

And where do you stop with the details? Do you then choose to include the Shi'Ar? Lilandra? Does "Jean" have to die on the moon? It is simply way too big a story for any movie to do it justice. I think they made the right choice in taking the basic idea of the Phoenix Saga and recreating it to fit with the more down to earth version of the X-Men seen in the movies, sticking with mutation rather than cosmic beings and the like.
FYI for those who may have missed it, a very interesting piece Moriarty at AICN wrote last year on Fox's treatment of the franchise...I've always thought back to this piece when I get too down on Joss not being involved, maybe it was for the best.
And where do you stop with the details? Do you then choose to include the Shi'Ar? Lilandra? Does "Jean" have to die on the moon? It is simply way too big a story for any movie to do it justice. I think they made the right choice in taking the basic idea of the Phoenix Saga and recreating it to fit with the more down to earth version of the X-Men seen in the movies, sticking with mutation rather than cosmic beings and the like.

I haven't seen the movie yet myself so it's hard to argue on how well they did one thing or another, basing it one bits of pieces of what I heard about the movie without getting too far into spoilers that I've been avoiding. However, it's my understanding that the Dark Phoenix storyline is more of a sub-plot of the movie and becomes sort of a background character for a good part of the movie, when it could have been the main focus. Get rid of all the aliens and battles on another planets from the comic book and you still have a story about a character who has suddenly become the most powerful person in the world. Enough power to very easily destroy whole countries or even the whole planet on a whim and is losing her mind from her near death experience. I think that's enough for a great 2 hour movie, without all sorts of extra storylines thrown in.

Once again, since I haven't seen the movie I can only take this arguement so far and I could be proven quite wrong and disagree with what people are saying once I get around to seeing it myself this weekend.
I think they could have done a two hour movie about Dark Phoenix alone, but personally I'm glad they didn't. As a non-comics reader, at least, I found the real world intrigue (as sketchily done as it is) the more interesting part of the movie; Phoenix throwing people around with her mind was fun for a while, but eh.
The thing is that I never got the impression that the Phoenix Saga was ever going to be anything more than a sub-plot, no matter what.

The three X-movies were intended as a trilogy and so the final movie was always going to be about a much larger issue than just Jean Grey. I suppose if they had gone with the idea of making it a five movie series then they would have had the luxury of time and have been able to devote an entire movie to a single character but as things stood it was necessary for the final movie of the three to provide a real conclusion to the events of the previous two. How well they have managed to do that I have yet to see but I believe that including the Phoenix concept at all was probably more difficult than anyone might have imagined, given the time constraints.

If it had been up to me then I would probably have left out all mention of the Phoenix because quite honestly there was no chance of being able to deal with the story in a fashion that would please the fans of the comics, and the rest of the audience wouldn't care either way. I loved the story in the comics but I felt absolutely no need to see it occur in the movies at all.
I'm both a fan of the comics and one of the people who was vehemently and utterly horrified by the idea of Brett Ratner directing X3, but ultimately, I was pleased with what we got. It wasn't a perfect flick, but, while I'm a fan of the first two, neither are they. The interpretation of Dark Phoenix was a reasonable adaptation (it's technically a subplot, I suppose, but just about rivals the cure for screentime), there's a good balance of old and new characters (second the Ellen Page love, aapac) and stories and, honestly, I'd say, to echo a sentiment somewhere up top, it felt the most X-Men of the franchise. Also, I applaud some of the choices they made in regard to... ah, well, that would be telling.

So, in short, I'm exactly the kind of viewer Ratner and co. should have been dreading, but they won me over.
Could Joss had done it better? I quess that's the question we're kicking around. In my short note, no. Not in the time that was allowed for this picture to be directed. If Joss was chosen to direct this movie from the beginning, things would be very different. But, that wasn't the case and that's my end on it. Quite a shame really.
It's a fun popcorn flick that I enjoyed more than the original X-Men. It's also a lot more rewatchable than X2 was.
I was overall pleased with the movie itself. Not the best in the series, but it did the movie mythology justice. I really think the X-Men mythologies need to be separated into two categories: original comics, and films - and thereby judged independantly. The stories of the comics and the themes of the film really are the same, just told very differently. In my opinion, they are both great stories with familiar characters that are so endearing to us on so many levels.
The X-men premise needs two things to work well in live action: Creators who care about canon and don't merely go fishing in the 40 year history of the premise for cool bits here and there; and plenty of time for character development.

Hopefully the X-Men will get the TV serial treatment someday (or at least a mini-series or two) so these great characters can truly florish. And when that day comes, hopefully Joss will be interested in running the show. If so, I think they should even keep the Astonishing X-Men title!

At present, the make-up and special effects required to pull off live-action X-Men are cost prohibitive which is a shame! It's the perfect medium for our mutants to thrive in.

I think Joss was smart not to pursue X3 given the short turnaround time on that project but it sounds (from the AICN reviews expecially) as if the film could have used his expertise when it came to the character moments.
I just saw the movie and would give it a solid B. I was decent, and quite entertaining at times, but it could have been more. I think the observations that it focused too much on fight scenes and special effects is accurate. I think we are tending to watch the movie with "If Joss had written and directed this..." in the backs of our minds. I enjoyed it, and wouldn't mind seeing it again, but if Joss had written and directed this... I would have planned to see it many times in the theatres.
Simon, thank you so much for posting that SFX interview. I hadn't seen it before & it was wonderful.
My daughter pointed out that in the movie, they had Angel and Spike. Also, the actress who played Callisto (Dania Ramirez) was a potential slayer in Buffy.
My problem with the X-Men movies has been that they pretty much just treated Magneto like a straight villain, particularly in the second. That whole "kill off all non-mutants" move is a pretty significant departure from the character elsewhere.
I'll agree with The Dark Shape about the rewatch value of X2. I initially liked it, but having seen it a few times since I fell out of love.
I saw X3 yesterday and it feels like it had a lot of potential but didn't manage to follow through. A lot of it was due to the script. There were some really good ideas, but it ended up feeling rushed. The editing also felt rushed, mainly where the characters were supposed to have their "moments".

Also, I think the deaths would've been a lot better if they actually made me care (I assume they had a lot more impact on people who are fans of the comics), now I just kinda shrugged and felt... nothing. Was I the only one who kept wondering if they could be reassembled somehow? Or am I just really slow on the uptake, because I kept expecting them to come back (possibly combined in a scary and unsettling fashion).

I still have to say that the movie was enjoyable, it just feels like it could've been so much more.
I think my appreciation of X2 actually grew as I watched it again and again. I absolutely love that movie. It's probably one of my favourite movies of all time, not that it has an awful lot of competition in that. Maybe School of Rock might compete ... possibly Serenity ... hmmmm. I did mention before that I don't watch a great number of movies, right? :)

kishi, as a big fan of Magneto myself I have to agree that it is a shame that the movies didn't show more of the depth of the character that exists in the comics, choosing instead to go back to the earliest incarnation of Magneto from the sixties and early seventies X-Men books. I get why they wanted to have an obvious "bad guy" figure but it did seem that they missed an awful lot of what makes him such an excellent and tragic character.
Just got back from the flick, and damn, I'm glad I at least liked it. It's an admittedly slight movie, and has absolutely nothing on the first two, but it is enjoyable. The Dark Phoenix storyline is a little botched, but as a movie, it was a bit of fun to watch, even though the whole time I was thinking how they could've done it better.

However, I still liked it. The last pre-end credits scene is great.
I went to see this with friends tonight. We survived it only by making fun of it, and guessing every. single. line before it was on-screen. Because the movie may be cool and stuff, with lots of explosions and CGI magic, but the writing... oy vey! So lame! So much like every other Hollywood movie, like, ever! I swear there was about two good lines in the whole thing.

But anyway....


How original and refreshing was that ending, ey?

First she doesn't know her own strength, then she kills a guy, then she makes the world end, until Xander - I mean Logan, stands in front of her magic - I mean mutant powers, says he loves her, and makes her stops.

Sheesh. Why not just give her a yellow crayon and be done with it?

dreeze: Did you see the scene at the end of the credits?

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2006-05-27 04:32 ]
How original and refreshing was that ending, ey?

First she doesn't know her own strength, then she kills a guy, then she makes the world end, until Xander - I mean Logan, stands in front of her magic - I mean mutant powers, says he loves her, and makes her stops.

Sheesh. Why not just give her a yellow crayon and be done with it?

Hey, yeah, because Buffy was the first thing to ever do that, huh! The X-Men: Animated Series from the 90's did that (only it was everyone who used their love). The original ending for the Dark Phoenix saga was similar to that. And plenty of non-X-Men things have don it as well.
I saw the movie in a midnight screening... yes, it did feel a bit forced. However I was so impressed that they simply gutted the franschise! You'd think with all the hoopla and cash around these characters...
Kitty Pryde didn't get as much time as I would have assumed... although it beats James Marsden's! =)
I missed the secret insert after the credits! Anyone want to spill it?
Anyone who saw the movie but missed the post-credits bit (please, don't read if you ain't seen the movie):

First she doesn't know her own strength, then she kills a guy, then she makes the world end, until Xander - I mean Logan, stands in front of her magic - I mean mutant powers, says he loves her, and makes her stops.

Sheesh. Why not just give her a yellow crayon and be done with it?

The X-men was always a big influence on Buffy, but the end of season 6 was very much influenced by the Dark Phoneix saga. So much so that Andrew (I think it was him... maybe it was one of the other characters) references it in one of the final episodes when he says Willow is going all Dark Phoneix on them.

I didn't actually hate it or even roll my eyes at it, but I did think it was ripped from about 3 different places.

On the whole, I can't decide if I give the movie a B- or a C+. It wasn't the disaster I feared, but it wasn't a very good movie either, though it had great moments. It's kinda the Phantom Menace of X-Men movies. The director didn't seem concerned with getting good character moments, just good action, and that he did (that's why these movies do have great trailers).

Ellen Page was indeed a great Kitty Pryde. She has the youth, the vulnerability (not to be mistaken for weakness), and the all-important snark (well, I've read AXM more than anything else, so maybe that's just Joss' Kitty). Also importantly, she comes off as very intelligent (not because of that silly line she has in the classroom, but because of her own screen presence). I think she's just about perfect for the part, and (please don't hurl objects at me) probably even better than Summer Glau might have been. I would totally go see a whole Kitty Pryde movie starring Ellen Page. If it was written/directed by Joss, well that just might be the bestest movie ever. So yeah, she was great, and I wish there'd been more of her.
Just back, from not one but two sessions. The first one was for myself and my comic book geekness, the second time, was something that my friends conviced me to do.

I actually had fun (the second time, I actually had more fun with my friends reactions to the movie). It wasn't a great movie, It felt choppy, rushed, like it was missing something, a little bit empty, but still enjoyable.

I did go with an open mind, and already with the knowledge of several reviews that ranged from "what a crapfest" to "that's the best one of the series", and also knowing about the script draft reviewed at AICN about a year ago or so.

That movie wasn't the same from the draft that AICN reviewed, but a lot of things were still kept in there including (I'll use invisio-text since those are pretty big events in the movie): . Back when I read the review, the first thought that came to my mind, was that movie would be simply unwatchable. Which definetely lowered my expectations for the movie.

After a few trailers and that 5 minute preview at the Dell site, I was intrigued, and got a bit more excited about it. From the comic references point of view, the movie seemed a collage of several different sources: . The collage melded well, but still made the whole concept choppy. The result was actually a strange but good example of Summer Hollywood Blockbuster Movie.

1) It was very plot driven, characters lacked some real development (though Jansen's Phoenix was simply gourgeous and Page's Kitty really grew on me). The character which for me showed the most deph within the movie, was one that even didn't had as much screen time, if compared to the previous movies, which would be Mystique.

2) Bigger Special Effects, which doess't necessarily mean better action scenes, but some of the shots were very impressive.

On the weak sides of the movie, even though being mostly plot driven, the plot itself wasn't really that much neatly tied, generating the emptiness that I mentioned before. We saw a big battle and several plot twists, but what was that all about? What's the reason to fight. And after the fight was over, what all that meant, leaving a "so what" question in our minds? Oh, did I mention weak dialogue writing, but at least they got a few good lines throught here and there.

But even with all these weak aspects, the movie was still weirdly enjoyable for me. I accepted the drastic changes that the plot twists provided more easilly than I expected..

Comparing the 3 movies, I'd put this one somewhere in the middle of the other 2. It's far from the almost exceptional X2, but felt more X-men-nly than X-1 (which for me felt too much like a Wolverine and the X-Men movie, rather than really X-Men), even though the first one was a little better dialogue wise. For me, if X2 was a 9(okay, maybe that's to high, but bare in mind that it's 2am at this side of the earth, I'm not thinking as clearly as usual), X3 would be a 6,5, with a close 5,5 from X1.

The insert scene for dpwac:

OK, Numfar. Now I have to see it again!
Numfar, thanks for recapping that final bit better than I did. I missed some of the connections, makes a lot more sense now.

Just wanna say one more thing. I've never understood why people knock X1 down a couple of notches. I thought it was a very, very good movie. I thought it was great with the character development (Xavier, Magneto, Logan, Rogue, Jean, even Scott were very well fleshed out, this coming from someone who didn't know much about the characters going in). It had a lot of Xavier/Magneto at the beginning and end (remember the great opening scene? the great final scene?) and a lot of Logan/Rogue at the heart of the story.

Visually, I loved it. I dunno, I just thought it was very good all around, and at the time most people seemed to say the same. Then since X2 came out, X1 gets talked about like it was a weak movie. I just don't see it that way. In my book they're probably both A-, and X3 is definitely less (generously, B-). I'm surprised anyone would rank X3 over X1, a retroactively underrated film. =(

Maybe I'm fandom-dazzled, maybe it's the three red bull and extremely large pepsi going to my head, but the movie blew me away.

Not sure if I love it or hate it yet. It was LOUD.

But...good or bad, rushed or WAS the X-Men.

All the references, the emotions, the lines, the injokes. All of them were like old friends of mine. It was really nice to see them, up on that big screen again. Warm fangirl fuzzies.

I love this fandom. I love living in Hollywood, and I love the high I got when...well, when pretty much anything happened, starting with the Snakes on a Plane trailer.

There WILL be a sequal. There WILL.
I just saw it tonight and have to say that I wasn't all that impressed. The first two movies were awesome but this one fell a little flat for me. Actually that's an understatement. Can't give away too many examples for obvious reasons....everyone hasn't had the chance to view it yet.

Didn't care for it at all. I do agree with someone's assessment of the "Buffy" and "Angel" vibe towards the end and that's always of the good.....but Joss could have done it loads better.
Okay, regarding the end scene, this is a question to all the Whedonesquers who share my love of X-Men history ...

A ****SPOILER WARNING**** just in case I mention too many details.

No matter how you slice it, IMHO there's not enough Jean Grey. They tell us how powerful she is and what a threat she is (in a bit of cinematic sleight-of-hand at that: "Oh by the way, she has a dual personality and always has.") and then her story just drops out of the movie. She's there physically but says nothing and does little more until the end of the battle.

And Wolverine was too tame. I really like Hugh Jackman and liked his characterization in the first two movies. And his fight scene in the forest was very well done. But in terms of personality I thought he wasn't our angry, could-lose-it-at-any-second Logan.

An aside: when seeing a gravestone which said "Scott Summers" I couldn't help but add "He saved the world...a lot."

Tired of the phrase (for this or any other film) "Popcorn Movie". It's a Get out of Jail Free Card. Say anything you think is a flaw and the response is "Well, what did you expect, it's a popcorn movie."

[ edited by batmarlowe on 2006-05-27 12:16 ]

[ edited by batmarlowe on 2006-05-27 18:40 ]
Okay, I didn't expect to write as much as I'm writing in this thread, but here goes.

Numfar, thanks for recapping that final bit better than I did. I missed some of the connections, makes a lot more sense now.

Thank my friend Oz (nickname, not real name), he was the one who fleshed it more clearly for me, when we were discussing it while leaving the theather.

Just wanna say one more thing. I've never understood why people knock X1 down a couple of notches. I thought it was a very, very good movie.I thought it was great with the character development (Xavier, Magneto, Logan, Rogue, Jean, even Scott were very well fleshed out, this coming from someone who didn't know much about the characters going in). It had a lot of Xavier/Magneto at the beginning and end (remember the great opening scene? the great final scene?) and a lot of Logan/Rogue at the heart of the story.

You know when the first impression really sticks. That's still what I get from X1, can't really get rid of that same feeling, of really un-completeness. Was really the one, that I went with more expectations. Was the movie with the too much Wolverine, not enouth X-Men movie. Not so much a Wolverine fan myself, or at least, I'm not one of those fans, that consider him the coolest character out there in the X-books. I'd take on the x-women over wolverine anytime. And how the woman were developed in the first movie, really felt short for me. Berry's Storm, wasn't storm enough, lacked some strenghts that exist at the essence of that character. Paquin's Rogue was a girl that never blossomed for her insecurities, even after 3 movies. Jensen's Jean was really contained and restricted, which is better explained now, but back then was very frustrating for me, as along with Kitty Pryde, they're really my favorite X-Men in the comics. And about, Marsden Cyclops, really lacked something, even real chemistry with Jean Grey (which got better in the following movies, but was still stiff, never getting a sense of Bangel or Spuffy from them. Was too much Cangel for me - not Cordy-Angel fan myself, I must say).

Suffice to say, it wasn't bad, it just doesn't feel good enough for me. Which actually lowered my expectations for X2, back then, so I'll stick with the "9", I gave to X2 a few hours ago, as the second one caught me by surprise, as how better it got from the first one.

But...good or bad, rushed or WAS the X-Men.
All the references, the emotions, the lines, the injokes. All of them were like old friends of mine. It was really nice to see them, up on that big screen again.

Very well said. it WAS the X-Men.
Wolverine could've been more snarkish in this one, which did happened for a few moments at the beginning, but then got lost. Definetely tamed.
Thinking back now, the battle scenes, wasn't movie-ish enough, but were definetely very comicbook-ish. As in the still imagens from the comic books, we highlight scenes, moments. I am reminded of the last chapter of AXM's "Gifted" (which I was re-reading a few days ago), and the spread page with the Fastball Special, then panels that followed, show this very well. Those scenes could've been more movie-ish (like the Nightcrawler sequence from early X2), but I have no problem for this more ComicBook-ish take on it.

There WILL be a sequal. There WILL.

Interviews saying there won't, and the franchise will live on through spin-offs. But I left the movie, feeling that sequels wouldn't be that hard to develop.

[ edited by Numfar PTB on 2006-05-27 15:26 ]
Nebula1400: No I didn't, but now I've read about it. Very X-men of them =)

Just like batmarlowe said, Phoneix storyline wasn't really integrated that well into the cured storyline. My short-short version (contains spoilers for the movies plot) of how to do that would've looked something like this:

Well, something like that anyway, I probably messed everything up since I'm not that familiar with X-men. Sorry for the longwindedness, I got a bit carried away. Now I will go and play with my whiteboard and stop disturbing all you nice people.

[ edited by dreeze on 2006-05-27 15:55 ]
Not a bad movie really. But I rather watch Dark Willow in season six of BtVS. Just me.
I'm not too too familiar with X-Men either, dreeze, but I think you've got a much better movie on your hands.

Anyway, I was entertained, but it was not a good movie-althoguh I did like some things about it. Page's Kitty definitely grew on me, and for some reason I liked Storm more than in the previous movie. I think I was actually more entertained than X2 (blasphemy, I know), but I think that's only because I went into that one with much, much higher espectations. This one I let myself go for the ride, and I laughed when something silly happened. (See that member of Magneto's gang who looks like Prince crossed with Fez from "That 70's Show," except it's a female? Oh. My. God. So hilarious. I don't know if this is an actual X-Men character or not.)

ETA: Madhatter, well...duh. (I know some people don't like the Dark Willow thing. I'm just sayin', I ain't one of 'em. "Grave," flaws aside, would be desert-island viewing material for me.)

[ edited by WilliamTheB on 2006-05-27 18:32 ]

[ edited by WilliamTheB on 2006-05-27 18:34 ]
It was good, it could have been great. Without intentionally rehashing other people's comments, here's mine:

* Yes, the script could have used some doctoring, Joss-style. I thought X2 did a good job of giving a lot of different characters motivation and airtime. I think X3 took everyone's past character development for granted, and didn't really go forward from there.

* I would almost rather have X-Men as a weekly show like Buffy. The real genius of the Marvel universe has always been the character development and struggles, and we saw hints of it buried under the flash and noise in this movie.

Think what Joss and team could do with the talented actors who've been selected, given the time to do good dialogue and character development. Mmm. Nice thought, too bad it's less likely than a Serenity sequel.

OT: So, if they make an X4, what do they have to destroy this time? The St. Louis Arch? Mt. Rushmore?
Baby Jesus?

Just been to see it. I actually enjoyed it, although the final act was, uhm, sucky. About half way through the film the potential for the subtext got lost in explosions -- however: what remain was still thrilling.
Box Office gross

According to early Friday estimates from ShowbizData, X-Men: The Last Stand, the third chapter in the Marvel superhero franchise, has grossed $44.5 million in its first 24 hours, including midnight showings on Thursday night.

[ edited by Simon on 2006-05-28 02:24 ]

Just been to see it. I actually enjoyed it, although the final act was, uhm, sucky. About half way through the film the potential for the subtext got lost in explosions -- however: what remain was still thrilling.

Yep... this was not a great movie. Rather an "enjoyable" movie, nothing more. It would have needed a better scenario (come on, why the hell That's absolutely not justified, except to make a "big finish" and more CGI/action on screen... that's weak, at best).

But it wasn't neither the big ugly thing I was afraid of.
Oh my, Buffyfanfic. That's really, really good figures - I suspect the opening weekend will now be around $90m. Suspect it'll drop off quickly, but still -- very successful (financially) movie.
Whoah, that is a huge opening! I thought something was up when I went last night: X-Men on 8 screens (!), and still shows were sold out; Da Vinci on 4 screens, none sold out.

I've given it an Attack of the Clones (B-) to Phantom Menace (C+) rating, but like those movies, it is ultimately fun despite all its flaws. Some friends are going on Monday, I'll probably see it again (heck, I saw Menace 11 times in the theater).
Yeah that is a very strong opening and I bet the Fox executives are now taking the position that this X-Men film is not going to be The Last Stand if they can help it.

At the very least,I expect them to start really rushing that Wolverine prequel spin-off film they are doing into production.

I won't be a able to see the film till next week,myself.

I'm now really interested in seeing how Superman Returns opens in comparison to this.

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2006-05-28 00:06 ]

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2006-05-28 00:10 ]
Joss is right about genre being where the $$'s are.

Also, I'd be very surprised if there wasn't another X film -- the grosses of the films are in the billion dollar range. I wouldn't be surprised if they had to shift character focus, though.
Yup, all this talk of this being the last one has always rung hollow to me. To quote another Ratner film: "Money Talks".
Buffyfantic, in comments please don't post the whole article. Link to it and just summarise the main points or quote the most relevant info.
Is it just me how at slightly irritated that the fighting where so poorly done from a tactical perspective. I mean attacking a mass world war one style didn’t people stop doing that sort of just after WW1.
With regard to the Magneto/bridge thing, the simple reason that he would have done that is because he could! Magneto has never been shy of making the big dramatic gestures when it comes to the use of his power. Why bother to move the entire bridge? Why the hell not? He's Magneto, he can do whatever he likes! ;)
Apparently, there's a Magneto spin off in development now.

Also, Fox has confirmed X-4. Apparently. Surprise! However, they are saying that X-3 marks the end of these character journeys/arcs, so -- unsurprisingly again -- I think we'll see an X-4 with Kitty Pride etc. As in, the cheaper actors.
Since, Fox got into that giving taglines to the sequels.
X2 was the United and X3 was the Final "something" (it's lost for me).
So X4 might X-Men 4: The New Generation, with Kitty and Iceman, with cameos by Wolverine (What? Didn't anyone tell you that Wolverine is just everywhere....).
X-Men 4 will actually, in fact, be taglined: "The Final One If This One Is A Flop. On A Plane."
Just saw it. Liked it. Choppy and loud, but some of the little interactions were as good as anything from the first two movies, the Nightcrawler intro to X-2 aside. As said above, Page was great as Kitty - could have stood to see a lot more of her. Halle Berry no longer grates as Storm, and everyone got a little bit of attention.
Agreed, acidflash.
While that would stand as a fine capper to the main X-Men movie franchise (the fact that it was way too short and didn't have enough character moments notwithstanding), I really hope we get more. This story isn't finished yet. I think it has a fourth and perhaps even a fifth film left in it and they could be good.

***X-Men 3 SPOILERS!!!***
Magneto really needs to take a break as the main (or in the case of X2, secondary) villain though. Maybe even sit out #4 entirely, no cameos or nothing. I hope the "cure"'s effects wear off very slowly. Especially since I don't feel like going through something traumatic with Rogue's powers suddenly coming back...if they only show up in small bits at first, she'll have warning that the cure didn't work and will know enough to stop having skin-to-skin contact (already put one boy in a coma). And I really would love to have the old Mystique back, she's too awesome a character to be kept as a human nobody from then on. Though the fact that it was her who was the first mutant turned was such a perfect comeuppance.

I was gonna say that they probably locked her up for good for all the murders she's committed, but then again, they may not have much proof of them if she's always in disguise. And she probably made a deal for total immunity in exchange for every bit of info about Eric. You'd think they'd be scouring the Earth for him though! Man, talk about your mass-murderers. And he's just sitting in a park playing chess. Much as I love the character, he's gone so far that he really needs to be put away. It's always possible he could redeem himself in future films, but he shouldn't get off scot-free like he has (especially seems that way since he might fully regain his power).

Not gonna rehash any of the Jean/Phoenix, Cyclops, or mish-mashed plotlines talk. I will say that that after-credits snippet of a scene was a brilliant move though. The ending really wasn't enough, y'know? Like gossi pointed out, the third act was weak, everything up until then had been going really well, I thought. But that bit in Moira's lab eased the hurt a bit.

Bring on the Wolverine movie. Really not my favorite character in most incarnations of the franchise, but Hugh Jackman sold me on movie-version Logan, doubly so in X2.

[ edited by Kris on 2006-05-28 05:14 ]
Wolverine is, and always has been, my favourite X-Man and Magneto has always been my favourite X-nemesis/ally/leader/anti-hero so if they do go the route of having the next movies be solo outings for those two then I'll be fine with that.

The whole 'last X-movie' thing may have been taken out of context. Certainly, if this had been the flop many predicted (it REALLY hasn't been, according to reports at Newsarama), then it may have been the last but the way it has been discussed it seems to me more like it was just planned as the last of these three closely connected movies, with any potential sequels starting their own self contained stories.

I'd definately like to see the next movie feature a second generation of X-Men. Certainly Cannonball is a big enough character in the mythos to feature quite heavily, with a team formed around him. Maybe even use Havok. Having Alex Summers turn up as a result of Scott's death is very plausible. Personally I'd like to see Cable appear but I'd imagine that his character may be a little to complex to explain to the average non-comic fan.

One direction that I would love to see them go in would be to have Magneto himself take over the running of the school, not being aware that of course, in an attempt to try and make up for some of the damage he has done. I'm not sure that his character has developed enough in the movies to make that plausible but it would make for a very interesting story.

Whatever they do, I'll be there to watch ... as long as they keep Logan around! ;)

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