Trailer: X-Men (2000)
Running Time: 1 hr & 44 mins -Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi
Big JD (Host)
Mutants. In a world like our own a single gene can make someone a mutant and give them special powers. There are mutants that believe in humankind (X-men) and that we can live together in peace. There are also those mutants that believe that humans will never accept their kind and they must be eliminated if they want to survive. (Magneto) Follow Wolverine as he discovers the X-Men and their fight against Magneto.
Of course I saw this movie when it first came to theatres. This wasn’t the start of Marvel movie mania but it is where the movies started to hit big in the box office. At that time all that we fans had was a 90’s cartoon. We wanted more and we got it.
As starter franchise movies go this is definitely one that you can’t miss. I won’t say that its perfect but it has it’s own style. I liked the introduction of each character from Rogue to Magneto. I can’t say that they got the characters completely right. But as a movie that re-imagines the X-men universe it does pretty well.
Lets get the positives out in the open before we rip into this. The soundtrack was a little dated at times but you can’t resist the X-men theme song. It grows on you. Also during the Wolverine/Rogue white stripe reveal the song is very moving. I give them props for pulling you in. The special effects were top notch when this movie first came out. Seeing Mystique morph was amazing. Although, if you compare it to today it may be lacking just a little. I like the way Bryan Singer started with like this gray tone that covers most of the movie. It gives the movie a style of its own.
If I had the writers of this movie standing in front of me (Tom DeSanto & Bryan Singer) I would ask them some questions. Why didn’t you make the characters closer to their comic book counterparts? Why couldn’t you include Angel? Or Beast? Why did you go with a short Cyclops and a tall Wolverine? What made you decide that Storm no longer needed to be African? You made Toad Overpowered. Why did you get rid of his “igor” persona? Why did you give Mystique the “nude” look vs. having the iconic white dress with skull headpiece? Why did you get rid of Rogue’s bad start? Why did you get rid of Rogue’s Southern charm?
These are all questions that I would love to have answered. For reasons that go beyond making a good movie. I would think that they would treat the characters with respect if they wanted to carry on.
The acting by certain characters has always had me sitting uneasy. The one that sticks out most would be for Anna Paquin (Rogue). Her overacting has always drove me crazy. She gets better as the movies go on but this one is the worst for her. Storm’s accent. (which is nonexistent) I didn’t feel like it was Storm. It felt like just a normal woman in a white wig that had bad one liner’s. James Marsden has never felt like Cyclops to me. Being a leader doesn’t mean that you act like an ass. Even though Cyclops can be an “ass” sometimes, it just wasn’t done the way it could have been. I am a firm beliver that the height issue on his part was a factor. It’s hard to listen to a short guy. Hugh Jackman did ok for his first role as The Wolverine. I never liked the suits they wore but again I got used to them. One day. One day we will see Wolverine in a Yellow & Blue/Brown & Tan or Silver/Black outfit. I feel that they can do it right. It doesn’t have to be cheesy.
In all I liked the ending and the way they left it. Even though we didn’t get to see the X-Men really do anything until the end of the movie, it opens things up for sequels. Just so you know coming out July 18, 2014 is “X-Men: Days of Future Past” where we will see the First Class cast team up with the original cast for one jumbo Mutant movie. Hopefully that includes Sentinels.
Comic Book Movie Plus: Halle Berry: Catwoman, X2, X3, X-Men: DOFP – Hugh Jackman: X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X2, X3, The Wolverine, X-Men: DOFP – Patrick Stewart: X2, X3, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, X-Men: DOFP …seriously if they are in this movie you can count on them being in the other X-Men Movies. Nuff Said!
Nudity Bonus: N/A (Not today Fanboys!)
X-Men is one of my favorite Marvel Groups, Bryan Singer did a good job pulling a lot of elements of the comics in this film, But there are still a few things I want to talk about.
First of all the writing was fair, it wasn’t great, but it wasn’t horrible either, I think the cheesy one-liners is what really killed it for me in that department, like when Storm says “You know what happens to a Toad when it’s struck by lightning…” Really?! that’s all you got?! the storyline I like the most during this is the feud between Wolverine and Cyclops. But nothing really explains why they don’t really like each other, A lot of this movie I gathered is from the 90’s cartoon series, which I could relate to more because I grew up watching that Cartoon, but really there was a good mix of stories from the comics, but the one-liners…need some work on those.
Something else that kind of bothered me is Sabertooth, for the time this was done, he wasn’t bad, but he didn’t really have any speaking parts, and Sabertooth and Wolverine have always been rivals. I think Wolverine Origins explains that a lot better, but that’s the thing when review movies that are based on comic books is you have to keep an open mind to the “Universes” of the comics. I.E. Spiderman has had so many reboots that after Andrew Garfield I don’t think I can take anymore teenage Spidey.. but back to this movie review.
Toad was another let down, Ray Parks would not have been my choice for Toad. He had more speaking lines then Sabertooth, and really Toad isn’t a “Pretty Boy” with make up, he’s a short, ugly guy…I think the guy who did Gollum would have been a better choice and could do a rather impressive voice for what Toad would sound like. Granted he couldn’t do the stunts that Ray Parks does…but where exactly has Ray Parks career really lead him to?
Anna Paquin as Rouge would also not be my choice, not that her acting was bad, just she didn’t seem like she would be a good Rouge. I was expecting more of a Southern Girl who isn’t afraid to knock you out with some Southern Hospitality, but I noticed her accent kind of fades from time to time.
Jean, Cyclops, Professor X, Wolverine, and Magneto were done rather well casting wise, and quite impressed. Of course Patrick Stewart had it in the bag long before this was made. Ian McKellen plays a good Magneto both him and Patrick Stewart were type casted for their roles and did extremely well in my book.
I wouldn’t say this is the worst of the “Trilogy” but I wouldn’t say it’s the best either. A good Fox Marvel Movie I will say that, But even only being 13 years later you can tell that CGI was still experimental and just goes to show how much technology has evolved since then.
Finally we have a good superhero movie! It only took a bunch of garbage to get to this point, but boy am I happy we made it here. This is one of my favorite super hero movies to come out. It has a very good cast that works pretty well together. This movie was one of the first that I ever owned on DVD, back when we still weren’t sure if it would catch on or if VHS was still going to hold strong. (Spoiler alert, you can get VHS movies for free now. People give them away!)
There were some problems with the movie however. Mostly I was not pleased with Hallie Berry playing Storm. She did not fit the African Queen roll to me. I was also not fully sold on Hugh Jackman playing Wolverine at this point. He didn’t fully put himself into the roll like he did in X-men Origins. The rest of the cast did great together. James Mardsen was a perfect pick to play Cyclopes, Ian McKellan was a great Magneto…though he did look a little old and undersized compared to his comic book counterpart. Patrick Stewart was practically born to play the roll of Professor X.
Great cast aside, the plot for this movie was not too bad either. The story kept me fairly interested and the Soundtrack wasn’t really grand but it was ok. This movie was peppered with some nice humor as well. The special effects for this movie were also very good for the time. Mystique was one of the best looking characters on the big screen to date.
Overall a really good movie which was able to take a great story and cross it over to the big screen, something that most other comic book movies have not been able to do. The Super man movies? The first 4 Batman movies? Soooooooo bad. But this one gave us Super Hero’s without making it cheesy or weird. Good pick Big JD, good pick.
A great Superhero/Comic book movie. Watch it with your kids…if they are old enough.