Well, it was worth the wait. Wolverine was definitely one of the best films I’ve seen in a while. The fight sequences are awesome (particularly when you’re sitting in the front row of a big screen) and everything moves at just the right pace. The opening credit sequence was particularly good, reminiscent of Watchmen in its journey through the American Wars. I also thought the actual story was good, and although the twist is guessable in part, the reveal did draw some breath in the cinema.
The continuity with the other 3 films is also not bad. Yes, Sabretooth is played by Tyler Mane not Liev Shreiber in the first film, meaning he looks pretty different, but thats just about passable in the grand scheme of things (one could argue that since he was becoming more and more animal he turned into one….) And while we’re on the subject of Sabre, Liev Shreiber definitely has a lot to do with what makes this movie great. He’s the perfect foil for Jackman and makes a chracter that has been pretty much sidelined in the films so far into a memorable legend.
As for our other mutants, Wolverine falls into the same trap as Last Stand by introducing lots of exciting new powers and then not using them. Dominic Monaghan’s Bradley (AKA Chris Bradley AKA Bolt-although we’re never told that) is in the film for less than five minutes, while Wraith (Will.I.Am) and Blob (Kevin Durand) get little more to do. The most under used though, is Taylor Kitsch’s Gambit, a character there’s been much furore over in the lead up to the film and who could have been better used. I didn’t think I was that bothered by Gambit, but Kitch’s charismatic performance meant I was sad not to have him on screen for longer. Having said that, focussing on these other characters would have dragged the story away from its focus, and then we’d probably be criticising it for being to long.
One new addition who seems to have caused outrage across the comic book geek community is Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) I’m not close enough to the comics for the change to his character to really wind me up, and I actually thought the transition was kind of cool (minus the claws which were lame) but even I know that that’s not what was supposed to happen. However, for those of you that are getting really worked up about it, you might be interested to read this, which explains how in the upcoming Deadpool spin off, he’ll be less Frankenstein and more the “Merc with a Mouth” we all know and love. What I do find confusing is the ambiguity over who actually played Weapon XI, Ryan Reynolds says it was him, imdb begs to differ, so if anyone can clear that one up for me…
I have read a lot of criticism for Wolverine, but I’m yet to find any I can truly agree with. I think Jackman is great in the role, and while the current film may have had less of the wisecracks that we’re used to, there were still enough to keep the audience laughing. The whole point of the film is that this is the Logan before; the one we’ve seen in later films (and comics) is the one who has had to rebuild his life out of nothing, so of course the character will change slightly. It’s been a while since I’ve seen a film and instantly wanted to start again, but that was true for Wolverine. In fact, it’s worth going again, not only for the film but for the after-credit sequences of which I know there are at least two (I had the Wolverine one, I’ve not seen the Deadpool).
If you haven’t already, ignore the critics and go see Wolverine, it’s definitely worth it. If you have, go again. I know I want to.