X-Men: Apocalypse Rating:
Theatrical Release: May 27, 2016
Worshiped as a god since the dawn of civilization, the immortal Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) becomes the first and most powerful mutant. Awakening after thousands of years, he recruits the disheartened Magneto (Michael Fassbender) and other mutants to create a new world order. As the fate of the Earth hangs in the balance, Professor X (James McAvoy) and Raven (Jennifer Lawrence) lead a team of young X-Men to stop their seemingly invincible nemesis from destroying mankind.
If you haven’t seen the new X-Men movie that has been out for the past two weeks, you have probably still heard some things about it. Things like “Awful” or “terrible movie” or “boring” or whatever else. Well here is my take on this – Haters are gonna hate, because X-Men: Apocalypse is dope!
What is there to love about the latest X-Men installment? An all-star cast who wow in each of their respective roles. Killer special effects. An epic story with an epic lineup of characters… Should I go on?
The movie has an awesome opening, set in 3600 B.C. in Ancient Egypt where Apocalypse (thought to be the first mutant) is being prepared to transfer bodies once again to continue his reign. But he is betrayed by some of his followers. He would have been killed, or at least stopped because of being in the middle of his body swap if not for the actions of his four most loyal followers – his horsemen. Their actions save Apocalypse but he sleeps, buried deep underground until the present day of this movie.
X-Men: Apocalypse is set in 1983 – ten years after the events of X-Men: Days of Future Past. Charles Xavier (Professor X) is happily overseeing his school for the gifted, where Hank “Beast” McCoy (Nicholas Hoult) teaches and Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) and Scott “Cyclops” Summers (Tye Sheridan) are students. But not everything is going down at school. Raven/Mystique is continuing her activism, freeing mutants like the transporting Kurt “Nightcrawler” Wagner (Kodi Smit-McPhee) from their captivity. Erik “Magneto” Lehnsherr has gone into hiding and has a life as a “normal” person, with a wife and young daughter.
When Apocalypse wakes up he does not know this world and seeks to understand it. Quickly he decides it has been inherited by the weak, who have lost their way so he must cleanse the world and begin again. To do that he needs to find four powerful mutants to join him as his followers: Storm, Psylocke, Angel and Magneto (oh please, he just can’t stay away from the dark side for long 😛 ). Apocalypse and his four acolytes begin their cleanse of the world, and end up taking their fight right to Professor X and his students… the future X-Men… And I can’t say anything else about what happens because I don’t do spoilers. 😉
I LOVED this movie. I went with my husband and my brother, and my brother also loved this movie. (My husband has hated every single installment, so that was a lost cause.) It started strong, and finished that way. Always entertaining, great fast pace, but not too fast.
This movie has one of the strongest casts yet and this movie being more action than drama meant that the actors/actresses needed to do what they needed to do with as little time and as few words as possible. Mission accomplished! The characters are just deep enough. No one is going to say these are complete character studies, but each one is more than just surface. We see desires, fears, motivations, and revelations – struggles in each character, all different from each other but none the less real. What more can one expect?
A few reviews have criticized how many characters there are, and claims the movie relies on its special effects. Um no, and no. The special effects are great, but they’re used to enhance the story, which is their job. They are not a crutch. And I’ve already mentioned how the lineup of mutant characters was a plus. Any true Marvel fan will appreciate it, but to those who only know Marvel through the movies that are made – this is an epic battle with the highest stakes yet. It’s not about a country, or a leader or a single chain of events – it’s about all of humanity and its very existence. The stakes don’t get higher than that. And that makes this story epic, and epic stories involve a lot of (not to say the word again, but yes, epic) characters. That’s just how it’s done.
One final thing I really loved about the film besides the ending (which I can’t talk about because alas… spoilers) were the little throwbacks to previous X-Men films. Whether it was a joke “At least we can agree, the third one’s always the worst,” (referencing X-Men: The Last Stand, but this is also considered the third film of this particular series/trilogy) or some past plot reference. But unlike Days of Future Past, seeing the previous films is not necessary to enjoy this one or follow the story. It’s just if you have… it adds one more layer.
X-Men: Apocalypse was a great movie on all fronts and made my inner geek come out. I can’t wait until the next X-Men film! 😀
You’ve heard it here – don’t listen to all of the reviews out there blasting this movie. Listen to mine. Or any other review that tells you to go and see this movie if you like superhero flicks. What are you still doing reading this? Go see X-Men: Apocalypse and all of its “epic” glory! 😉