Every so often, we get a pleasant surprise when we go to the movies. The most recent memory was when i went to see the first Iron Man film in 2008. At the time, Marvel had been producing less then mediocre movies like Daredevil and Ghost Rider. So it was nice to see Iron Man was such a well made film. In fact, Iron Man has always been my favorite Marvel superhero film. However, I think I just saw a movie that can easily take Iron Man’s place. That very film is the latest installment in the X-Men Franchise: X-Men: First Class. X-Men: First Class is a prequel/reboot of the dying X-Men franchise. This time around, we see the beginnings of, not only the X-Men and the Brotherhood of Mutants, but the founders of said teams: Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr. You may know those two better as Professor X and Magneto, respectively.
The film is set in the 1960s during the Cuban Missle Crisis, and what could have been the start of World War III. Little did people know, The crisis was secretly lead by a mutant named Sebastian Shaw. Shaw, along with his group of mutants called the Hellfire Club, have spent a very long time trying to take over the world. However, During this attempt, they have to fight off a new group of young Mutants lead by Xavier and Lensherr. Of the two leaders, Lensherr has been seeking revenge on Shaw for killing his mother during the Holocaust, and making his life a living hell.
I can not believe how amazing this film was. I’m still surprised while writing this review, and I saw the movie 4 days ago! I know Carter wasn’t a huge fan, but he has never been the biggest X-Men fan in general. When I first heard about the making of this film, I was far from excited to see it. It just seemed like the X-Men Franchise was dead, and could never come back to full on glory. I mean, did you all see X-Men Origins: Wolverine? Then again, if Batman’s films can come back from the grave, then why not X-Men as well.
In Fact, I’d say the two franchises have a lot in common. Both of the franchises started a comic book movie craze, almost died with their fourth films, and came back looking better then ever! Matthew Vaughn, whom directed the amazing Kick-Ass film, made one hell of a film here. He usually makes some great films, but non of them have blown me away as much as First Class did. This film, not only works as a very fun comic book summer blockbuster, but an intelligent period piece as well. I could be over selling/over hyping this movie, but I couldn’t care less. ha-ha.
I really enjoyed the story Vaughn, and his Kick-Ass co-writer Jane Goldman, were telling in First Class. The dialog was very good throughout, and the story kept me invested in this picture. as a side note, I loved the fact that each non-american character spoke their native tongue. I thought that was a great choice on Vaughn’s part. The last time I saw that in a summer film was the fantastic Inglorious Basterds flick. The performances were all top notch, I thought. The best of the bunch were James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender.
They both brought something new to the table with Prof. X and Magneto. Plus, the friendship you see between the two is so well done by McAvoy and Fassbender. My favorites of the Mutants in general were Beast and Magneto. Both characters were very well done. Magneto has usually been great in each of the films, but Beast was butchered in X-Men: Last Stand. So, it was nice to see him used properly in First Class. My least favorite was probably Kevin Bacon’s Sebastian Shaw.
I didn’t think he was silly or ridiculous, but just average. Nothing new or exciting came from Bacon’s villain, but I liked that he had more of a James Bond baddie feel then a comic book super villain feel. This film also features a few outstanding cameos. Non of them are of Stan Lee sadly, but the cameos are amazing non the less. In the end, You can tell I really enjoyed this film. For awhile, this film felt like the underdog of the summer among it’s Comic Book brethren. So, its nice to see that its been getting such praise from critics, and doing well at the Box Office. It may not be making as much as Thor is, but its still getting people in the theatres.
I give X-Men: First Class 5 mutants out of 5.
PS Don’t listen to Carter! Sorry man. ha-ha
(This review was written by Richard L. Purnell from Channel23hahaha on Youtube)