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Judy Thorburn's Movie Reviews

X-Men: Days of Future Past (3D) | Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Halle Berry, Ellen Page, Michael Fassbender, Peter Dinklage | Review

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4sm The Flick Chicks movie rating for this film is GOOD Judy Thorburn

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4lg The Flick Chicks movie rating for this film is GOOD

 

X-Men: Days of Future Past (3D)

Bryan Singer is back at the helm for the seventh installment of the popular franchise since he vacated that seat after X Men 2.  Most definitely, a welcome back is in order for the series' original director who injects new energy into the franchise.

Written by Simon Kinberg, the story opens in the bleak, dystopian future where the government controlled, lethal, almost indestructible gigantic, robotic creatures called Sentinels, created by scientist Dr. Bolivar Trask, (an underused, villainous Peter Dinklage of HBO's Game of Thrones) have nearly wiped out the mutant population and their human supporters, leaving behind a wasteland of lifeless bodies amid the rubble.

In an effort to save themselves from an impending attack and the rest of the mutants that are threatened with becoming extinct, X-Men: Magneto (Ian McKellen) and Professor Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) devise a plan to go back in time with the hope of changing the course of history.

Using Kitty Pryde's (Ellen Page) power to transport a persons consciousness back in time to their own past bodies, the grumpy but charismatic Logan/Wolverine (Hugh Jackman, in super hunky, muscular form and having a grand time) steps up to the plate because his amazing ability of bodily rejuvenation makes him the only one that could withstand the trip. Sent back to 1973, a time of lava lamps, the Nixon era, and end of the Viet Nam war, Wolverine's mission is to meet up with and convince the younger, troubled Xavier (James McAvoy) and his former friend/turned foe, Erik Lensherr/Magneto (Michael Fassbender) to join forces in helping him find the blue, reptilian skinned shapeshifter, Raven/Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence in tip top, kick ass mode) and stop her from assassinating Trask, which would thereby set a series of disastrous consequences in motion. I will only add that Mystique's extraordinary DNA plays into the scenario.

With the young Professor and his friend Hank Bishop (Nicholas Hoult, Lawrence's real life fiancé) aka, Beast, at Logan's side, the task at hand means hooking up with and enlisting the aid of Peter (scene stealer, Evan Peters of American Horror Story) a leather-jacketed, silver-haired teenage mutant with super speed known as Quicksilver, to break into the Pentagon and free Magneto from an underground imprisonment after he was implicated in the killing of JFK.

What I really like about this installment is the fact that it is character, rather than special effects, driven within an intricately crafted, well paced narrative that delivers a perfect mix of action, spectacular and seamless CGI, complex relationship dynamics, drama, tension, and a bit of humor. Especially memorable is the funny scene depicting the slow motion world through Quicksilver's eyes as we watch him fly through a room at the Pentagon comically altering the movements of the security cops and the path of their bullets.

A few new mutants such as Bishop (Omar Sy), Sunspot (Adan Canto), Warpath (Booboo Stewart), and Blink (Chinese actress Fan Bingbing, who has virtually no dialogue, but nevertheless makes an impression), make their mark in the powerful, action packed opening sequence. There are also brief, cameo appearances by the original X Men including Storm (Halle Berry), Iceman (Shawn Ashmore), and Colossus (Daniel Cudmore) whose individual unique powers are put to use, and, in what literally amounts to a blink and you will miss her moment, Anna Paquin appears as Rogue.

The central focus is on the top notch lead actors, Jackman, Fassbender, Lawrence, and McAvoy, who turn in compelling, strong performances. And I must say, Canadian actor Mark Camacho does a bang up job impersonating the voice and persona of President Nixon.

X-Men: Days of Future Past surely is the best installment of the series since part 2, which should please avid fans as well as any movie going enthusiast. To say this sci fi action adventure has that special element we call the “X Factor”, could not be more applicable or defining.

A word to the wise.  Stay in your seat through the end credits to catch a teaser of the next installment: X-Men: Apocalypse due out in 2016.

On another note: Evans Peter is so impressive as Quicksilver that he has set the bar high for Aaron Taylor-Johnson who plays the character in the upcoming installment of Disney’s Marvel Avenger franchise titled,  “Avengers: Age of Ultron”, scheduled for release in 2015.

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