Logan - 2017
Logan marks the eighth and final time Hugh Jackman portrays his most iconic role to date, The Wolverine. Director James Mangold created a world that doesn’t fully depends on what came before it and it doesn’t need to set up a sequel to come after. Logan is set in a future, where our reluctant hero is forced to help a young mutant in need.
Throughout the years, Hugh Jackman has committed physically to this role, transforming his body to move closer to his comic-book counterpart. In Logan, Jackman delivers his best performance, as he plays a broken man (both physically and mentally), trying to live out his final days in peace. Jackman’s performance constantly reminds the audience that his present is filled with pain and that he is no longer the indestructible force he has been in previous movies. There are multiple scenes where you are one-hundred-percent enthralled with his performance, since he conveys pure pain and desperation with such conviction. I honestly can’t praise his commitment enough, I had always been impressed with the hours he put on his body and the love he showed for this character, but in Logan he showed a new level in his performance.
Along with this marking the final performance of Jackman, we got Patrick Stewart’s final go as Professor X and just like Jackman, Stewart saved his best for last. Stewart managed to be both the heart and the comedic relief of the movie, always attaining a perfect balance between them. There is multiple scenes in the movie where you can see the weight of the years behind his eyes, as he sees this road trip as his last chance to fulfill his life’s dream (to help mutant kind). Stewart and Jackman (thanks to the many years in this franchise) have an amazing chemistry, as this makeshift family tries to survive in this dystopian world.
To round-out the makeshift family is Dafne Keen, playing X-23. She joins the ranks of Stranger Thing’s “Eleven” and Kick-Ass “Hit-Girl”, as she delivers what can only be described as a badass performance. Despite not benefiting from eight previous films like Jackman, she instantly makes the audience connect with her character and root for her success. Keen character holds her own in every single scene she is in charge off pushing Logan and by default the plot forward.
I must be upfront with my audience regarding the previous movies that came before this one, I haven’t liked and X-Men movie since 2003. I hated the Last Stand like everyone else, found First Class to be “OK” at best, was bored by Days of Future Past (HOW THE HELL DID KITTY GET THAT POWER??) and I completely skipped X-men Apocalypse. This movie is by far the best standalone Wolverine movie and the best X-men movie since X-Men 2 back in 2003. They finally found a great balance between being faithful to the comic books and creating a completely original story.
Mangold direction was a thing of beauty (that last shot was a masterpiece), he maintains the western/sci-fi tone throughout the entire movie and the action scenes are shot so well they almost feel like a dance choreography. Mangold let the actors and the stunt man do their job, not relying on “shaky cam” and quick cuts to portray action. Along with the direction, Mangold also provided the story in which the screenplay is based on and even though visually it looks like Old Man Logan, it is the most original X-Men story put to screen.
When one of your main powers is putting adamantium claws through people’s skulls, the movie really benefits from having an R rating and it delivers one of the most brutal comic book movies to date. This movie is not only brutal in the violence it portrays, but in the sad conclusion of two of the most beloved movie characters in the Marvel Universe.
I came to watch Logan with very low expectations (since I had been burned before), but it quickly became one of my favorite comic book movies of all time. I never thought I would be sad watching a comic book movie and that’s why I love movie, you never know what you will get.
Logan is currently playing in theaters, watch it if you can.
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