by Matt Mungle, Member of North Texas Film Critics Association, published on May 24, 2006|
X-Men: The Last Stand is the third and supposedly final episode in the mutant trilogy. All the familiar faces are back along with some new and varied characters. In this episode a cure for mutants has been discovered. As Dr. McCoy puts it, A major pharmaceutical company has developed a way to suppress the mutant X-Gene, permanently. They're calling it a cure. This of course draws an immediate line in the sand and divides the altered community. When Magneto (Ian McKellen) decides to put together an army to try and destroy the source of the cure, it is up to Storm (Halle Berry), and Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) to try and defend the freedoms of all. They are joined by a very blue and hairy Dr. Hank McCoy (Kelsey Grammer) as well some of the more advanced students of Professor Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart).
Though it is obviously better to have seen the first two X-Men films it is not necessary. Having personally never seen the prior two installments I was worried I would be lost. Luckily they took very little time in setting things up and I found myself familiar with the characters and into the story line immediately. For fun I suggest you take some time to visit the main X-Men website first and read the back-story of all the characters. Again this is not needed to like the movie, as most will find it enjoyable, exciting and highly entertaining regardless of any prior knowledge.
I do however recommend that you go into the movie with an understanding of the sci-fi/fantasy theme. If watching individuals who can control the weather, walk through walls or manipulate their surroundings with a simple thought makes you roll your eyes in frustration this is not the gig for you. There are many moments of cheesiness and poor plot development. The writers take full advantage of penning in characters that can do just what they need them to, only when they need them to. But hey, this is a film about mutants not a biopic of human existence.
But there is an interesting avenue of thought if you allow yourself to travel it. An idea of us as human beings trying to come to terms with our
differences; differences in ourselves and those around us. The deep desire to fit in while at the same time keeping our independence. To accept our own shortcomings while tolerating those different than we are. And ultimately who decides what is normal? Who mandates who changes and to what extreme? I know, I know I am getting way too deep for a movie that has guys named Iceman and Pyro who shoot natural elements from the palms of their hands.
All that said I totally enjoyed this movie. It moves along at a decent pace and keeps you entertained with action and excitement. Fans of the prior two films should find this just to their liking. As we left the screening I heard nothing but raves from what obviously where X-Men fanatics. This film is rated Pg13 for action violence and language plus a brief scene of sexuality. I give it 3.5 out of 5 metal thumbs up. With a look at X-Men: The Last Stand, Im Matt Mungle
Rating: 3,5 out of 5