Logan affirms my belief that the PG-13 nature of most Superhero movies hampers their action. This movie has the same director, James Mangold, as The Wolverine but the action here is so much more viscerally satisfying because it’s allowed to go for it. And by go for it I mean having a little girl murder the shit out of people. And y’know blood and limbs getting cut off is good too.
This is also just a really good script. This is just much better material for Patrick Stewart to work with than this role has ever given him before; that dude is such a great actor and this really the first time an X-Men movie has given him the opportunity to do so. But this story is really about Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, and it gives the character (and the actor) a great and appropriate sendoff.
This is one of those movies watched and wondered how was someone allowed to make this movie? I mean the short answer is that Deadpool made all the money so Fox was more willing to back a creator’s R-rated vision. This movie has very little in common with Deadpool though, it’s tonally on basically the opposite side of the spectrum. There’s actually a little teaser for Deadpool 2 ahead of the movie, which was good and funny but also resulted in some tonal whiplash.
Even though that ended with Deadpool resting his head on a dead body, there was a fun lightness to that that makes stark contrast with a drunk Logan whose healing factor is failing him stumbling out of the limo he drives to try and stop some dudes who’re trying to jack his rims and then kick the shit out of him until he musters up just enough strength to murder the shit out of them before collapsing.
Also X-23 is one of my favorite X-Men characters and it was real cool to see a version of her in a movie. Not only did they do a decent job of telling her story in a movie that’s still not really about her, but they got to build the relationship between her and Wolverine from the start; something the comics just didn’t get to do.
This is maybe darker than I would have expected I wanted from a comic book movie, except that the X-Men are uniquely suited to going darker than most other series. This isn’t the kind of movie you repeat for a franchise; this is just a good idea for a single story that’s well told. AKA it’s a good movie and not also worried about being an ad for other movies. (Except for y’know, the ad for another movie that comes right before it.)
What this movie actually reminds me the most of is 2008’s Cable, an X-Men comic that was also about its title character taking care of a young girl as they flee from a pursuer after her. There are plenty of differences, but that core dynamic is similar enough that it reminded me of it.
I really love that core dynamic by the way. Like, a lot.
So yea, Logan is great, I highly recommended it. I’d say it’s the best of all the X-Men movies, including Deadpool. (And X-Men: Apocalypse and X-Men: The Last Stand are the only two of those movies I really don’t like) It’s just kinda perfect.
As a minor nitpicky footnote though I will say that this movie continues the trend of pitting our hero against a villain with basically his same power set, which Deadpool also did. I don’t have an issue with It in this movie, it works really well for this story actually, but it’s just kinda baffling to me that this trend keeps going.
I don’t know where you go with X-Men movies after this though. (Besides making Deadpool 2) This isn’t a franchise movie, a big part of it’s appeal is the completeness of its story; but going back to the tone and style of the previous X-Men movies would also feel real disappointing at this point. For me the success of this and Deadpool show the power of passionate people telling the story they want to tell with these iconic characters, as more than just the sum of their parts. I’m saying I’m afraid Hollywood is gonna take the wrong lessons from their success (as it tends to) and we’re just gonna get more comic book movies about geriatrics with Alzheimer’s and drunk limo drivers. Although if they just give me movies about children stabbing adults I’d be down for that, so maybe there’s hope yet.