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We are all mutants

Posted at 12:31 PM on May 26, 2006 by Euan Kerr


Another bad day at the office for the X-Men (Images courtesy of 20th Century Fox, photo Kerry Hayes)

The idea behind the X-Men is brilliant. Who has never felt irreconcilably different from the people around them? Very few of us, and that's what makes the mutants in Stan Lee's creation so appealing.

Deep down we are all mutants of some kind.

It's what makes the idea of X-Men movies so appealing too. And why the abject failure of the latest movie in the franchise is so disappointing

"X-Men:The Last stand" starts strong, but then loses it's way, spiraling into a pile of mush which seems more concerned about launching spin-off movies than completing a story.

There are so many characters, it's confusing. The screenwriters keep introducing new mutants with powers which are clearly just going to handily fill some hole in the narrative. It's little different from the gadgets in a Bond movie on some levels, but it's hard to escape a feeling that a whole lot more could be done with these characters.

Even the established characters don't get much of a development. I missed the second film in the series, (I was busy that weekend or something) and felt frustrated by the way there are only tiny hints about important events in the past which clearly are guiding the characters this time round.

There are some great moments, especially when Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and Magneto (Ian McKellan) set aside their enmity and work together in the face of a larger problem. I also have to say Kelsey Grammer looks really good in blue.

Yet there are also moments which are just plain silly. At on point near the film's climax, Magneto performs an amazing feat using his powers to control metal. It looks great, but is just ludicrous if you give it more than half a second's thought. Action films are all about the ludicrous, but there has to be at least a sliver of sense to maintain the illusion of a narrative.

A caveat: I saw "X-Men III" with Malcolm-the-15-year-old-in-our-house. He's right in the demo for this movie. He LOVED-LOVED-LOVED it. As will his pals. If you are looking for something with a little more depth, substance, and drama I'd recommend "The Proposition."

What do you think? We are looking for reviews.

May 2006
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