Sunday, 19 September 2010

Film Review: X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE (2009)

Director: Gavin Hood
Running time: 107 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 12

UK release date: 29th April 2009

Watched on DVD Sunday 19th September 2010.


I have quite enjoyed all of the X-Men films, I can’t say I was a fan of the comic books, but I do remember the animated TV shows. So I was intrigued to see the back story of one of the most memorable characters from the films. I can’t say I was overly impressed, but I think that is due to the limitations the filmmakers were working under. But more of that later, here’s a short synopsis first.

We begin with Logan as a young boy discovering that he has a mutation, at this time his claws are bone. He and his brother, Victor, escape after Logan murders his father and they fight side by side all through the American Civil War, World War I, World War II and Vietnam. Yes, they are both indestructible. We come to the present day and the pair is recruited to a special team run by Col. William Stryker, a shady character to say the least. After one particular mission where Victor goes too far, Logan turns his back on the team and goes to live in Canada. He lives a simple live with the love of his life, Kayla. Six years later Victor re-appears and starts murdering the remaining members of the team. He eventually comes after Logan and ends up killing Kayla. Swearing vengeance, Logan is approached by Stryker who says he can give him the tools to beat Victor. Logan agrees and his body is infused with the rare metal alloy called adamantium. Now with his metal claws Logan is turned on by Stryker and is on the run. He eventually discovers exactly what Stryker has been doing and it’s not good news for mutants. I’ll leave it there, don’t want to give the ending away.

This film was OK, the effects and stunts were very well done but it did suffer from two problems. First of all I felt they tried to fit too much into the plot which meant that many things were only half explained, or the audience was left to fill in some gaping plot holes. The second problem was the fact that it only had a 12A certificate here in the UK. This meant the level of violence was very limited and this was to the determent of the film in my opinion. There’s lots of talk on the DVD about Wolverine being more ‘Bad-Ass’ in this film, but you just didn’t see it on the screen. If it had been a 15 certificate I’m sure it would have been a very different movie.

Having said that, the performances all round were pretty good, so honourable mentions go to Hugh Jackman as Logan / Wolverine, Liev Schreiber as Victor Creed, Danny Huston as Col. William Stryker and Lynn Collins as Kayla Silverfox.

Over all, it’s a pretty entertaining film despite the rather confusing plot. Some great action sequences and all the CGI bells and whistles we’ve come to expect from these films. If you’re a fan of the X-Men films then it’s recommended, otherwise, maybe not.

My score: 5.6/10

IMDb Site:

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