Director: Matthew Vaughn
Running Time: 132 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 12A
UK Release Date: 1st June 2011
Watched at the Cinema Wednesday 1st June 2011.
PLEASE NOTE: THERE MAY BE SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW.
It isn’t often I get to see a film on the first day of release, but due to a timely week off work I was able to make it to the first screening at my local cinema. There was no need to rush, the other eight people there were well spread out and I had an entire row (or six) to myself! I guess I should talk about the film… that’s why you’re reading this after all. Really enjoyable with quite a complicated plot but I found that despite a running time of over two hours it really flew by! Testament to the writers, actors, director and everyone else involved, it’s a big thumbs up from me.
We are told the story of how Charles Xavier founded his school for mutants in 1963. How he and his best friend, Erik Lehnsherr, later to be known as Magneto, had differing visions for the future for mutants. The stories of Hank McCoy (Beast) and Raven (Mystique), amongst others, are also told, particularly how Raven grew up with Charles but ultimately couldn’t see his vision. The narrative is set against the Cuban Missile Crisis, which, for the purposes of this story, is manipulated by one Sebastian Shaw, who has his own reasons for wanting to start a nuclear war. Shaw also has a very strong significance to Erik but I’m not going to tell you about that here (no spoilers here).
Great performances all round, particularly from; James McAvoy as Charles Xavier, Michael Fassbender as Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto, Kevin Bacon as Sebastian Shaw, Rose Byrne as CIA agent Moira MacTaggert, Jennifer Lawrence as Raven / Mystique and Nicholas Hoult as Hank McCoy / Beast.
As we have come to expect from these films, the special effects are of the highest quality. Fortunately this does not distract from the excellent plot that gives so much more depth to the main characters. There is a fair amount of humour as well, look out for a very brief appearance from Wolverine (very funny). Over all, an exceedingly well made film that I hope becomes a big hit. It’s intelligent without ever talking down to the audience and I really enjoyed it. I would be happy to see it again and it’s already pencilled in to be added to by DVD collection… Recommended.
My Score 8.5/10
(RT = Rotten Tomatoes)
IMDb Page: http://uk.imdb.com/title/tt1270798/
RT Page: http://www.rottentomatoes.com/m/x_men_first_class/
Official Site: http://www.x-menfirstclassmovie.com/