Possible spoilers ahead!
A decade after the events of “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” humanity remains divided on whether mutants are a threat, but some progress has been made after the public takedown of Magneto in 1973. Since then, Charles Xavier opened a school for mutants, and Mystique became a mythic hero for mutants all around the globe. Now, she frees oppressed mutants and dismantles anti-mutant movements from the shadows.
However, when an ancient power re-emerges after several millennia, enlisting the help of powerful mutants for the purpose of freeing mutantkind from the shackles of humanity, Mystique and Charles must join forces one more time. They can’t do it alone though, and will need help from the next generation of X-Men. But can Xavier’s students turn into soldiers in time to save the world?
Bryan Singer’s “X-Men: Apocalypse” is more than a decent follow-up to the epic Days of Future Past, but Apocalypse is not a perfect film either. Or to put it another way: longtime fans of the comics will be satisfied, while more casual film goers will be left scratching their heads a few times.
I will say though that “X-Men: Apocalypse” has a ton of great moments, some of the best in the film series in fact. The scene with Magneto in the forest is one of the best sequences I’ve seen in movies this year. The opening scenes in ancient Egypt were better than anything in “Gods of Egypt.” And Xavier’s excitement when he sees Moira MacTaggert again is pure gold.
Some of the other highlights for me were Quicksilver (everything he did was great), Nightcrawler (“I’m blue!”), and the Cyclops tree scene. The biggest surprise in the film was Sophie Turner as Jean Grey.
You liked her right away and whenever she appeared on the screen, you couldn’t take your eyes of her. Sophie Turner stole the movie for me, and I’m pleased to say they finally got the character right, and I can’t wait to see what they do with her next. Perhaps this time they can do a certain Dark Saga some justice?
The biggest disappointments in “X-Men: Apocalypse” were my fellow Guatemalan Oscar Isaac buried under a mile of purple makeup. Issac wasn’t helped by the villain’s lackluster plan to rebuild the world. And he spent most of the movie recruiting mutants to his cause and not engaging the X-Men.
Instead, Apocalypse lets his horsemen do the fighting but, with the exception of Magneto, the horsemen of Apocalypse get very little screen time, they don’t even get memorable moments or action scenes. Anyone who watched the film’s trailers or tv spots will have seen everything these is to see from Olivia Munn’s Psylocke. Seriously, my all time favorite X-man, played by this nerd’s dream girl and that’s all I get?
Psylocke spoke in two scenes, two scenes!! And, she didn’t get any back story or any character development (same goes for Angel). Her powers are not explained, which if fine for a guy like me who knows Psylocke well from he comics, but many in the theatre were confused.
My guess (and my hope) is that a lot of Psylocke was left in the cutting room floor because the movie was running so long. And for the record: Olivia Munn was just fine, none of the problems were her fault.
At its core, there’s actually a good story in “X-Men: Apocalypse.” But all of the good stuff is drowned out by the lack of character development and less than stellar action scenes (compared to Days of Future Past).
And yet, “X-Men: Apocalypse” has a ton of stuff worth seeing, and I don’t believe it deserves the hate many critics are giving it. This was a solid addition to the film franchise, and its worth seeing in the theatre.
“”X-Men: Apocalypse” final score: 7.5