What started off as the first blockbuster comic book movie in 2000, X-men has since crafted a faction of spin-offs, sequels and prequels that have laid the blueprint for what we now know as the juggernaut money making machine – that is superhero movies. Enter, X-men Apocalypse, the ninth film in the 20th Century Fox franchise.
Set in the 1980s and continuing to thread the timeline together like a nice mutant blanket bridging X-men First Classset in the 1960’s to the original X-men series in present day. Starring Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen, we have pre-geriatric Professor X and Magneto played by James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender respectively. For once, the conflict (well main conflict) does not come from the quarrelling on-again-off-again besties, but from a dormant mutant asleep since the Stone Age – ‘En Sabah Nur’ aka ‘Apocalypse’.
Oscar Isaac (of Star Wars VII) is the distractingly weird looking villain, who from the trailers didn’t instill much of a sense of being particularly menacing or threatening; but upon watching the movie, despite lacking depth he was a cool character with awesome powers that looked impressive on screen. His scheme is to re-assemble the four horses and ‘cleanse’ the Earth to be how it was during his reign as a perceived God in the Egyptian era.
This is Bryan Singer’s fourth endeavour into the world of the X-men, and although he’s by far the best director in the series, the quality of the films is starting to slip, and perhaps that is because of the quantity. He is already teasing the next film and we have another Wolverine movie coming next year too. There is something off the mark aboutApocalypse that I can’t put my finger on, so I devised a pros and cons list:
- Great casting and acting
- Interesting threat (albeit odd)
- Predominately a different setting in Egypt
- Effects and music are solid too
- Recycled tropes and plot devices
- Spreading thin old ideas
- Shoehorned fan service
- An already convoluted timeline
That should just about cover it without riddling this review with spoilers. To put it simply, it is better than the trailers that sell it, but worse than its predecessor film Days of Future Past. I recommend seeing it in 3D if possible!