Where do I begin? It’s the year 2000 and I’m a young boy excited about the first X-Men film. Our favorite mutants are leatherclad and kicking the villainous Magneto’s behind. While the film was in action, something we couldn’t predict happened. We didn’t know it at the time, but this film introduced us to something very special, something that has only happened once. It gave us Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine.
There were many great things about the first X-Men film, but the greatest one was Wolverine. Jackman’s tenure as the clawed mutant lasted 17 years and 9 films, with the latest one being his last. He is the only actor to ever portray the character.
Although his spin-offs started a little rocky, his solo outings slowly progressed throughout each film into something spectacular. X-Men Origins: Wolverine was underwhelming and The Wolverine was a much needed improvement, but there was still something missing and I think Jackman and director James Mangold knew.
Much like Deadpool, Wolverine is an R-rated character. He kills, he swears and things get really bloody. All previous Wolverine films were PG-13 and lacked the gore that is expected with the character. Then, 20th Century Fox announced that a third film was coming. The still-untitled film was heavily promoted at 2015’s San Diego Comic-Con, where Jackman confirmed that this would be his final go playing the character, unveiling a poster with the tagline– One Last Time. The film would go on to be titled Logan and the first trailer showed off a cerebral, western vibe with our weary berserker at a very low point in his life. I can officially say I’ve seen the film and I will give my thoughts about it below.
The marketing leading up to Logan led me to believe that the film was shaping up to be nothing short of a masterpiece, and boy was I right. The film starts out with a weary Wolverine. He’s old and doesn’t heal like he used to, but he definitely hasn’t lost a step. As the film progresses they introduce us to a senile Charles Xavier, who is trying to convince Logan to take a young mutant girl named Laura — who is very much like him — to a safe haven. While on the run from a group called the Reavers, who work for the sinister Transigen company, Charles, Logan and Laura travel to the safe haven and experience a lot of the good and bad things in life.
Logan sets the bar really high for this year’s set of comic book movies. It gave me everything I wanted in a Wolverine film. This was the movie I’ve been waiting for since the day I opened up my first X-Men comic. It had the right amount of action, blood, gore, and tear-jerking moments and performances that would make the most cynical person weep.
Jackman delivers his best Wolverine performance yet. He plays the tired world-weary old mutant so well that he’s somewhat an entirely different character from previous versions. Death, living longer than most people and seeing the things he has would do that to a person. I think Jackman delivers this with expert precision. We also get to see a different side of Patrick Stewart’s Professor X in Logan. He’s a foul-mouthed, wise-cracking, senile old man with the same heart as his younger self and I loved every bit of it.
Newcomer Dafne Keen absolutely shines as Laura/X-23. She kicks so much ass and has just as much rage as Logan. You will leave the theater thinking two thing: This girl can act and she can probably take a grown man down. By the end of this film this girl will have you rooting in her corner every step of the way and she has this way of making Logan get his act together that would make everyone smile. They’re a perfect duo.
Even the supporting characters add a certain weight to the film due to the fact that the main trio pose a risk to their well-being and you’re constantly worried for them because of how dastardly the villains are. The Reavers, led by Boyd Holbrook’s Pierce, are the main antagonists and are as chaotic as they can be. Holbrook plays a dick so well that I wanted him to get brutally mauled by Logan every time he was on the screen. Richard E. Grant doesn’t have much screen time as Dr. Rice, but he’s the most villainous of all as the puppet master for the muscle of the film.
Overall Thoughts: With its amazing cast and the emotional weight of being the final X-Men film starring Hugh Jackman, I believe Logan nails it. The all-around performances of the cast and newcomers gives this film the edge to make sure Jackman’s final bow as the Wolverine didn’t go quietly into the night. The story, rating, performances and the gore make this the perfect end to the Wolverine trilogy. This the Wolverine film we’ve been waiting for. It’s a masterpiece.
Logan opens in theaters on March 3rd. Don’t miss it.