Hugh Jackman’s final performance brings about a thought-provoking and emotional comic book movie
With Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart officially leaving the franchise, the X-Men movies’ future has never been so lost yet so confident. What both new entries of the franchise have made it clear is that new additions are welcomed and possible. As their veterans sign off, new additions become more important.
Although Fox has made it unclear where the franchise is headed, it certainly is in good hands. Director James Mangold (The Wolverine) has created one of the best X-Men movies to date, finally proving that a solo Wolverine movie can exist and that gritty comic book movies also have a place in mainstream cinema. If I were DC, I’d take note of that.
Logan is the story of the comic titled Old Man Logan where we follow a vulnerable and sick Wolverine (Hugh Jackman). He is the caretaker of Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) who suffers from a degenerative brain disease. In this world, not many mutants are left, in fact, they all got killed. Since they are still alive, both of them need to keep it low-key. However, that soon changes when Professor Xavier finds a new mysterious mutant called X-23 (Dafne Keen), and she needs their help. The mission is to bring her to North Dakota so she can cross the border to a safe zone.
It should be no surprise that Logan is not like other X-Men movies. It’s rated R for a very different reason than Deadpool was. This is the kind of story that isn’t afraid to deal with very dark and sad themes. It’s the kind of story where our heroes are vulnerable very much like real people. Those very real stories give the opportunity for Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart to take center stage. They are not the same cheery Professor X or the same comic Wolverine. They are characters who have experienced the world’s darkest moments and a world that has betrayed them.
The world of Logan is mundane and tough. The living condition of its inhabitants seem fine, but it’s the conditions of life of the marginalized mutants that look like hell. And James Mangold is aware of this and plays it out more than he’s ever done before. He brings back the X-Men movies to the root of what made them so great the first time.
Although Logan is set in 2029, like all good X-Men movies, it speaks about issues of this time. Mutants have always served as a voice of the people who don’t quite fit in society. Whether it be people of color, homosexuals or transgenders, X-Men has always given them a voice. Therefore, of course, Logan would give voice to the people in need of one right now in America, immigrants. As you could probably tell from the plot, Logan is very much a tale of immigration as its core. These are people seeking asylum from something that has ruined their lives much like in real life. And it’s no secret why James Mangold and his team decided for the immigrant, X-23, to speak Spanish.
Logan will be well up there with the best comic book movies. It reinvents much like the first X-Men did. It dares to make superhero movies emotional dramas instead of a full on action movie. For action fans dying to see action scenes, there’s still plenty to be had. But for fans tired of the genre, I would give Logan a try because you won’t ever settle for anything less after.
Logan is released in theaters on March 3rd in the US and Canada.