X-Men Origins – Wolverine

Xmen Origins Wolverine Hugh Jackman

Rating: 2.5 of 5 ★★½☆☆ 

I admit I went into Wolverine without a lot of expectations. Despite Hugh Jackman’s interviews about how they chose the director because Gavin Hood would handle the characterization well. I haven’t seen any of Hood’s other work so I don’t know if is inability to actually live up to all the talk because he really doesn’t handle character well or he isn’t experienced enough to be able to forge character in the midst of a giant comic book movie.

Either way, the characters were shallow.

The performances weren’t bad, but they weren’t great either.

Ryan Reynolds was a little over the top in the his first incarnation but he’s still Ryan Reynolds so I didn’t mind that much. He isn’t really essentially Ryan Reynolds in his incarnation as Dead Pool so that really wasn’t any fun for me. Also, the cgi/make up combination of Dead Pool seemed weak because it looked like cgi/make up instead of being a seamless effect.

Taylor Kitsch was a lot of fun as Gambit (and I have a friend who was both excited and dreaded to see Gambit). The biggest problem was that there wasn’t enough of him.

The action was decent. Nothing spectacular or particularly cool that stood out, but also nothing that was done badly.

Aside from the aforementioned fake-ness of Dead Pool, the entire ending sequence on top of the silo was poorly done green screen work where the effects were too soft to disguise that they were effects.

And I didn’t love the writing. There were too many elements to the story – going all the way back to Logan’s origin, then the wars, then his romance and then we get into the actual story they’re trying to tell. It’s too much in too little time so it seemed discordant. Then I didn’t like the twist they pulled out at the end because it felt forced. I realize it was designed to add emotional heft to the end, to deepen the whole Silverfox story, but it had the opposite effect because it came across as contrived.

I wanted to like this movie more because I like so many of the actors involved and I love X-Men stories. But this just wasn’t well done.

Writing:★★½☆☆ 
Characters:★★½☆☆ 
Performances:★★¾☆☆ 
Directing:★★¼☆☆ 
Production:★★★☆☆ 
Overall:★★½☆☆ 

May 2, 2009 | Review , , , , | this post contains affiliate links