By Jonathan DaSilva (New Bedford)

 

2017 starts off just like 2016 did before it. Fox leading the charge with a mature comic book offering, this time in the form of Logan, the final film in the trilogy that focuses on X-Men icon, Wolverine. This is by far the strongest and best in The Wolverine trilogy. The last two installments failed to deliver on the legacy of Wolverine. Logan doesn’t come across like the superhero films that predates it. With Logan, the character of Wolverine is finally able to tap into his true visceral and violent nature not available while confined within the realm of a PG-13 audience.

Logan’s advantage versus its superhero counterparts is that it’s a character driven story instead of a story acting like just another cog in a shared universe/franchise. The action scenes and set pieces in Logan fit into the narrative like a velvet glove and never feels shoehorned for the purpose of keeping the audience’s attention in case they start feeling bored with the character driven moments. I really appreciated how Logan utilized solid character development through the course of this film. Quite rare for a superhero film honestly.

Hugh Jackman’s portrayal as the weary former hero in Logan is his best by far! We’ve seen Jackman portray Wolverine as the unwilling hero before in previous films, but in Logan a callous nature now resides within and a once forgotten hero wants a life of solitude. But just when he believes there’s nothing left, a young mutant on the run enters his world which pushes him to acknowledge the possibility that the old Wolverine might still be left in him deep down. Even though this is Jackman’s film and his swan song, the supporting cast compliments him brilliantly.

This portrayal of Professor X by Patrick Stewart is a little hard to digest initially because this Professor X is the anthesis of what we as the audience have grown accustomed to watching all these years. As the story progresses, we come to understand the heartbreaking reason why and Stewart’s portrayal will make even the toughest of men cry. Stephen Merchant’s take on Caliban is far more memorable than the previous version which appeared in X-Men: Apocalypse. Dafne Keen is a big stand out as Laura/X-23, better green light an X-23 film!! Donald Pierce and Zander Rice were good choices for villains although Pierce was utilized more so than Rice.

Fox has seemingly found a winning formula, not only commercially but critically. The R Rated offerings give Fox the edge in the comic book cinematic war. While The DCEU and MCU continue to cater to the PG-13 audience, Fox has tapped into a market that craves a mature take on its superheroes.

With Fox embracing the mature nature of an R-Rating, it allowed director James Mangold to showcase the true violent nature of the Wolverine character which also gave Mangold creative freedom. There’s definitely Western influence imbedded in the DNA of Logan. This is not only a great sendoff for Hugh Jackman but also for The Character of Wolverine!!

Rating: 5/5

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