Quick Review: Logan

The family packed into the movie theater today to finally see Logan. I was a big fan of the original X-Men movies, back in the day, and I was curious to see how they were going to wrap this whole thing up. I loved Hugh Jackman as Wolverine and Patrick Stewart as Professor X. They were always two of the best parts of the previous movies.

However, before I get too much further I better put in a BIG SPOILER WARNING. I need to talk candidly about this movie, and I can’t do that without spoiling pretty big plot points.

First, let me say that I really liked this movie. I felt like it was the perfect send off for two classic characters. They got to experience some peace in their lives before they passed, and I was grateful for that. In particular the way that Logan died was very moving and appropriate. Here was a person who was dying slower than any human should ever have to endure, yet he still couldn’t pull the trigger to end his own life. He owed a debt to Charles and he had to see it through. I have no doubt that eventually he would have taken that adamantium bullet to the brain of his own choosing.

Yet, he went out acting as the true hero and protector that he was. Saving the next generation of X-Men by giving every last bit of his life to ensure that they would be safe. He still chose the time of his death, yet it was a much more noble death than the mercy killing/suicide he had planned. His death also impacted Laura in profound ways, as we saw her heartbroken by the end.

If I have one gripe about this film it revolves around X-24. At dinner after the movie, the wife and I talked about the one moment that we felt was not done as well as it could have been, and that was surrounding the death of Charles. When he was stabbed through by X-24 we both immediately thought it was a dream sequence. Because we had almost no foreshadowing of who X-24 was and what he looked like, his sudden appearance just didn’t make sense.

I would have much rather gotten a glimpse of him, hot on their trail, a few times before his introduction. This would have had the effect of making us all yell at the screen, “STOP! IT’S NOT THE REAL LOGAN!” when he showed up in the bedroom. By introducing him suddenly, and in such a way that seemed unreal, it caused confusion and distracted from the emotional impact that the scene really should have had. I understand the desire to keep him a secret, but I felt like it created one sour note in an otherwise really well done film.

Apart from this one scene, I felt like the entire movie was a great story. When the first trailer premiered they used Johnny Cash’s Numb for the background music. That was one of the most perfect choices for the film that they ever could have made. Then when the film ended and Cash’s The Man Comes Around played, it was a beautiful bookend to the entire piece. Logan was a tormented man, and Cash’s music exemplified that torment in a way that none of us will ever experience. One of the best music choices in a film I’ve seen in a long time.

One final word of caution, this is a VERY rated R movie. This is not for young kids, and it’s not a superhero flick. It’s a story of a man at the end of his life grappling with what his life was all about. Yes he has super powers, but this is as much a story about his coming to grips with contentment and forgiveness, as it is about stabbing people with claws. Highly recommend checking it out.

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