Last night I went and watched Logan with my friend, Jordan. I went into this movie with a weird amount of comic knowledge (even though I don’t read Marvel comics) and some upper middle expectations for the movie. As we all know, the first Wolverine movie was bad. It was terrible. It made kids cry for all the wrong reasons. The second Wolverine movie was pretty decent, ridiculous as hell, but that train scene—decent. So going into the third movie, I assumed that the quality would get better. They’ve been trending up, and we’re far from the days of the abomination of Origins Deadpool (but really, how does that now work into the Fox X-Men timeline…like how? That timeline’s such a bloody mess). I was excited to watch this movie though, mainly because it had trailers like this:
I mean…that trailer alone was enough to make me want to watch the movie. Oh and these three words could’ve worked as easily: Old Man Logan. But using Johnny Cash’s cover of “Pain” to show and enhance the mood of your movie was genius. I could easily tell that this wouldn’t be “fun” it was a movie that was serious and wanted you to take it seriously even though it wasn’t the genre of mainstream serious content, but I’m not gonna lie, this movie was pretty good. It was fun, in an un-fun way. And it deserves to be taken seriously as an emotional movie despite being a superhero comic movie (I know. It’s my sensitive subject, guys.). So I’ll be talking about this story in three subjects: Characters, Plot, Emotional Depth (yeah. That is a weird subject to judge and how can you actually do that?).
So really Imma just talk about our three main characters. There’s Logan, Professor X a.k.a. Charles, and Laura. So Logan is set off in typical Logan fashion. He’s a drunk. He’s an asshole. He’s a bad ass. The writers easily set him up to be a jerk with rage problems, but also a heart of gold. If you liked the movie portrayal of Wolverine, you’re going to continue to like him. If you didn’t like the movie portrayal of him from previous movies, this movie might do it for you, because he’s vulnerable, both physically and emotionally (this time not about Phoenix or his lover from the first movie). It’s purely him dealing with shit in an elderly state, and Hugh Jackman really embraces it.
As for Professor X, if Logan is old (physically), then you know that Charles is even older. He’s going through degenerative brain complications and also, humorously enough, he’s an old crotchety man. He curses. He’s rude. He pushes Logan’s nerves. It adds for a good balance and awesome rapport causing their relationship roles from previous X-Men movies to shift, and that’s always fun to watch. You’ll get a much different version of Professor X than what you might be used to, but some of those old principles will be there.
Last, but not least, is Laura. She’s essentially (is this really a spoiler? Cause I mean like, her comic origin is pretty much, “Hey I have Logan’s genes”. And when you watched the trailer you saw that she also had the claws, and really when have you seen characters with alike non-mental powers that weren’t related. I mean the Summers both shoot out lasers and if you couldn’t tell Alex and Scott were related…I mean jeez.) Logan’s daughter. She’s mute for most of the movie, but she expresses so much emotion without saying much. She’s a little Wolverine kid and that’s pretty adorable. She plays as a goal for Wolverine (he has to get her to a location so she can be safe), but also plays an odd foil to Logan. But she’ll also open the floodgates to your sensitivities.
Before I fully get into the full on plot of this movie, I realize that this movie was filmed before Trump’s election, but woo did certain points feel anti-Trump, but that might’ve been the point that the location (in the first half) was like Arizona.
Anyways, rather than, “a hey we’re a quirky team of people who act goofy, but can be serious, and we shouldn’t make for a good team, but we somehow do, and we have to defeat this weird ancient creature, oh what the fuck’s that large light in the sky, is it summoning something?, oh man we’re gonna have to defeat that, but through the power of understanding and a writer’s lack of ideas we defeated, hahaha aren’t we quirky” movie, Logan is different. It’s your, “Oh I have to get this object from point A to point B, and there’s an enemy also after this object, well I guess I’ll deal with my obstacles!” movie. But it’s more than that. It’s also an, “I’m getting too old” movie, and a, “most of my friends are dead” movie. Have you seen the plot of this movie before? Yeah. Is there imminent danger and badassery? Of course. But even though it’s a movie that’s been played out before, it’s the emotional depth that’ll get ya.
There’s a balance to this movie, a synergy of comedy, action, and emotional pieces that make this movie what it is. This movie is the Wolverine movie that we all wanted, kinda (I only say kinda because of course there’ll be fanboys who are all like, “AH! This didn’t follow this! And I’m an angry man child! Validate my wishes because all nerd shit is wish fulfillment!” or some shit like that because that is what fanboys are wont to do.).
In the scenes where you have our three central characters interacting with each other, that’s where you get the real gold. Because this movie is more than children killing adults or adamantium claws piercing skulls. In fact the claws through skulls happens a lot, and when I was in the theatre, quite a few people were wincing, while I was laughing cause that’s my aesthetic.
When you get all three characters you get a lot of emotional balance. You’ll laugh at scenes where Charles and Logan bicker. You’ll laugh when Logan uses unconventional means to take care of a little girl. You’ll laugh at side characters’ reactions to Logan, Charles, and Laura interacting with each other.
You’ll clap and stay impressed with each action scene or be horrified. You’ll clap at certain action scenes because they’re so satisfying. If you want an action film, you’ve got it. But this movie hurts. This movie fucking stings. And though you should expect it, the movie uses Johnny Cash for its trailer, it will still get you. And that’s because it’s a movie of lasts. It’s the last Wolverine movie. It’s the last (or one of the last) Hugh Jackman portrayals as Wolverine. You’re saying goodbye to quite a few things. And regardless of if you liked Wolverine in movie form or not, this is it. And in this goodbye film, you have an abundance of moments that show our badass hero at his weakest. He has to face emotional vulnerability and reflect on himself. He gets to see a knew start of his lineage through Laura. Throughout the series, with the exception of the X-Men, Logan has never stayed in one place and felt a sense of home, and regardless of how short it was, you got that sense of Logan having a home when he interacted with Laura and Charles. He has a sense of family and caring very reminiscent of the first X-Men movie (note the relationship between Wolverine and Rogue in the first movie). You give him a sense of familiarity that’s been missing for a while in very platonic, non-romantic, relationships. You see a softer Logan. And as a narrative should do, or at least aim to do, when placing a character in comfort, the movie rips it all away from him. And those moments hurt. When you get to the climax, there’s a good chance you might react like this:
And then you’ll get to the ending and you’ll be like this (maybe):
At the end, I was just whispering, “Hug your daughter. Hug her now.” This movie will get you, and even if you know what’s going to happen, you’ll still feel some sort of sad emotion. Overall this movie was pretty good. It has a plot that you know, but it’s still fun. It’s bad ass, it’s funny, it will punch your emotions. Go out and watch it. It’s in theaters now. I leave you with the X-Men opening theme. Later days.