Fun fact, I had never seen X-Men: First Class or X-Men: Days of Future Past before this weekend. I took the long weekend to catch up and while Apocalypse is fun and does a good job of entertaining its audience and understanding the world it inhabits, it suffers from a few issues that does bog it down a bit. But it’s still a pretty good time.
X-Men: Apocalypse is now the 8th movie in the X-Men film series (9th if you count Deadpool) and is the third movie of the latest “prequel trilogy.” Following the events in Days of Future Past, it is now 10 years later. The team has split up and Professor X has started his School for the Gifted. However, a new threat has come forth as Apocalypse, the first and most powerful mutant has awoken after 1000 years. He is appalled at the world and vows to cleanse it and destroy all life. The X-Men must unite to destroy him.
The best thing the movie has going for it is its amazing action sequences. The action in this movie is riveting and exciting. Bryan Singer really directs the action well and it’s all handled nicely. All the characters are given their time to shine and all their powers are showcased very well. The last action scene is breathtaking at times and it’s extremely captivating.
The best scene in the movie has to go to Quicksilver. He had maybe the best scene in Days of Future Past, and here he steals every scene he is in. If you thought the scene in the jail cell was awesome, Apocalypse tops it and it’s amazing. Evan Peters plays him perfectly and Bryan Singer knows this character so well. After the horrific version of Quicksilver we got in Avengers: Age of Ultron, Peters’ portrayal of Quicksilver is so much better.
As for the other performances, James McAvoy is very good as Charles Xavier, as he has been in all the movies, Michael Fassbender is extremely good as Magneto. A lot of the movie’s emotional core comes from his character and this may be Fassbender’s best performance in all three movies. You really feel for his character and his motivesare all understood. Jennifer Lawrence is okay as Mystique. There are rumors that this will be her last time portraying Mystique and at times she does seem checked out, but for the most part she’s good.
Oscar Issac is also pretty good as Apocalypse, even though his character is not super menacing. Apocalypse on paper is menacing, but they way he was portrayed could have been so much better, not performance wise, but visual wise. For some reason, he reminded me a lot of Ronan from Guardians of the Galaxy. Don’t get me wrong, he’s a much better villain, but there was something about him that reminded me about him. I think the biggest thing they could have done was make him bigger. Apocalypse is supposed to be this great scary villain, but he just doesn’t come off that way at times.
The editing is also very bad at times. There are scenes that seem like they’re just thrown in randomly. For instance, there is a scene where a few characters come out of Return of the Jedi and comment how it wasn’t nearly as good as Empire Strikes back and how the third movie in a trilogy often is the worst one (an obvious self-referential to the fact that Apocalypse is the third movie). The scene just seems so out of place and random. It’s about a 30 second scene and it completely interrupts something much more interesting and important. It happens a few times actually where 30 second scenes just seem thrown into the middle of other scenes because they couldn’t figure out where to put them. It just is distracting.
The pacing at the beginning is also not very good. It takes a while for the movie to get going. After an hour they were still setting a lot of plot lines up and it does feel pretty disjointed at times. It takes a while to actually care about everything that’s going on. However, once Magneto is finally introduced in the movie, it does start to pick up and it starts to become a lot more interesting. But the first 20 minutes to an hour has a lot of pacing issues that could have been better with just a couple of script tweaks.
Overall, the movie is very entertaining. However, maybe it’s because this is the fourth, yes fourth, superhero movie we have had in only 4 months, and we’ve had two this month! We still have yet another one (two if you count Ninja Turtles) coming out this year! The superhero genre is getting way to bogged down, studios are just constantly pumping them out and after a while it just feels old. While X-Men: Apocalypse was very entertaining at times, it just kind of felt old. Maybe it’s because a far better movie in Captain America: Civil War came out just 3 weeks previous, but this just doesn’t compare to previous superhero movies and it doesn’t even compare to its previous movie.
X-Men Apocalypse is a fun movie that has incredible action sequences, great characters, great acting and an incredible Quicksilver sequence. The Quicksilver sequence is worth the price of admission alone. However, it’s not a perfect movie and suffers from an underwhelming villain, poor editing, and poor pacing and script issues. However, if you are a fan of the X-Men series, I would highly recommend checking it out.