Review: Logan (No Spoilers)

By Angel

Movie description:

“In the near future, a weary Logan cares for an ailing Professor X in a hide out on the Mexican border. But Logan’s attempts to hide from the world and his legacy are up-ended when a young mutant arrives, being pursued by dark forces.”

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Expectations:

I was 3 years old when Hugh Jackman starred in the first X-Men film as Wolverine, one of my favorite characters because of his performance. I fell more in love with the character because of the 90s animated show and to see Jackman in the role every few years was incredible. For 17 years, he’s delivered one of the greatest comic book portrayals of a Marvel character, it’s been a legendary era that I’ll never forget. I love his performance as Wolverine because it’s taught me so much about trust and family.

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Wolverine embraces his mutant powers to help others, even if his life is consistently tragic when he loses someone, that never stopped him, it makes him stronger. I’ve always loved that so much. His temper and rude remarks are hilarious when he interacts with other individuals.

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My expectations were through the roof for this film because this was the grand finale and the trailer was phenomenal. I did a trailer reaction for the film and it hit me hard emotionally because I realized this was the end. This character had suffered so much and all I wanted was for Logan to get the closure he deserved, discovering where he came from and what his purpose was for living. Unfortunately, and I really hate saying this, but Logan did not meet my expectations. I expected more because Hugh deserved it, but I just thought it was really good at the most. This is definitely worth seeing on the big screen because of the scale and intensity. Let’s get started….one last time.

 

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The hook was incredible. It starts off with Logan laying on the floor, drunk, and waking up to these cholos trying to steal the wheels of his car. He tries to reason with them and right away they blow his chest away with a shotgun. That’s when they realized….they f*@ked up!

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Logan brings out his claws….*SNIKT* and slices them up like we’ve never seen before. Arms and blood galore with claws going through the heads! It was gorgeous. This hook established the tone of the R-rating right away which took my breath away because I finally got to see Logan in his intended atmosphere.

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I loved the story until the beginning of the third act. That’s when I began to realize that the story elements being used in this film are no different than what I’ve already seen before. Logan saving girl, Weapon X project, and Logan contemplating suicide. Nothing about the story was surprising to me, I’d experience it before which allowed me not to be as engaged as I wanted to be.

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(Logan saves girl and takes her to safe haven)

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(Weapon X project/Mutants held as hostages to make ultimate soldier)

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(Logan wanting to kill himself)

I also thought some choices in the film were straight up lame, specific deaths and how certain characters died. Logan’s attitude from beginning to end was one of my least favorite things about the movie and he didn’t change at all. His character stayed the same, if I’m not seeing him grow, why would I care? Because of his attitude, I didn’t really look up to him anymore, it was difficult for me to connect with one of my favorite heroes which made me quite sad, not about what was going on in the film, but about how I felt watching the movie.

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I couldn’t even cry in the most emotional parts of the movie because of how thrown off I was by Logan’s motivation. It was disappointing because I’ve never had an issue with the WOLVERINE character in any movie, except the only one that everyone’s considering a masterpiece. He honestly lacked a lot of humanity which made me depressed for over 2 hours and I’ll explain in further detail as to why when I get to performances. The obstacles were underwhelming, Logan’s heal factor wasn’t as strong, but still c’mon, men with guns chasing a mutant girl down.

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(X-23 was SO SICK in this scene!!!)

The most interesting obstacle was Charles Xavier and his alzheimer’s disease. That was an intriguing character choice that I wanted to see further explored, it did pave the way for an amazing action sequence.

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Cinematography:

To me, great cinematography is when the visuals are contributing to the storytelling. A film should SHOW us what’s going on rather than tell us. When it comes to analyzing cinematography, simply, I ask myself, “Was this film nice to look at?” Then I can choose to get in depth and look for whether colors were symbolic, placement of characters in the frame, composition, lighting, shadows, and point of view. This was the cinematographer of Gladiator, doesn’t this shot look familiar?!

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Was LOGAN a nice film to look at? ABSOLUTELY. John Mathieson did a brilliant job with the cinematography because he gave this film a look like no other before, Logan LOOKS like a western, but I wouldn’t necessarily say the movie overall is a neo western.

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Usually the main concepts in Westerns deal with the main protagonist wanting to achieve law and order or protecting sacred land. This is not what Logan is about at all. Nature was perfectly represented as a reflection of the emotional state of Wolverine. He’s dead on the inside and that’s how the land looks; dirty, dry and dead. Nature in westerns are a huge indicator that the lone person are against space, often outdoors. Logan has a dead interpersonal conflict which increases his conflict with groups of people and institutions. His body, mind, and soul are all deteriorating and Mathieson did a fantastic job at visually showing me that.

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Performances:

Hugh Jackman stole the show once again. He is Wolverine and he’ll always be Wolverine. In this film, Hugh Jackman had to play an alcoholic and cynical Logan. He was  an older version of this beloved character who was literally getting “too old for this sh*t.” He perfectly played this tired version and I believed every second he was on screen, I just did not like the way Wolverine was written. Like I mentioned before, Logan from beginning to end just wanted to die. He had no motivation to live anymore because he’d lost every single thing he’d ever love. The way he treated Charles did not feel like love, it felt like a burden.

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The way he treated X-23 was awful, although many people are having this weird perception as if their relationship was lovely, where in reality of the film he was yelling at her the entire time and didn’t want anything to do with her. I should have cared about his relationships with the others, but I didn’t.

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Logan gave up emotionally and I didn’t like that at all. I love it when he embraces the time he has, no matter how tragic it becomes, not when he’s trying to end his life short. If the filmmakers purposely made his character bleak, than the execution wasn’t my problem because they nailed it, it was their choice of making him that way that felt off-putting.

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Patrick Stewart was outstanding. He had to act like he had a brain deteriorating disease and it seemed so real. Not only was he the brain of the film, he was the heart. He’s a legendary actor and it’s been a privilege to see him breathe so much life into an awesome superhero.

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Dafne Keen almost stole the show with her performance, but she wasn’t given as much to do as Jackman or Stewart. She barely had any dialogue, which makes sense for her character, but when she did have dialogue, it sounded annoying. My favorite segments with her were when she brought her claws out and showed everyone her wrath. EPIC.

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Everyone else did an excellent job with what they were given.

Music:

The music was SUPERB. The visuals definitely lead this film to accomplish the uncompromisable brutality. Marco Beltrami found a way to balance the film with an untraditional thematic score, it was emotionally supportive and established a delicate weary mood. The chords also sounded like they were produced from unique instruments such as harmonica’s, organs, and drum kits inspired from the western genre.

Themes

Family was a theme in this film and I thought it was poorly executed. There was a beautiful scene from the trailer that shows Logan smiling at Professor X and X-23. Logan looks like he is a part of a family, a feeling that he can rarely hold on to. I thought this theme was poorly executed because that was the ONLY scene where I saw Wolverine truly embracing life and what he was given the ability to do, to love others.

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Death was the primary theme of this film which I hated because it shouldn’t have been the main focus on the very last film of Wolverine. I wanted the theme to feel graceful, not painful. Death teaches us that life is valuable, so we make the most of what we have. We learn to accept, move one, survive, and grow. Logan does not have the triumphant conclusion that I thought he deserved. Instead it felt abrupt and depressing.

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Overall

I really wanted to love this movie. This is my second favorite Marvel superhero and one of my favorite actors of all time. I wanted to call this film a masterpiece, but I didn’t like the way I felt watching it. I thought the acting, cinematography, dialogue, and music were all amazing. I loved 2/3rds of this film until the obstacles were further revealed and I realized that the story had the same plot points as previous X-Men films.

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I thought I would cry, but I was too distracted by the decisions they made when it came to the emotional gut wrenching scenes. I hate not loving this movie, it really bothers me and will continue to do so forever. Hopefully with a second viewing, it becomes different. I just don’t want this to be the one last time, not yet, I just can’t believe it, not like this bub. Thank you so much for reading my review and I hope you love the film. Thank you Hugh Jackman, The Wolverine. My rating for Logan is 8.5/10. (B+)

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