Film Review: Logan

Logan’s first line of dialogue is fuck and he gets the shit kicked out of him by a gang before he gores and dismembers them with his claws.

So your usual marvel superhero film, this most certainly isn’t.

I’ve been waiting for a film like this ever since superhero films became a thing.
I’ve often seen the promise of better more character driven films lurking beneath the surface of loud colourful action packed displays Marvel has been putting out since the original X-Men film, and my god have they delivered.

Logan, now old and worse for wear, lives his days in obscurity with Caliban “a glorified truffle pig” for mutants, and Professor X, now suffering from dementia with fatal results.
This all changed when a mysterious girl with wolverine like abilities ends up in Logan’s care, on the run from shady government agents hell bent on recovering her, thus resulting in a dystopian road trip action film (I’ve nicknamed this film: Two Mutants and a Baby) set across america to the promised land: Canada.

One big welcome change to the X-Men franchise is the amount of gore on show. Wolverine has been in literally every X-Men film to date yet these family friendly affairs have kept his claw’s true potential at bay, because let’s not forget that Wolverine’s main power is summoning huge sharp claws out of his fists, they’re not exactly built for hugging.
So when Logan fights a man, we don’t cut away to another character or position the camera in a clever way: you see those claws gouge, stab, rip and tear human flesh in fine gory detail and there is  blood. So much blood.
It may not sound like much on paper but it really enforces just how dangerous he is and what kind of damage he can do.

If I really had to nit pick here, I would say that the villains on show here are serviceable and mostly one note. All of the big lifting in terms of characterisation and action is took care of by Logan, which doesn’t leave much for the bad guys, which consist of a robot armed guy, Richard E. Grant and a cloned version of Logan himself which I will admit was unsettling at times. They are limited to just chasing Logan wherever he goes and not a lot else, but again, a nit pick at best.

Another big change is the amount of depth and character shown in this film. Yes the fight scenes are awesome and bloody but the center stage belongs to Logan’s battle for a normal life, one without killing and mutants, a battle he isn’t winning. Parallels are drawn with The Gunfighter and Shane, a film that is actually referenced in the film at one of the most emotional parts. That’s right, emotional, as in get your tissues out because you’re going to cry your eyes out emotional.

Fans of the franchise will have seen Hugh Jackman basically live this role over the past 17 years, and knowing this will be the last film he stars in as Wolverine, it makes it extra special, and to be honest I couldn’t think of  a better swan song for such a character.

Logan: 9/10

 

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