X-Men: Days of Future Past (12a)

Reviewed by Matt Adcock

Director: Bryan Singer

Cast: Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Hugh Jackman, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy, Jennifer Lawrence, Halley Berry, Nicholas Hoult, Ellen Page, Shawn Ashmore, Peter Dinklage, Omar Sy, Daniel Cudmore, Fan Bingbing, Adan Canto, Evan Peter

Quote:

“There is a new enemy out there: mutants. You need a new weapon for this war…”

Plot:
Ever had that wish that you could go back in time and correct something that sparked the situation you find yourself in? That’s exactly what Charles Xavier / Professor X (Patrick Stewart) plans when he finds his X-Men heroes being hunted down and exterminated en mass by Sentinels – machines designed to find and adapt to any mutant powered threat and kill it…

Only Logan / Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) has the regenerative powers to survive being bounced through time to his younger self and so he’s given the task of preventing the Sentinel Programme ever getting going in order to stop the future mutant cull. It’s a delicious plot device because it cleverly allows us to have both sets of X-Men in the same film – those from the original trilogy and the ‘60s set prequel ‘First Class’ from 2011.

Reaction:
Days of Future Past plays delivers on all fronts – effectively being a sequel not only to ‘First Class’ but also the less loved ‘Last Stand’ from 2006. Thanks to the winning team of original X-Men Director Bryan ‘Superman Returns’ Singer and writers Jane ‘Kick Ass’ Goldman and Matthew ‘Kingsman: The Secret Service’ Vaughn this is the most super mutant fun to hit the screen in years!

So gear up for some breath-taking action scenes – my pick of bunch being an audacious jail break aided by the very cool Quicksilver (Evan Peters) which will have super-fans grinning. But there is also a decent amount of brain power being thrown at this tale which works hard to tie up lose ends from across the X-Men franchise and set up the next in the series (be sure to stay until after the credits for a freaky sneak peek).

Can Wolverine find and unite the young Xavier (James McAvoy) with Magneto (Michael Fassbender) – whilst trying to stop Jennifer Lawrence’s Mystique from assassinating dangerous scientist Bolivar Trask (a superb ‘70s tach sporting Peter ‘Game of Thrones’ Dinklage)?

The against the clock plot builds up a great deal of tension – both in the past as the mission hits all kinds of snags such as prototype Sentinels and Magneto’s evil streak, and in the ‘future’ as the team, beaming Wolverine back, face being wiped out before he can complete the history revision.

Thinking material:
The X-Men are a fascinating fantasy ‘what if’ – one that engages both our desire to be ‘super’ and looks into the fear / mistrust / desire to destroy anything out of our normal frame of reference. This heavy-duty mixture of seeing those who we fear and mistrust fight to save us ‘mere mortals’ is a superb analogy for those with belief who seek the welfare of those who openly ridicule or condemn them.

Rating: **** 4 out of 5 stars

Related Films: X-Men: First Class, X-Men, X-Men: United, X-Men: The Last Stand, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, The Wolverine.

Check out our Movie study resource: ‘Cinemania’ here…