On paper X-Men: Days of Future Past is a very ambitious film. First it is marrying the original X-Men series with the “prequel” series. With that marriage comes the joining of both casts which could appear to be a rather over stuffed movie. I’ll be honest that was a fear I had going into this movie as well. One such fear I can thankfully say after seeing it was lifted. There is a big cast to this film but the balancing act Bryan Singer and screen writer Simon Kinberg did with this is quite impressive.
The future setting in this movie is quite reminiscent of what we see in the Terminator film franchise. In this movie it’s purpose is not only to setup the story but to give us a bulk of the action sequences. We get to see a number of characters we have not seen on film in quite some time while also being introduced to some new ones, with Blink stealing the show in the future setting action set pieces.
In a quick rundown of what the movie is about. The future world has descended into chaos as mutants and human allies are being herded like cattle into camps to be executed. An unstoppable force is among them, a super advanced form of sentinels (Nimrod for the comic fans). This future however was set into motion because of one woman’s actions back in 1973 (Mystique). An action the X-Men in the future plan to stop by sending the consciousness of one man back into the past into his younger self. The only man able to survive such an enduring transfer, Wolverine.
Days of Future Past had some of the best drama to date in a super hero film. You can liken it to X2, which I would say is the best X-Men film but it now has some heavy competition for that title in this new release. In the 1973 setting the story was a lot more focalized. It mainly revolved around 3 X-Men (Wolverine, Professor X and Beast) trying to save the future with some help from Quicksilver, Magneto and Mystique. The drama in this movie is where I think it really shines too. There was plenty of great action sequences but there was a lot of real emotion in this film, something Bryan Singer has done so well with all his X-Men films.
Before this movie released and we got our first glimpse at Quicksilver the internet erupted into a frenzy hating on the costume. I for one did but you can chalk that up to a poor photograph on the cover of Empire Magazine. In the film his look fit and worked for his character, a teenage boy going through that phase most teenagers go through. His scenes were full of pure win with the breakout scene being one of the best in the movie.
Now with this movie meddling with the past and future of the X-Men franchise some things might come off as a bit confusing and contradict things from the other films. Does this movie retcon those other films? No, it essentially does what JJ Abrams Star Trek movies did. Created another timeline where they are free to do whatever they want. I’m now very curious to see where the future of this franchise goes, if they just continue with the First Class cast or if we might get a chance to see the original cast in a movie completely featuring them once more.
X-Men: Days of Future Past
Directed by Bryan Singer
Written by Simon Kinberg
Starring Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Halle Berry, Nicholas Hoult, Ellen Page, Peter Dinklage, Shawn Ashmore, Omar Sy, Evan Peters, Bingbing Fan, Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart
Runtime: 131 min
Release: May 23, 2014