Maddy’s Movies: “X-Men: Days of Future Past” is for mutant lovers, not action enthusiasts


I may not be as crazy about the “X-Men” series as I am with “The Avengers” but I was looking forward to seeing some awesome mutant action and how director Bryan Singer would balance the past with the future in “X-Men: Days of Future Past.”

Sadly, all I got was a Hugh Jackman and Jennifer Lawrence movie with a whole lot of confusion.

In “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” the mutants we’ve come to know and love through “X-Men,” “X-Men: United,” “X-Men: The Last Stand” and “X-Men: First Class” are facing a whole new danger to their species.

Huge robot-like machines known as Sentinels have eliminated nearly all mutants and their human allies, leaving humanity living in a very bleak, apocalyptic world.

But hope comes in the form of Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page). The girl most known for running through walls also has the power to send a person’s consciousness back in time and deliver warnings to friends.

Cue stud-muffin and favorite tough guy Logan (Hugh Jackman), aka Wolverine, who volunteers himself to go back in time, find the younger selves of Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart/James McAvoy) and Erik Lehnsherr (Ian McKellen/Michael Fassbender), aka Magneto, and stop this crazy war on mutants before it ever starts.

That’s right. We’re going back to 1973 while also staying in the future (or is it the present?).

The plot may seem pretty hard to understand at first. There is so much going on with old characters meeting new characters and one movie being referenced with another movie.

But don’t let this stop you. Be patient.

The movie does eventually explain things that would leave casual watchers of the “X-Men” series, like myself, going “whaaat?”

There weren’t enough action or epic fight scenes in this movie — at least for me. However, I did just see “Godzilla” for the second time, so maybe my expectations were a little high.

Though it lacked action, what the movie does have is exceptional acting.

Among the cast are legends Stewart and McKellen, but it’s McAvoy and Fassbender who really shine in their roles. McAvoy plays a young and broken Charles Xavier who wants nothing more to do with his fellow mutants or his ex-best friend, Magneto. Charles has lost all hope after Mystique’s (Jennifer Lawrence) abandonment and turns to drugs to forget not only her but his power as well. At the same time, Fassbender’s Erik is the one who feels abandoned by Charles and in a confrontation scene you remember just how connected Erik’s powers are to his emotions.

Peter Dinklage plays the man behind the Sentinels, Dr. Bolivar Trask. Brilliant as ever, Dinklage at times seemed a bit like his “Game of Thrones” character Tyrion Lannister but with a more “let’s wipe out an entire species” attitude. Dinklage’s Trask is great as an evil genius type, but I still feel his machines were the real threat of the movie.

There were also some super cool new characters introduced in this film that I wish would have been explored more.

Evan Peter’s Quicksilver character was a favorite of mine, adding some much needed humor and action to the movie. And though I know nothing about the character Blink (Bingbing Fan), I fell in love with her portal-like powers.

It was nice to see old favorites like Iceman/Bobby (Shawn Ashmore) and Storm (Halle Berry), but their time in the film is so short it only increased the feeling that this was just a Wolverine and Mystique movie.

Don’t get me wrong. Lawrence and Jackman are great in this film, I just would have liked to see more from the other characters.

I give “X-Men: Days of Future Past” two and half out of four mutants. The acting was great, the action was par, but the continuity was my biggest hurdle in this film. I think I’ll stick with team Avengers and their movies as I know and love them a bit more than the X-Men.

For you die-hard fans, be sure to stick around for the after credits scene. And for you causal fans, do what I did — turn to your buddy and ask “What?”