After 17 years of playing this character Hugh Jackman is retiring as being Logan/Wolverine. In his films they haven’t been well received previously due to studio meddling and interference in the director’s creative vision rather than trust the talent. With this film they really got their creative voice in charge here by showcasing the comics version of Wolverine within the context of the universe they set up in the films. For this film to be Rated R is such a change of pace and something to be praised. The change of tone and style really shows and betters the film.
The performances by Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart really elevate the film from a creative standpoint. They have been playing the same character for a while and didn’t have much of a chance to do something new with it until this film. The characters are both at the end of their lives and ready to move on. Logan is taking care of his surrogate father — Charles Xavier, in Mexico to make sure he doesn’t become a problem to harm others. With this appearance with this girl who is stumbled into their lives they go on a journey across Middle-America.
Dafne Keen does a solid performance as Laura (X-23), and brings her acting chops by just showing her emotions than speaking or using a lot of dialogue. She plays well off of both Jackman and Stewart in the film. I am hoping they utilize her in future X-23 films, even X-Force. Boyd Holbrook and Richard Grant are the villains of the film who ultimately serve as plot devices but have a very solid purpose in making it a simplistic story, which benefits the film. Boyd’s character of Donald Pierce was so charismatic. He had a great southern charm as a villain who clearly was evil. You felt that he was doing the right thing in helping the adversarially corporation control mutants.
Two days on the road, only one meal, and hardly any sleep. She’s 11, I’m fucking 90…
Why this film works so well beyond it being a Comic book film is that it’s a character study. Hugh Jackman put all his effort into telling a good story for the fans that really goes out on a high note which he brilliantly executed with the director James Mangold. It is also a western in a storytelling perspective and thematically overall. The greatest Comic book films now aren’t just action spectacles– they are emotional character pieces that make the hero more well rounded and dynamic.
The end of this film is so powerful in its execution of sending Wolverine off after 17 years of being on screen. I don’t think they will recast him for decades after this performance. With the writing, directing and acting so critically lauded by everyone I would not be surprised this film gets some awards. I think this is Best Picture worthy as well as Best Actor and Supporting Actor for Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart Respectively.
Overall, go see this film if you’ve followed this series as long as the start in 2000. It is a strong farewell for Hugh Jackman and the original X-Men crew as they dive deep into the adult rated Comic book films and other spin-offs. Don’t bring your kids to this though. If they are under 15 they shouldn’t see it.