After Bryan Singer combined the old with the new versions of the X-Men in Days of Future Past, the director essentially reset the film timeline with a clean slate to move forward with his First Class series. With the future being saved, Xavier and his gang of mutants now must take on the biggest bad from X-Men lore in the form of Apocalypse. The world’s first mutant from ancient Egypt who reappears in 1983 with the agenda of creating a new world by bringing the end of days to humanity in X-Men: Apocalypse.
Delving into the Apocalypse storyline seemed like a good idea on paper, but sometimes certain storylines and characters don’t translate well from the comics to the big screen. This is definitely the case with X-Men: Apocalypse. Oscar Isaac plays the ultimate X-Men foe and the blue look and demeanor of En Sabah Nur is quite goofy at times. His powers and history are not fully explained, which could leave some X-Men novices lost as to what this ancient being is all about in this new Marvel movie.
The X-Men franchise is known for giving depth to their villains’ motives where the audience understands what made them break bad. Sometimes you end up rooting for the vengeful Magneto (Michael Fassbender), because you understand his issues with the humans who have a bloody history of fearing anyone who is different from them. Plain and simple, Apocalypse is a mutant who just has a generic plan to destroy the world. Nothing more. Also not having the glorious 1980’s be a character in itself like in previous films taking place in the 1960s and 1970s is a major missed opportunity for some nostalgic fun.
Besides Singer’s villain problems in X-Men: Apocalypse, a strength of the director in past films turns into a weakness this go around. Singer has a hard time juggling the enormous cast including some fresh new faces playing old favorites including Game of Thrones‘ Sophie Turner as Jean Grey and Alexandra Shipp as Storm. Singer throws everyone into the pot and begins to churn resulting in a predictable outcome in X-Men: Apocalypse‘s bloated 143 minute running time. There are some entertaining sequences including Quicksilver (Evan Peters) stealing the show again and another big moment we won’t spoil that is cool for X-Men aficionados, but does nothing for the overall story.
Magneto, one of the more interesting players involved in past films, is reduced to a henchman this go around and Jennifer Lawrence looks to have thrown around her star power keeping herself out of the Mystique makeup for most of the film. To have two great actors such as Fassbender and Lawrence look as if they’re just going through the motions in X-Men: Apocalypse is a letdown. The film has some big mutant throw downs, which should please die-hard X-Men fans, but for the most part X-Men: Apocalypse feels as if we’ve seen all these scenarios done before, only better in previous entries in the franchise.
Overall, I give X-Men: Apocalypse 2.5 out of 4 stars.
Read all my reviews here–>Entertainment Now with T.M. Powell