I hate this silly and juvenile idea people have that somehow giving something an R Rating will automatically make a movie better, or the only reason a film sucked was because it was PG or PG-13 instead of R. This has been one of the ongoing complaints from fans of Wolverine for years. Logan is the R-Rated Wolverine film fans have been begging for is finally upon us. But is it any good?
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Not quite sure how I feel about Logan. You could convince me either way. On the one hand it’s everything that I would want in a Logan movie, on the other hand I felt like it was missing something and there was another, better, movie that could have made if they expanded the scope or had a bigger budget to do more. As it is the movie feels a little too insular and hard to grab hold of. It doesn’t help that the trailers spoils the entire movie. Every “surprise,” and action scene is given away and nothing about the film made me go wow. If I went into it cold, I would have come away absolutely in love. As it is the movie felt like an overly serious Deadpool.
I don’t think Fox and the original X-Men Movie (along with Blade) for launching the current boom in Super Hero films that it deserves. Yes X3 sucked and the last two Wolverine films had issues, but overall they’ve done justice to the X-Men franchise. Can you get more perfect casting than Hugh Jackman as Wolverine? Everyone is saying this is Jackman’s last outing and it’s an interesting way to go out.
Logan is firmly set in the same universe as the other X-Men films, this shouldn’t be a surprise. Through all the films and the numerous bits of dumb time travelling excursions the franchise has always managed to maintain a weird sort of consistency. This is both a good and bad thing. It’s good because it means that we didn’t waste our time investing in this universe only to have everything we saw magically get wiped away. It’s bad, because everything that we’ve seen before is basically futile. There’s no universe where our heroes will get a happily ever after. So why waste time watching all of these previous films if we know there’s no good end for these characters?
Logan is basically a road trip movie disguised as a super hero film. A nurse who knows who Logan is asks him to take a little girl to Arizona. He of course doesn’t want to have anything to do with this job, he assumes that because the Nurse knows he’s Wolverine there is probably something off with her. His suspicions are confirmed when a mystery man named Pierce (Boyd Holbrook) gets into his car and tells Logan not to get involved and he should focus on keeping his “friend,” safe.
Logan of course gets involved and ends up protecting the girl, while also keeping Charles Xavior from having a meltdown. He’s suffering from Dementia and has to be kept under control by Logan. Apparently Xavier did something in the past that destroyed the X-Men and may have led to Mutants being wiped out. Every time the movie hints at this disaster, I kept thinking I’d rather be watching that movie then what we are getting.
Directed by James Mangold (Walk The Line, 3:10 To Yuma), The action scenes in this film are visceral and raw. When Logan and Laura go to town, there’s no sugar coating the fact that they are severing heads, limbs, and just generally stabbing people. In that sense the R Rating does enhance the movie, but those action beats are few and far between and when that’s not happening the rest of the movie just felt really slow and relentlessly depressing and hopeless and it’s not visually interesting to look at either.
I’m not saying I didn’t like Logan, I did, but I wasn’t as excited as I was after seeing the first trailer. This is a film that I’ll probably never want to watch again.
Final Grade B-