Hello everyone, and welcome to the newest segment on our website: Review Rewinds. What it is, is a chance for us to review older superhero or sci-fi films that came out years ago, but the catch is, each review will mostly follow a theme. With Logan hitting theaters in less than a month, we thought we’d start the series off by reviewing X-Men Origins: Wolverine, and later this month, The Wolverine. That’s enough explaining though, let’s get right to it.
So X-Men Origins: Wolverine was released in 2009 and was directed by Gavin Hood, and it followed the story of James Howlett, aka Logan, aka wolverine, from childhood to adulthood through a series of traumatic events that shaped the antihero we all know and love today.
I watched this film today for the first time in years, and my opinion on it has not changed much: It’s pretty bad. In the beginning, we’re introduced to a young Wolverine and Sabertooth (or James and Victor), and after a short series of events, James kills a man, not knowing that he was his real father. Clearly, there’s some history here that unless you’re a comic book buff, you’re going to be slightly confused. Either way, this is meant to set up a sort of relationship between the two characters as brothers. It barely did that. In fact, none of the characters in this film were actually that compelling. Hugh Jackman always does great as Wolverine, but beyond him i don’t think there was any performance in this movie worth mentioning. It just felt like they threw these characters in the movie just to have a full roster, not because they really wanted to make a good story. This movie seemed to be an origin for other characters too (Cyclops, Emma Frost, “Deadpool”), but they introduced each character in a rather cheesy and uninteresting way. Plus, no offense to Ryan Reynolds, but that THING was not Deadpool. Thank God he did that character justice least year.
Let’s talk about the overall story in this movie. It was pretty fast paced at the beginning (but that seemed to be intended, hence the montage), but then it just…stayed at that same pace all the way through. Like they showed Wolverine and Sabertooth join up with this team of enhanced individuals, and we see them together on screen for about 20 minutes, then James gets mad, leaves, and now we’re 6 years into the future. Just like that. It felt like the writers really just wanted to get to the part where Wolverine gets the adamantium, which is cool and all because that’s the Wolverine we all know.
Till this day I honestly think we just didn’t need this movie, because truthfully the only interesting part of Wolverine’s past is the time during the Weapon X experiment. Most scenes lacked the emotion they were trying to convey, and others just lacked excitement. The latter was mostly comprised of action sequences. Let’s dive into those.
The action in this film felt decent at times, and very unexciting and over the top during other times. There was a very prevalent overuse of wire work in this movie, because it seemed like each character was wearing shoes with box springs in them. Why was everyone flying halfway across the screen? Lord knows, but it looks tacky. There wasn’t much hand-to-hand combat here, but the little that this film had was very simple. But to be fair, they didn’t really need it much for the characters that were presented in the film. That one scene where “Wade Wilson” comes out of the elevator and starts deflecting all of those bullets: yeah, that was cool.
The visuals are one of the positives that this film had. It looks like they spent a bit of time fine-tuning each scene that was CGI-heavy, and it shows. Even eight years later, it all still holds up.
I really didn’t want to spend too much time dissecting this film, because everyone that’s seen it pretty much feels the same way on it. In the end, X-Men Origins: Wolverine is one of those action films that you could just never see and you won’t be missing anything The pacing was off, the story wasn’t very compelling, and the supporting actors were forgettable. What’s worse, the director completely destroyed a loved comic book character for the sake of creating his own vision of them. We see now that things like that never work out (looking at you, F4ntastic). Hugh Jackman was, of course, the best part of the film, and it’s clear that he did the best he could with this one. At the end, it looked like they had plans to follow through with this story in some way or another, but we’re glad that they didn’t, because wow.
Final Score: 4.5 out of 10
Thanks for reading guys. This is only the beginning of these type of Reviews! The Wolverine is next on the list, so look out for that within a week or so. Catch you guys next time.