MMT Quick Review of LOGAN by contributor Darryl King

Logan

Do you remember the time, when you fell in love… with Wolverine? Was it when he first appeared upon the comic page – the last pages of the Incredible Hulk #180? Was it during the fantastic run of the 90’s X-Men cartoon where the Wolverine became the linchpin of the series? Or was it on the silver screen, watching Hugh Jackman for 17 years capturing our hearts and imaginations as he defined the role for many generations.

After two lackluster films for the Wolverine, we finally arrive at the bitter end of perhaps an unfulfilling trilogy. In the film, “X-Men Apocalypse”, the Jean Grey character makes a self-prophesying joke that the third installment in most trilogies are usually the worst of the bunch. Oh, how right she was… especially in the X-Men movie world where Fox Studios continues to fall flat with its resolutions to their trilogy installments.

So, will this final Wolverine film capture us like the Weapon X program and bind us to mediocrity or will we be released from our shackles and, with Berserker rage, finally have the film that we as fans of Wolverine have been waiting for and deserve.

Well wait no longer, and retract your Adamantium claws, because “Logan” is a wonderful film. “Logan” is an emotional, character driven western starring mutants. Finally, a third installment from an X-Men trilogy that supersedes its predecessors.

“Logan” offers us the most in-depth look at the lives of Wolverine and Professor X, a film quite self-aware of the previous incarnations of these two mutants, and their respective journeys, but spawns a very fluent, yet interesting character study into the lives of Logan (Wolverine) and Professor X. This is not a movie about heroes vs villains, this is a film about the vicissitudes of life and where it leaves us. And with actors the caliber of Jackman and Stewart, perhaps for the first time artistic can be used to describe a superhero movie.

We are also introduced to the quiet, yet powerfully interesting mutant called X-23 (Dafne Keen), who is a mutant creation based upon the matrix and chemical make-up of the Wolverine. She is tortured with a similar transformation and indoctrinated with his rage, but if Logan has anything to do with it X-23 wouldn’t trace the same torment that has littered his path.

Maybe its poetic justice that now in his life Logan is forced to look back at the beginning by learning and protecting X-23, even perhaps crying out to her:

“Alone at first… the burnt orchard sun descending upon my withered soul, battered psyche and disintegrating body, …spilled over many generations. I have witnessed much over my lifetime… seen many wars and lived many battles. Saw friends and enemies pass me by, back to the earth from whence they’ve come.  I’ve seen Wade Wilson ruined and Deadpool restored, shared many conversations and secrets with two different Professor X’s, and also fell prey to a kaleidoscope of broken and roving mutant timelines… and yet I’m still here.

And so, I find myself at the end (maybe?) and as I look back over it all, I wish I could see the world through your innocent eyes. Your eyes conceivably aren’t so innocent and fresh, but I hope X-23, this world won’t jade you, shape you and make you someone you’re not.  Anger consumed my life and only now can I see beyond the blurred and crooked crimson timelines that flow from the crests of these weary eyes. Remember, your greatest weapon is not your claws, but your soul.”

The soul of a person truly is what the X-Men are all about. Beyond the powers and abilities, before the changes to bodies and beliefs, at the core is the soul – the common denominator of all humans. And for 17 years, the soul of the X-Men franchise has been the Wolverine character and its portrayal by Hugh Jackman. And if Hugh Jackman keeps his promise, and this is his last hurrah, then it has truly been a glorious ride.

Darryl KingDarryl King is a video director, film writer and avid Marvel/DC comic book/movie lover. Check out his reviews of Luke Cage, Xmen: Apocalypse and Dr. Strange right here on MMT.

GIVEAWAY: advanced screening for EDDIE THE EAGLE Wednesday, February 24 (Philly, PA)

Eddie the Eagle (20th Century Fox)

What’s new MMT Fam! I really love a good underdog story, and I’m hearing great things about the upcoming film EDDIE THE EAGLE – starring Taron Egerton, Hugh Jackman and Christopher Walken. The movie is based on the true story of Michael “Eddie” Edwards, a British ski-jumper who made a historic attempt at the 1988 Calgary Olympics.

To try your luck at a pair of passes, click here to go to the gofobo landing and follow the “get my passes” prompt.  All passes, like theater seating, are not guaranteed and are on a first-come, first-served basis.

You can read the film synopsis and watch the trailer below, and get additional info at the official website here.

Good luck family!

Until next thought, Thomasena

EDDIE THE EAGLE synopsis

Inspired by true events, Eddie the Eagle is a feel-good story about Michael “Eddie” Edwards (Taron Egerton), an unlikely but courageous British ski-jumper who never stopped believing in himself – even as an entire nation was counting him out.  With the help of a rebellious and charismatic coach (played by Hugh Jackman), Eddie takes on the establishment and wins the hearts of sports fans around the world by making an improbable and historic showing at the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics.  From producers of Kingsman: The Secret Service, Eddie the Eagle stars Taron Egerton as Eddie, the loveable underdog with a never say die attitude.

 

 

 

GIVEAWAY: advanced screening of PAN on October 3 (Philadelphia, PA)

PAN (photo: Warner Bros.)

Hey MMT Fam! We have a special giveaway for admit-four family packs to PAN this Saturday, October 3. I’m excited to see Hugh Jackman as Blackbeard in this one! How about you? Want to put your name in the hat for passes?

To enter the contest, you must be a subscriber of this site and send an email with your full name in the body and the subject line “PAN” to contests@musicmoviesthoughts.com. Twenty winners will be selected at random and notified on Friday, October 2.

You can watch the trailer for PAN below and get additional info at the official website here.

Good luck family! Thomasena

MMT Quick Review of X-Men Days of Future Past

X-Men Days of Future Past (x-menmovies.com)

Happy Memorial Day Weekend MMT Family!  With the weather being so conflicting, it almost doesn’t seem like the beginning of summer!  But oh if The Amazing Spiderman 2 didn’t hype it enough, and if Godzilla hasn’t stomped it in, then my top pick of this weekend X-Men: Days of Future Past will definitely transport the summer blockbuster season right into place!

So here’s the synopsis:

The ultimate X-Men ensemble fights a war for the survival of the species across two time periods in X-Men: Days of Future Past. The characters from the original X-Men film trilogy join forces with their younger selves from X-Men: First Class in an epic battle that must change the past – to save our future. The X-Men send Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.

Along with Wolverine, the main X-Men players in this film are Professor X, Magneto, Mystique, Beast, Storm, Kitty Pryde, Iceman, Quicksilver, Bishop, Blink, Colossus, and Warpath.  Now, for the folk who aren’t X-Men followers, those names may not mean as much, but know that this movie is not just for the X-Men comic/movie fans and really has a great story within. The one thing I’ve always appreciated about this comic series are the civil rights stories they’ve incorporated and the humanity displayed by each character.  This movie is no exception; however it is the darkest of the X-Men movies and I would definitely note the PG-13 rating and not take younger kids.

Also the CGI and the fight scenes are incredible!  I viewed it in 3D; however I believe the scenes play out just as well without it (and will be going to see it again non-3D this weekend!). And you guys know I don’t do spoilers BUT I do want to encourage you to stay past the credits. Most fans of the movie already know that’s where the teasers are, and this one gives a teaser for the next film “X-Men Apocalypse.”  If you want further explanation of the scene and the character Apocalypse, and don’t mind spoilers, click here for a cool article on the MTV site.

Lastly, and maybe some of my fellow X-Men lovers/Mental Health professionals can help me out.  Is it just me or does Magneto (Ian McKellan/Michael Fassbender) really have ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder)??? LOL, I mean yes he’s suffered horrendous things in childhood and I used to think his behavior reminiscent of PTSD, but no – he is just oppositional and often for no good reason!!!  Go see the movie, pay attention to the stadium/white house scene and let me know if you agree! 🙂

Checkout the official trailer for X-Men Days of Future Past below, and you can get additional info and buy tickets for the film at the official website here.

Alright family, I’ll be posting a review of Blended tomorrow so stay tuned!  And as always, please stop back and share a thought or two about the movie after you see it.

Until next thought, Thomasena

A Quick Review of Les Miserables and Django Unchained

Les_Miserables_Hathaway

Merry Christmas Music Movie Family! I pray that your holiday is filled with good people, good music, and great food! Are you headed to the movies today to see either of the major films opening that are being lauded, à la Les Miserables or Django Unchained? I screened both within the past month and would or would not recommend both based on your personal taste and/or preferences.

Let’s start with the musical Les Miserables. I mean, the production – stellar. The cast performances amazing, well except for Russell Crowe’s singing (sorry Russell, but you know it’s true). But all the hoopla about Anne Hathaway’s (Rachel Getting Married, The Dark Knight Rises) performance is the TRUTH. She was phenomenal as Fantine, a part she said her mother was understudy for during her performance days. And Hugh Jackman (X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Real Steel) astounded as Jean Valjean, wait until you see how much weight he lost for the part! If you are not familiar with the musical, it is far from being a lighthearted Mary Poppins type of story, and is not a good choice for a younger audience (it is rated PG-13). So if you need to take the kiddies with you to the theater, Les Miserables is not the choice for you. You can read more about the story or watch the trailer at http://www.lesmiserablesfilm.com/.

Which brings me to Django. Now I must preface this review with I was on the “I won’t go see Django Unchained” team when I first heard about the film. But a screening opportunity presented itself, and I’d read so many controversial statements and articles about, that I became intrigued and decided to check it out. I also enjoyed the Tarantino vehicles Kill Bill (Vol. 1 and 2) and Reservoir Dogs, so I went to the film expecting to see a bunch of gore, especially with the content matter. And boy does Quentin Tarantino do gore. Needless to say, Django is not the family Christmas movie, unless your hanging with a bunch of adults or older teens (it has an R rating).

Django_Unchained_PosterIf you don’t know the premise, the movie is about a former slave named Django (Jamie Foxx; Ray, Any Given Sunday) who with the help of his bounty hunter mentor Schultz (Christoph Waltz; Inglourious Basterds, Carnage) attempts to rescue his wife Broomhilda (Kerry Washington; Ray, The Last King of Scotland). The duo finds out that Broomhilda is on a Mississippi plantation called Candyland, owned by a brutal master named Candie (Leonardo DiCaprio; The Departed, Inception), and formulate a shady plan to gain her freedom. Now if you can go into Django Unchained with the mindset that Tarantino is an overzealous fan of 60’s and 70’s spaghetti western and blaxploitation movies, and this is his super violent mash-up of the two, you might actually enjoy this film. I enjoyed parts of the story, mostly when the bad guys received their comeuppance, but the film began to lull midway, and I felt it was too long. My biggest problem with Django is slavery is too heavy a topic for me to view intertwined with fantasy. Even though Jamie Foxx described it on a recent award show as “Kunta Kinte gets his revenge,” I don’t buy it. There was nothing fantastic about slavery and, as original as it is, Django didn’t convince me a revenge story needed to be told in this fashion. You can get more info about or watch the trailer for Django Unchained at http://unchainedmovie.com/

If you’re looking for another film to see tomorrow, and don’t have to worry about the kids, check out The Impossible with Golden Globe nominated actress Kate Winslet, which is based on a true family’s survival of the 2004 tsunami tragedy. And if you have the kiddies, why not Monsters Inc., which was re-released in 3D? Whichever film you decide to see, stop back by and let me know your thoughts.

Merry Christmas family. Until next thought, Thomasena