lohan

‘Logan’ a Marvel majesty

Mar 23 • Arts & Leisure • 1258

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DANIEL KAUFMANN

You can’t beat a Monday night to go see a movie.  With front-row parking and immediate seating, you are guaranteed at the very least, to have a comfortable and relaxed viewing experience.

As my wife, a friend and I entered the Tinseltown theatre there was no rush to be there early to grab a decent seat like you would on an opening weekend.   Indeed, we were all happy with sitting nearly in the center.  No sore necks or eye strain for us.

Wolverine is one of the most recognizable characters of the Marvel Universe alongside the likes of Spider-Man and Captain America.

He is a surly, cigar-smoking living weapon, who is the “best at what he does and what he does is not very nice,” and Hugh Jackman was born to play that role on the big screen.

Jackman has the look, the muscle and for anyone familiar with the comic adaptation, the attitude that makes one think no other actor could ever bear those claws.

Pair him with the venerable Sir Patrick Stewart, also born for the role of Professor Charles Xavier, and you have an on-screen combination of talent that makes for a spectacular show.  And spectacular it was.

“Logan” is the ninth time Jackman has reprised the role of Wolverine, six for the series of X-Men movies and three movies strictly about Wolverine and his origins.

Now let’s all be straight here by saying not all previous Wolverine reprisals have been great, not so much because of the actors but more because of the storylines.

“The Wolverine,” the second stand-alone Wolverine movie, left much to be desired.

Jackman played the part superbly as always, but with characters poorly portrayed and honestly not very interesting, I forgot most of it by the time I got home.

James Mangold, who directed “The Wolverine,” returned to direct “Logan” and after the bitter taste his previous attempt with this amazing character left me, I was understandably apprehensive.  But I am happy to say that he successfully redeemed himself.

“Logan” takes place in the year 2029 in a world far different from anything we have seen in previous X-men or Wolverine movies and introduces the character Laura Kinney, aka X-23 played by Dafne Keen.

Keen, a 12-year-old Spanish/English actress does an excellent job with her portrayal of this character by easily tapping into the rage necessary for the part.

She fit into her role just as perfectly as Stephen Merchant did his role of Caliban, a mutant able to track and identify fellow mutants.

X-23 bears many similarities to Logan, such as adamantine claws and a superior healing factor which raises the question of her origins.

Her origins are somewhat an integral part of the plot as she is not the only child with special abilities, all of whom are under the mentoring of Dr. Zander Rice (Richard E. Grant).

If the name Rice rings a bell it is because a certain Dale Rice, Zander’s father, worked on the original Weapon X program.

That’s right — the very same program that gave Logan his shiny, sharp slashers. Try saying that three times fast.

We enter the film with Logan, Caliban and Professor Xavier all struggling with issues, both past and present, in a world that a violent and depressing past has placed them in.

They are muddling through life as best they can when things are set in motion by Laura Kinney being unexpectedly placed in Logan’s care.

Enter the Reavers, and let the chase begin.

Led by Pierce (Boyd Holbrook), the sleazy and immediately detestable Reaver, they begin an all-out blood fest to regain Laura.

From this point on we see from the violent and gory action how the movie earns its R-rating, much to the lamentations of my 12-year-old step-son, who was not allowed to see it.

Do not be misled that the movie is nothing more than dismemberments and decapitations.  The emotional aspect will keep you nail biting as much as the high-speed action.

The cinematography is spot-on in depicting a world that is obviously missing something – a vibrancy of color that leaves you with a sense that the Earth is sick or incomplete.

This ties in beautifully with Logan, who also is struggling with a sickness that manifests through visible scar tissues and a limp, things we would think unlikely from someone with adamantium bones and near-perfect healing factor.

This is reportedly the last time we will get to see Jackman play this part, and although this saddens me, he is without a doubt leaving the role on a high note.

“Logan” is an action-packed hit loaded with gut-wrenching emotions and cringe-worthy violence that can only be expected from a mutant made into a living weapon.  Comic fans will rejoice in this Marvel majesty and those unfamiliar with the universe in play are guaranteed a great movie moment.  Excelsior!

DANIEL KAUFMANN

kaufmann003@knights.gannon.edu

 

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