Friday, May 1, 2009


SUPERPOWER GAINED FROM WATCHING MOVIE: The Ability To Get The 2009 Summer Movie Season Rolling, Crashing


Wolvie Wang Wafting in the Wind; Orson Welles, Sideburn Assassin; Butterblob; Van Wilder the Sarcastic Ninja; Good.He.Ain’t; a Lost Hobbit; a discount Chow Yun Fat; non-yummy bear claws; Huston, we have a problem; the Revenge of the Ginsu Mutant; a McConaughey School Flunky; a One-Man Comic Book Convention; and a buff clawed Danny Kaye who gets some payback.

More details here.


The Canadian wilderness, 1854. Jimmy is a sickly boy struggling to recover from illness while his friend Victor and his father care for him. Dad is then shot by an overly facial-haired intruder who claims to be both Victor’s and Jimmy's real father. Upon seeing his dead father, Jimmy is suddenly possessed by the spirit of Hayden Christensen, screams into the air, and stabs the shooter with claws protruding from his hands. Victor and Jimmy run away from home, discover their animal-like powers, ability to heal fast, and head south to the U.S. There, they engage in every war since the Civil War. As adults, Jimmy (Hugh Jackman) and Victor (Live Schreiber) get into lots of trouble when Victor goes on a mad killing spree in Vietnam and while trying to stop him, Jimmy kills a commanding officer. When they survive a firing squad, the military discovers their amazing powers which attracts the attention of William Stryker (Danny Huston), a shadowy government figure. Stryker recruits them to join an elite covert team of super-powered individuals including teleporting Wraith (Will.I.Am), agile swordsman Wade (Ryan Reynolds), portly and invincible Dukes (Kevin Durand), electro-psychic Bolt (Dominic Monaghan), and acrobatic shooter Agent Zero (Daniel Henney). The team performs all kinds of covert operations in search of a mysterious metal that obsesses Stryker to the point of killing innocents. Jimmy draws the line at murdering civilians and quits, much to Victor and Stryker’s dismay. He finds a new life as a lumberjack and shacks up with Kayla (Lynn Collins), a beautiful schoolteacher with a mystifying power of her own. But someone is killing off Jimmy’s old teammates one by one, and it looks like he’s next on the hit list. He discovers the killer is Victor who then kills Kayla to attract his attention. Distraught. disturbed, and pissed-off as hell, Jimmy (now named Logan) is enlisted by Stryker once again, embarks on a mission of blood-soaked scratchy vengeance, and participates in an operation that will change him and the future of Oscar telecasting forever.


To butcher a famous colloquialism, prequels are about as necessary as a paraplegic in a butt-kicking contest, and never as entertaining as their premise promises. X-Men Origins: Wolverine is everything you would expect from an unnecessary prequel, the “yes, I know” allusions to the referential material, the rare “so that’s why X is so X” exposition, and the always present “you know, I really didn’t need to know that” realizations. For many years, the best part of the comic book Wolverine’s backstory was its arcane mystery and always changing detail. Once it was revealed (recently, I am told), the character lost of some its edginess and power. The same thing kind of happens here, but only resonates if you are passionate fan of the original X-men movies. In the comics, Wolverine was a distempered killer tamed by love, tortured by his past, and motivated by his desire to protect those of his own kind. The movie Wolverine is a much simpler beast, a do-gooder with an animal instinct to kill, but with an unexplained conscience. Consequently, the movie reeks of “eh, that was OK, I guess” and will probably only appeal to either the fiercest Wolverine fans or those that especially appreciate rippled, vein-popping beefcake. The action sequences are mostly OK, except for an eye-popping scene involving a helicopter, two jeeps, a motorcycle, and Jackman’s manicurist that’s probably the highlight of the movie. Director Gavin Hood (Tsotsi, Rendition) is clearly phoning this one in, despite rumored assistance from Superman’s Richard Donner, and his inexperience with big budget blockbusters is certainly showing in the movie’s slow pace and unemotional motivation for the Logan/Victor conflict. Wolverine is pure escapist summer-movie brain-numbing lameness, but fortunately it doesn’t bore you to death, just to mild sleepiness and occasional claw marks.

(NOTE: This review is based on the final print of the film released to the Lithuanian Film Critics Association in conjunction with the Illuminati, Knights Templar, and the Pirtleville, Arizona Jaycees. It was by no means downloaded from some joker with a grudge against Hugh Jackman’s pectorals or a crazy cat lady with a Mac, a Vuze account, and naked pictures of Stan Lee. Nor was it illegally obtained using some kind of backwater internet service such as RapidShare, EasyNews, or America Online. Really.)

1 comment:

Caffeinated said...

Making this movie R-rated would have helped it out in so many ways... they wouldn't have had to try so hard to soften up such an inherently gory story line