Even before it was officially announced that Hugh Jackman was doing another and final Wolverine film, fans were already going crazy over the little teases that had been circulating over the Internet at that time. They, myself included, also went crazy when the teasers, trailers and posters started coming out. Now, finally, after the long anticipated wait for it, “Logan”, one of my most anticipated films for the year, and the film which marks the last time we will see Hugh Jackman AND Patrick Stewart in their respective roles as Logan/Wolverine and Charles Xavier/Professor X, has finally arrived.
(Actually, it was only recently that Stewart announced his retirement from the franchise, but with Jackman “hanging up his claws” after this film, I was not surprised, and for me, it seems like an interesting retirement of the “old guard”, so to speak.)
“Logan”, the tenth X-Men movie and the final chapter in the Wolverine film series is set in 2029, in a dystopic version of America, where an older, tired looking Logan (Hugh Jackman), is no longer the hero known as Wolverine. However, through unexpected circumstances, a young girl named Laura (Dafne Keen) comes into his life, prompting a reluctant Logan and an ailing Charles Xavier, to go on a road trip across a more hostile America. This was directed by James Mangold, who also directed the 2013 film”The Wolverine”.
As this is the final Wolverine film, and with the rating the film was given, from the get go, you can already expect that this will be violent and bloody. However, it isn’t TOO gory, as my mother was also able to handle the amount of violence and blood that came with it.
The rating of the film, for me, was justifiable, because of the story, material, and because everything in it felt organic and not too gratuitous.
This film, despite being tagged as a superhero film, for me, is not a superhero film at all. Instead, it was more human, character and relationship driven, gritty, and had such a realness to it that most superhero films don’t have. It delved right into the core of the relationships between Logan and Charles, and between Logan and Laura; and it allowed itself to be just a good film about relationships and self-rediscovery.
I didn’t expect to get emotional about the film, as much as I am now; and unexpectedly, this is a movie that gets better on the second watch, and the more you think about the poignant, quiet moments in the film, and the core message of the film.
Before I go any further into spoilers territory, I just have to say that there is no post-credits scene at the end of the film, so you can leave after the film is done. (However, some theaters apparently showed the “Deadpool 2” teaser video before the film, but over here, they didn’t do that).
If you haven’t seen the movie yet, please, please turn around now, because there really will be spoilers from this point on.
As I said earlier, “Logan” is the type of film that you would want to watch at least twice, just because I think it gets even better on the second watch. Aside from that, “Logan” is the type of film that gets better and better the more you think about it, and what happened in the film.
The entire film, from the opening scene, to the very end, was everything you would expect from a Wolverine film, and more. It was character driven, and relied heavily on the main relationships in the film- Logan and Charles Xavier, and Logan and Laura. I think that those things made the film the most realistic and most human superhero film I have ever seen.
Logan’s relationship with Charles is really something special, and it was even more highlighted here, as Logan is taking care of Charles, who now has a degenerative brain disease which causes him to have seizures that end up paralyzing humans, and even killed mutants that they were close to. This deepened relationship between them makes the scene of him getting killed by a genetically altered younger clone version of Logan, while he was having a moment with whom he thought was the older Logan, even more tragic.
I actually did not expect that Charles would die in this film, and his death began to make me more sad, following the fact that Charles realized that he had hurt people before due to his seizures. (Also, afterwards, it made more sense as to why Stewart does not want to return as well to the film franchise.)
And of course, this led to Logan to be in more of an emotional slump during the rest of the journey. In fact, at that point, he really did not want to take Laura to the place where she claimed the other genetically engineered children were waiting. However, from there on out, the film started to delve deeper into a more budding father and daughter relationship between Logan and Laura, which was ultimately realized at the end, with Logan going all out, teaming up with Laura, while fighting off the bad guys, while protecting her and her friends.
This is also what made the ending heartbreaking- with Laura sobbing over a dying Logan, calling him “Daddy”; Logan imparting his last few words of advice and realizing how wonderful it feels to have a daughter, to have family again, before he expires; and with Laura eulogizing over his little funeral and making the cross on his grave an X.
That speech she gave at the end, quoting from that Western “Shane” was a perfect summary of the film, and of Logan himself, as he finally was at rest, at peace, with the knowledge that Laura will be able to be better, and to accept herself for who she is, and not as a man made killing machine.
This film not only was a swan song for both Charles Xavier and Logan, but for me, it was the perfect goodbye to the “old guard” in the X-Men film franchise. Now, looking forward to the future, or rather to the past, when it comes to the core X-Men, timeline or continuity wise, we are now going to be a little bit more focused on the younger versions.
I also love how the film also felt a little bit like a Western, a genre that I am not really fond off, but it works well with this story.
Each performance, especially from Stewart, Jackman and Dafne Keen was wonderful, to the point that I do think that Stewart and Jackman should get nominated for their performances here. Stephen Merchant was wonderful as Caliban, whose character also broke my heart when he blew himself up in order to save Laura, Logan and Charles.
Dafne Keen gave such a wonderful, solid performance as this feral, angry little girl, who also deeply cares about those she loves. One of the best things about her is the fact that even though she didn’t have a lot of lines, her presence was strong, and everything she did was just emotionally charged.
The action sequences in this film were crazily amazing. And I was surprised that they brought out a younger clone version of Logan for him to go against. I also loved that part when they were dragging Laura away at their ranch, and then she reveals that she has a toe claw, which she then begins to use to her advantage. They definitely didn’t hold back with this one, but at the same time, they knew how to utilize the quieter beats and moments to create wonderful poignant scenes.
My only gripes about the film was that I felt that the energy dipped a little bit after Logan and Laura arrived at “Eden”, and that at some points I couldn’t understand what they were saying, but that could also be because of the sound system of the cinema I was watching the film at. Again, the villains didn’t have that much depth to them, but they definitely served their purpose, and I didn’t really mind it at all.
In the end, “Logan” not only was the perfect send off for two of the most beloved characters in the X-Men film franchise; but proved that in this genre, it is possible to have a wonderfully complex and well-made film, that just so happened to have superheroes in them.
TIP: Watch the movie at least twice, and if you want to, watch “Days of Future Past” before watching this film so that you can get a sense of the timeline of where he is at the moment.
- The first instance we witness Charles Xavier’s seizure, and that entire first sequence of Logan and him talking.
- The fact that Laura and Professor X were communicating with each other telepathically.
- That moment when Laura reveals that she ALSO has a foot claw and uses it to her advantage.
- Laura going into a convenience store, getting food and sunglasses, then gets stopped by Logan before she impales the store clerk, then Logan goes and does the exact thing he told Laura not to do, grabs something from the counter, doesn’t pay for it, and leaves with Laura in tow.
- Logan making his way to Charles during his seizure at the casino, killing the bad guys, and giving Charles his medicine.
- Charles realizing what he had done before.
- The dinner with the Munsons, with Charles and Logan talking about their past, a wonderful nod and homage to their past films.
- Charles having a moment with Logan at the Munsons.
- The entire Munson farm fight sequence.
- The entire forest fight sequence, from juiced up Old Man Logan, to that father-daughter team up fight, to the very end of that sequence.
- The two funerals.
- Don’t be what they made you.- Logan (Hugh Jackman) to Laura (Dafne Keen)
- Charles Xavier: They need our help.
- Donald Pierce: Charles Xavier, the world famous mutant octogenarian.
- Laura: You are dying. You want to die.
- “Joey, there’s no living with a killing. There’s no going back from it. Right or wrong, it’s a brand, a brand that sticks. There’s no going back. Now you run on home to your mother and tell her, tell her everything’s alright, and there aren’t any more guns in the valley. ” – Laura quoting a line from “Shane” at the very end of the movie