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X Men: The Last Stand
What did I expect? After the towering brilliance of X2, revisiting the exact same theme with 2500 characters was bound to be an exercise in special effects, trite dialogue, vast violence and guest stars. And so it has proved.
But the theme of prejudice in terms of ‘doing away with the feared mutants’ takes a new twist; this time they are not simply to be destroyed, but cured of their mutation, as if it were a disease. So this time it’s people who are HIV+ that come in for a kicking, and end up on the winning side. Oh, sorry, should have realised that mutation is good; that being different is the same as being better.
The character that gives the lie to this rubbish is of course the one with the lips – Rogue. She wants to hold and kiss her boyfriend, buy cannot as she hurts anyone who touches physically - he certainly has my sympathy – so she volunteers for the cure, which means she gets to hold his hand at the close of the movie. She understands that her ‘powers’ decrease her freedom.
And the climax with Wolverine killing Dr Jean ‘because I love you’ to save her from the demon Felix within while being fleetingly upset left me wondering if I’m supposed to conclude that mercy killing is good or that basically good people make poor choices, or if mutation (and whatever it stands for) drives you a little bit bonkers or if being sidelined by society is preferable to being ‘normal’ and ordinary… But then it’s further complicated by the Felix character, able to withstand 2000 guns firing at her at once, but who gives way to wobble-lipped Jean, who welcomes the simple stabbing from Beardweird Scissorhands, which despatches her soul to heaven or something. I’m lost! Quite lost!
One gets the feeling this is the final film in this strand, as by the end the following have been wasted (many of them literally): Prof X (Jean-Luc on wheels), Jean Grey (the pneumatic Famke Jannsen), and Cyclops (who cares?).
Plus the gorgeous Mystique (Rebecca Romijn), who one might describe as a clothes horse if only she ever wore any, and the pouting skunk-haired Rogue are both rendered power-free, as is Magneto (McKellen). Or is he?
Spectacular, but like Matrix 3 and Star Wars Revenue of the Sixth, that’s all.