Review: Days of Future Past
Let’s be honest, if there’s one thing to be said about Hollywood these days, it’s that they’re great at taking popular stories and then butchering them for the silver screen – The X-Men franchise has been no exception. But what happens when this franchise comes up with a ploy – let’s call it Days of Future Past – to try and use one of X-Men’s most famous stories to try and fix all the plot holes, errors, and inconsistencies of the previous 6 films? They create more plot holes, errors, and inconsistencies!
Readers, ye be warned! Spoilers ahead!
It’s dark. It’s serious. It’s clever….It’s disappointing.
X-Men: Days of Future Past takes place – you’ve guessed it – not only in the not so distant future of the first X-Men trilogy, but also a decade after X-Men: First Class. The characters from the original X-Men film trilogy are back and teaming up with their younger selves to fight a war both in past and present. The film takes the basic premise from the popular comic story of the same name – barely. Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) is sent back in time by Kitty Pryde (Ellen Page) to stop a dangerous chain of events that leads to the devastating future of the mutant-destroying Sentinels created by Doctor Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage). Right from the get go director Bryan Singer starts the film with a very exciting scene depicting just how dangerous these Sentinels are. We see some new faces amongst the familiar as Blink, Warpath, and Bishop join Storm and Bobby Drake as they fight to survive against these weapons designed from Mystique’s DNA to hunt and destroy mutants. The action packed sequence gives the film a great start, but right away one of the biggest continuity errors jumps across the screen: Professor X (Patrick Stewart) is alive.
Remember when Jean Grey vaporized him in X3? Yeah, me too. And although he was able to preserve his consciousness in a comatose patient, something tells me his telekinesis isn’t quite so powerful enough as to bring his body back to life.
But the problems don’t end there. It seems the writers couldn’t even get the simplest of continuity strings correct – they couldn’t even quote their own prequel correctly when Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) quite bluntly tells Logan to “F*ck off.” And let’s not begin the discussion on why Wolverine suddenly has adamantium claws again in the future sequences with no explanation whatsoever.
The main arc of Days of Future Past focuses on stopping Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence) from murdering Doctor Trask. In the Future X-Men’s past, Mystique was caught, and her DNA was used to program the Sentinels to be able to find and fight the mutants using their own abilities. One would think that Magneto (Michael Fassbender) would be behind this as well, however it appears that he has spent the last decade buried in prison – thus negating any possibility of Mystique and Magneto having maintained a long, close relationship with each other as previously mentioned not only by Professor X in Days of Future Past, but the original trilogy as well.
When it comes to CGI, the Days of Future Past producers spent their budget well. The design of the Sentinels is outright scary it’s so good. Piled on with Magneto quarantining President Nixon and his cabinet by ripping out a baseball field and dropping it around the Pentagon, it seemed the producers were willing to push every penny towards making this film as visually appealing as possible. Too bad they couldn’t afford better writers…
All in all, even though the film does some good things for the franchise – such as cleaning up the mess that was X3 – the holes are quite gaping. Sure, we could get into a Looper-esque discussion on the physics and possibilities of time travel and alternate dimensions that would explain and solve all these continuity errors, but why do that when the X-Men writers could just make a new film erasing and explaining it all over again?
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