Since the first X-Men film 17 years ago (17!), I’ve been a huge fan of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine. And it’s not just me, as his popularity with the fans have seen Jackman appear in 9 different films across the X-Men universe. Now as Jackman prepares to hang up his claws we are promised a Wolverine solo movie that will put the others to shame. But can Jackman’s Wolverine end on a high?
It’s 2029, most of the X-Men are dead and no new mutants are being born. Wolverine spends his days drinking and working as a limo driver looking after a senile Professor X (Patrick Stewart). When he’s forced to take care of a young girl named Laura (Dafne Keen), who’s being chased by bad guys, Logan is forced into one last adventure.
Have you ever seen Wolverine in a movie think ‘what I really want to see is him older, drunker and really, really violent’. Then you’re in luck as Logan is the film for you! From the start this is a very different Wolverine movie to what we’ve seen before, more brutal, more sombre and surprisingly with a heavy emotional weight. Oddly enough this is one trilogy that does the opposite from what most movie trilogies achieve, in that they get better with each film. Not only that it’s one of the best comic adaptation and not just for an X Men movie. It may be because Director James Mangold takes inspiration not just from the Old Man Logan comic but also from Westerns, Shane in particular being a huge influence while there’s also hints of Children of Men and even Mad Max. It’s as far away from the quips and yellow spandex universe as you can get. In this near future we get to see Logan as we haven’t seen him before and it really allows Jackman to show his acting chops and emote in a way we haven’t witnessed him do in this franchise.
As for the supporting cast there’s no weak link. Teaming Logan with a kid could have been a disaster, instead Dafne Keen is a revelation. This girl will be one to watch. Then there’s Patrick Stewart in what is rumoured to be his last turn as Professor X. It’s great to see different sides to his character then what we’ve seen in previous films. This Professor X is much more frail but still potentially as powerful as before. If this is his last time as Charles Xavier he ends it with the gravitas he deserves.
If the film has one flaw it’s that at 2 and a half hours it does feel long. In the middle stretch I really started to notice it. However for the majority of it’s running time there’s enough to keep you glued to the screen to make you forget how long you’ve been sat there. I must admit I had a little tear in my eye as the film came to a close.
Rating 4.5/5 – a beautiful swan song for Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine