Sunday, May 22, 2016

Movie Review … X-Men: Apocalypse

This year has seen an abundance of superhero films.  That may be cause for celebration for fans, but for others it might represent a glut.  ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ is a case in point.  Whilst up to the technical and performance standards of previous entries, the sixth movie in the X-Men series has a generic, tired feel to it.  There’s a sense of going through the heroic motions than offering anything fresh.  Familiarity perhaps breeds contempt with the overdose of Marvel/DC comic book productions continuing unabated.

When the first and most powerful mutant Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac) awakens from an endless slumber, he sets out to re-create earth.  With the help of rogue mutant Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Apocalypse wants the planet to do his bidding.  In his way are Professor Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and his fellow mutant pupils who join forces to eradicate this new evil.  The battle for Earth’s future reaches a crescendo where the survival of every participant isn’t guaranteed.

Directing his fourth X-Men film, Bryan Singer should know what makes an X-Men story work.  ‘Apocalypse’ mostly works due to his keen eye for spectacular action and dazzling visuals.  Aided by the usual solid efforts of actors Fassbender, McAvoy and cast, the stage is set for a diverting entry.  Letting it down is the script’s lack of energetic zest.  It is easy feeling as if you’ve seen everything before with not much new added to the mythos.

That isn’t to say ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ is a dull affair because it isn’t.  There is more humour in the usually dour X-Men world this time around, making the heroically-gifted characters feel more human.  The dearth of characters is sometimes too much as like most recent block-busters ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ crams in as many as possible. This has the effect of drawing you away too much from the more interesting mind games between the main characters.  What’s on offer is good but less can be so much more in such an effects-heavy movie.

‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ delivers tons of noise and explosions to belt eardrums.  Story-wise it isn’t as strong as previous instalments.  It’s better than some superhero spectacles although it may be wise to give this bunch of heroes a rest before their welcome is over-stayed.

Movie Review Rating out of 10:  6

Movie Review by Patrick Moore

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Patrick Moore's Movie Review is an alternative look at movie releases in Australia.