June 4th, 2011

comics

X-Men: First Class - non-spoilery review

Not without its flaws, but they're minor. IMHO, they done good. I'm curious now whether they'll continue in this retro vein -- perhaps touch on the late 60s, mid-70s (no Krakoa, please!), later Claremont era? I think it'll probably depend on how this does, and probably Captain America (also a period piece) as well.

The main thing for me, I think, is that relationships and characters are established well, then stuff starts happening to test and reconfigure them into their more familiar forms. Mystique in particular surprised me by making good sense in how they conceived her. A lot still needs to happen to her for her to become the merciless ball of spite we met in the previous movies, but there's plenty of time for that.

Speaking of the previous movies, this one exists in an odd grey area between prequel and reboot. I'm given to understand that it's intended as the latter, at least mostly, but in both style and story it still dovetails with the existing material. For the most part, anyway, the biggest exception being that Moira can't be Rose Byrne in 1962 and Olivia Williams in 2006, at least not without inventing way more continuity gymnastics than is even remotely advisable.

Of course, Rose Byrne is also essentially playing an original character (an American CIA agent) with Moira's name, so that's kind of irrelevant anyway. brainiacfive and I have decided that naming said original character Gabrielle Haller would have made slightly more sense, mostly due to her being present and interacting with both Xavier and Magneto early in their friendship. But ultimately it doesn't really matter.

Memo to director: Decide what accent you want Fassbender to do before you start filming. (He suddenly flips from RP to Irish-actor-possibly-trying-to-sound-American at the climax of the action, and stays there. My guess is that those sequences were filmed first. In any event, it's odd.)

All in all, though, they done good, and I hope it does well.