Although “X-Men: Apocalypse” is the 9th installment of the “X-Men” franchise, it is considered as the 3rd film in the series’ prequel line-up after “X-Men: First Class” (2011) and “X-Men: Days Of Future Past”. The movie has been plagued with mixed reviews even before its official release. Many critics think that it’s overstuffed with superheroes that are “all over the place” while others think that it’s opening doors for more sequels, what with the introduction of the young cast members.
That having said, people will always have clashing viewpoints about movies because to each his or her own. To us, at least, “X-Men: Apocalypse” has an entertaining plot, but the story lacks excitement.
The movie starts off with explaining how Apocalypse, aka En Sabah Nur (played by Oscar Isaac) was trapped under the grounds of Egypt for centuries. He awakens in 1983, 10 years after the events of “Days Of Future Past”, and realises that the world he once ruled has been taken over by “the weak” (non-mutants).
To create a new world, he has to destroy mankind once again. As the fate of the Earth hangs in the balance, Raven (played by Jennifer Lawrence) with the help of Professor X (played by James McAvoy) must lead a team of young X-Men to stop their greatest nemesis and save mankind from complete destruction.
The structure of the film’s first act is very similar to director Bryan Singer’s first “X-Men” movie as it dedicates most of its time explaining – their origins, how they joined the X-Men/Apocalypse, and their powers. For the first hour so, we get to see younger versions of Storm (played by Alexandra Shipp), Nightcrawler (played by Kodi Smit-McPhee), Cyclops (played by Tye Sheridan), Jean Grey (played by Sophie Turner), as well as newcomers Archangel aka Angel (played by Ben Hardy), and Psylocke (played by Olivia Munn).
Although we enjoyed seeing Raven/Mystique save Nightcrawler from a fighting cage (in the comics, Mystique is Nightcrawler’s mother) and Jean Grey meeting Cyclops for the first time in mutant school, the bad guys (the Four Horsemen) don’t actually get a lot of screen time. They’re like action figures, with no character development or substantial dialogue whatsoever throughout the film.
Well, save for Erik/Magneto (played by Michael Fassbender), of course.
Like any other superhero movie you’ve seen this year such as “Captain America: Civil War” and “Batman V Superman: Dawn Of Justice”, “Apocalypse” also has the ultimate (possibly our favourite) bromance pair – Professor X and Magneto.
These 2 are polar opposites: Xavier is a happy and revitalised man running a school of young hopeful mutants while Magneto is convinced that the world is going against him, especially when he has to witness the death of his beloved wife and daughter.
Staying true to the tradition of an “X-Men” movie being centred on the relationship between Professor X and Magneto, Bryan Singer successfully brought the 2 characters together again in “X-Men: Apocalypse” despite their differences.
Thankfully, the film has a good amount of humour, largely thanks to the super fast mutant, Quicksilver (played by Evan Peters). Once again, the silver-haired speedster saved the day in a fun and musical way. We also get to see Professor X go gaga over agent Moira Mactaggert (played by Rose Byrne) for the first time in 20 years after he erased her memories in “X-Men: First Class”.
Another character that deserves a mention is Wolverine (played by Hugh Jackman). Now, you might question, “Why would he be in this movie when ‘Wolverine 3’ will be released next year?” In his defense, he has appeared in every “X-Men” movie, so it only made sense for him to appear in this one too. Plus, the movie wouldn’t be complete without him. You’ll know what we mean once you see the post credits.
Not every character will fare as well. Mystique’s sombre and grim “freedom fighter” act totally killed her cool and ballsy attitude from “X-Men: First Class”. Which is a shame because we were hoping to see more fire and energy from her.
Lastly, let’s talk about the big battle scene between the budding X-Men and the Four Horsemen at the end. Apocalypse orders Magneto to destroy the world by using his powers to summon metal from belowground and then, it’s absolute chaos.
“Apocalypse” means the end of world, yet we see no casualties, no refugees, and not one non-mutant person running for their lives. Where’s the devastation?
The fight scene was pretty decent but it wasn’t as impressive and mature as “Captain America: Civil War” as it featured a bunch of super humans running around and trying to survive because these newcomers have zero experience in fighting. It seemed as though they went to battle without a proper strategy. Rookie mistake, much?
All in all, “X-Men: Apocalypse” was entertaining in the mindless sense. However, for a superhero movie, it still needs some shaping up. But don’t just take it from us, watch it and judge for yourselves. Oh, and please make it a point to stay till the end for the post credit scene. Don’t say we didn’t share ;)
We’ll leave you now with the final “X-Men: Apocalypse” trailer. Enjoy:
“X-Men: Apocalypse” is slated for release in local cinemas on 19th May 2016.