I must admit, the trailers didn't have me convinced - and after the sour taste 'Jack the Giant Slayer' left in my mouth, I was sceptic. I really dug Matthew Vaughn's approach with 'First Class' (who had a tough task rebooting the franchise after the lacklustre 'Last Stand' and the generic, dull 'X-Men Origins: Wolverine') and I wouldn't have minded him returning at all. But as it turns out, Bryan Singer (yes, I dare speak his name) still has a few tricks up his sleeve. For its sheer scale and epic storytelling alone, 'Days of Future Past' is fantastic.
It's a shame there's so much controversy surrounding this film, but I guess whoever chooses to deprive himself willingly of such a pleasure must be fully aware that he does so at his own expense. Because this is the kind of film that made me fall in love with movies in the first place.
Yet (despite my 10-star review), it's not perfect. And it's not 'The Usual Suspects' with mutants - how could it be; this is simply not that kind of film. But I have to say that pretty much my only gripe with this movie is that it has too many characters and that some of them don't get enough screen time (or actually, there's not too many characters: there's just too many great actors playing those characters – but then again, that's half of the fun). Of all the X-men films, this has the most complex plot – and also the most interesting. Different time-lines are tricky to do and can be rather hard to follow, but thanks to a (very!) clever script with a great part for Logan, we never get lost. And that's the best news: sorely missed in the last instalment (except for a hilarious cameo), the franchise has Hugh Jackman back. And of him at least we do get to see a lot, since he really leads us through this film (giving his best Wolverine performance yet along the way). If Logan can be called the heart of the X-men, then Charles Xavier must be the mind while Magneto and Mystique provide the - slightly twisted - soul, and seeing them all together again brought a broad, stupid grin to my face (which only got broader whenever Quicksilver appeared on screen - for reasons you will have to find out for yourselves).
What really sets the X-men films apart from the ever more derivative comic-book adaptations – at least as far as I'm concerned – is that I always genuinely cared for the characters, and 'Days of Future Past' is no exception. I love loud, spectacular action movies as much as the next guy, but if I don't get to care for the protagonists – what's the point? The reason I gave this 10 stars, and what is so exceptional these days, is that what we get here is a complex, smart Fantasy/Sci-Fi thrill-ride that respects its origins as much as it embraces the future, while never - ever - forgetting that its first job is to entertain the audience. For finding that perfect, rare balance between character-driven human drama and no-holds-barred popcorn action spectacle, 'Days of Future Past' deserves my 10-star rating (which is a first for me: I've never given 10-stars to a comic-book movie).
So my verdict: If you like to get your minds blown by something with true heart and soul, this massive 'mutant' of a film is upon you, and all you have to do is give in to the X-citement. Enjoy the ride.
Favorite Films: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls054200841/