The 2009 summer movie season has arrived with the releases of “X-Men Origins: Wolverine”, which once again stars Hugh Jackman in the role of the razor clawed Wolverine.
The film follows the characters origins in the mid 1800’s and how circumstances forced a young Logan to leave his home and spend the years hiding who he was.
With the only link to his past, a fellow mutant named Victor (Liev Schrieber), Logan and Victor ride out the years side by side taking part in wars ranging from The Civil War to Vietnam all the while trying as best as they can to hide their true nature.
When Victor starts to enjoy killing too much, and Logan tries to intercede, the duo find themselves the subject of unwanted attention in the guise of an officer named William Styker (William Houston), who recruits the duo to be part of a special team.
Victor and Logan find themselves part of a team of special powered operatives which includes the marksman Agent Zero (Daniel Henney), the Blade twirling Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds), The Blob (Kevin Durand), Bolt (Dominic Monaghan), and more. When an operation goes too far, Logan turns his back on the team for a peaceful life as a lumberjack and lives for years in peace with a woman named Kayla (Lynn Collins) very much in love.
Try as Logan may to escape his past, he is unable to when Stryker arrives and tells him that someone is hunting down the former team. Logan ignores the warning and is devastated when Victor is revealed to be behind the killings and strikes a devastating blow to Logan.
With nowhere to go, Logan agrees to Stryker’s plan and undergoes an experiment which infuses his body with the indestructible Adamantium but soon finds himself again on the run when he is betrayed and learns the true nature of Stryker’s plans.
In a race against time, Logan must find the mysterious Island where Stryker has captured several mutants for his experiments and exact his revenge.
The new film was plagued by rumors of issues, which were heightened by reported reshoots and script changes, but thankfully manages to pull together to be an enjoyable summer film. Some may say the film took a bit to get up to the action sequences, but thanks to the great play between Jackman and Schrieber, the film keeps your attention.
There are some solid action sequences in the film and Jackman does not disappoint as we gain insights into the mercurial nature of Wolverine, and how various aspects of his character such as his memory loss came to be.
I would have liked to have seen more action in the film as the main action scenes were a bit to restrained and infrequent for my liking. When I go to a summer movie, I expect to be blown away by the action, and with this one, I had a sense of being underwhelmed by the films action sequences, even the climactic battle.
This is not to say the film is bad, simply that it lacks the needed gear to shift the film into overdrive. I did enjoy Jackman’s performance and it was great seeing the new characters in the film especially Gambit. Fans with sharp eyes will note many characters pop up in cameos and there are some real surprise visits in the film. In the end, “X-Men Origins: Wolverine” is better than the last X-Men film and should prove enough life in the series for future projects.
3.5 stars out of 5