CinemaDave (cinemadave) wrote,

2000 Review of "X Men"

When I was in primary school, my parents did something really cool for me, their son in third in grade who was three reading levels behind the rest of the class. They let me stay up late during a school night to watch “the Alamo” starring John Wayne.

Shortly thereafter I was consuming biographies and books on American history, which was a far cry from reading about the boring adventures of Dick, Jane and Spot. The following summer I discovered my brother's Superman and Batman comic book collection and I started to use words like “metamorphosis” in fourth grade. Being a D.C. Comics fundamentalist, I could never understand the appeal of mutant super he ores of the 1970's. but after seeing “X-Men” my views have changed.

Tolerance is the key theme of “X men.” To prove the seriousness of this point, the film opens with people being herded into a concentration camp. When a mother and child become separated and supernatural events begin. That explosive event is our introduction to the younger version of the two main antagonists, Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and Magneto (Ian McKellen).

Flash forward to the not to distant future. We are introduced to the students of the Xavier School of gifted Youngsters,. New student Rouge (Anna Paquin) has a problem whenever she kisses boys. Rogue's future soulmate is Logan (Hugh Jackman), a side burned, bearded war machine. These two form the core of a beauty and the Beast relationship. Hugh Jackman is given romantic leading man status, thanks to director Bryan Singer, who consistently frames Jackson with movie allusions from the past.

Their teachers include Storm (Halle Berry), who has the ability to make it rain, and cyclops (James Marsden), who can shoot laser beams out of his forehead. The mutants of the Xavier School are besieged by the dogmatic congressman (Bruce Davidson) who proposes a Mutant Registration Law.

Little do the good guys know, the congressman is being duped by Magneto and his band of evil henchmen. So stoically enhancing as Darth Maul in “The Phantom Menace,” Ray Park portrays the annoying Toad, complete with an elongated 20-foot tongue. A lot of attention has been paid to the painted on clothes of super model Rebecca Romijn-Stamos as the changeling, Mystique. Her character, blue skinned with yellow scales, does mean things with her bare blue feet.

If the characters are complicated, fortunately the plot is simple. To avenge the intolerance he has endured by humans, Magneto seeks world domination. The tolerance theme is
enhanced by the symbolical showdown occurring over Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty.

Planned as a trilogy, the ending of “X-Men” tends towards overkill. There is no tension or excitement watching six superpowered mutants pummel each other, knowing that they will be back for “X-Men Part Two.” However, any movie that promotes tolerance without being preachy deserves a feature in its cap.

“Like ”The Alamo,“ ”X-Men“ is not a perfect motion picture; however, imperfection can sometimes be more inspiring than
so-called perfection.
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