FFlashback: X-Men (2000)

With X-Men: Apocalypse shortly arriving in cinemas, we’re looking back at the franchise. First up, here’s the original…

 

The One Where: In a world where superhumans are persecuted, outcasts Wolverine and Rogue join the X-Men – just as Magneto and his evil Brotherhood plan to turn the whole of humankind into mutants.

Star Turns: Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen are the perfect choices for Professor X and Magneto, bringing Shakespearean gravitas to their parts.  Their presence ensured that audiences of the time – who were unused to more serious comic book films – bought the drama. Oh, and that guy who plays the one with the claws? He’s pretty good too. He’s definitely going places…

Weak Links: With so many characters running around, some were always going to draw the short straw. Magneto’s lackeys Toad and Sabretooth don’t have the personality of Mystique and, on the good side, Halle Berry’s Storm is unfortunately bland – despite having one of the coolest powers. And poor Cyclops. Instead of team leader, he ends up playing third wheel to Logan and Jean.

Verdict: X-Men deserves to be remembered as the first proper modern superhero film, as it successfully manages to – largely – faithfully adapt the comics while still playing it straight (as opposed to Batman and Robin‘s campy approach). Looking back now, though, it is oddly short for a comic book movie and feels like an extended pilot for a TV show rather than a film in its own right. Not to worry though, things would only improve for the sequel…

X-Tra Fact: Joss Whedon, a massive X-Men fan, did some uncredited work on the script. Apparently, he wrote the infamous “what happens to a toad when it is struck by lightning” line. Needless to say, he isn’t a fan of Halle Berry’s delivery.

On the other hand, he also wrote this scene, which is perhaps the funniest moment in the film:

 

What do you think of the first X-Men film? 

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