Sacha Howells May 14, 2009
X-Men Origins: Wolverine had a strong opening weekend, and the audience reaction was more or less favorable. Hugh Jackman is reliable as always, there are some decent effects, Liev Schreiber‘s good at playing crazy, and there’s so much Australian beef it’s like an Outback Steakhouse. And believe it or not, the movie was a learning experience. Just not in the way Marvel might have hoped.
1. The U.S. Military Thinks Canada Is a State
Logan and his half-brother Creed, who’ve served on every American battlefield since the Civil War, survive execution by firing squad in Vietnam, which brings them to the attention of the smarmy Major Stryker. When he shows up to enlist them for his superhuman army, he asks, “How would you like to really serve your country?” Of course, as anyone who’s read the comics — or saw the first five minutes of the movie — knows, they’re Canadian.
2. Nine Years and Four Movies Later, the CGI Claws Still Look Awful
It’s been a problem since the first X-Men: Wolvie’s claws just don’t look good. They don’t bend like metal, they don’t reflect like metal, the T-1000 from Terminator 2 looked better, and that was in 1991. And it begs the question, why use CG at all? There are perfectly good physical effects guys out there; why not bash up a few sets of real claws? The whole idea is supposed to be to make things look good. If spilling red corn syrup on somebody’s shirt makes better blood than your bank of supercomputers can cook up, go with the corn syrup.
3. Mike Myers and Eddie Murphy Aren’t the Only People Left Who Still Think Fat Suits Are Hi-Larious
Come on. I was on board for most of the silliness, it’s a comic book movie, fine. But when Logan tracks down Fred Dukes after six years to find that the immovable strong man has put on hundreds of pounds, the fat jokes and ridiculous rolls of lard are like the horror of Fat Bastard all over again. (I know, he’s going to end up as the supervillain the Blob. But still.)
4. Yelling “AAAAAAAAGH!” Loses Its Impact After Around Four Times
Hugh Jackman took a regrettable page from the Shatner School of Acting on this one, looking at the sky, flexing, and screaming his lungs out way too often. By the end of the movie, all his vein-popping angst yell got was a round of snickering, not exactly the impact they were going for. (And, as I’ve learned the hard way, even a good hero scream suffers from the law of diminishing returns. I let out a decent one at the ATM the other day when they were out of envelopes, and no one even blinked.)
5. Secret Black Ops Bases Don’t Have Very Good Locks
Wolverine sneaks into Stryker’s fancy-pants human weapon research compound by flicking a claw in the door latch, like a college kid using a credit card to get into his dorm room. These people are the government. They run through black helicopters like Kleenex, and obviously have an unlimited budget for silly tattoos and mouth surgery. And they didn’t even spring for one of those door bars they have in motels? (Even if you think Wolverine’s claw cut through the steel of a bolt they never showed, these guys have cages full of superhumans lying around. Maybe an alarm? At least some tin cans hanging over the door?)
Categories: No CategoriesTags: Hugh jackman, Liev schreiber, Wolverine