Movie Review: X-Men Origins: Wolverine

X-Men Origins: Wolverine
3 Lloyds – Not Family-Friendly
PG-13 for intense sequences of action and violence,
and some partial nudity.
Running Time: 1 hour 47 minutes

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How it all began…

This new Wolverine flick uses several resources, including Marvel Comics lore, along with the more recent Weapon X graphic novels by Frank Miller. X-Men Origins mixes action with an origin story about how Logan emerged from a barbaric experiment as an indestructible mutant with retractable razor-sharp claws.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine explores the wild past of Logan. We discover his epically violent and romantic past. The movie also reveals his complex relationship with Victor Creed, and of course, the ominous Weapon X program. Along the way Wolverine encounters many mutants. Some are new, others are familiar. Then, sprinkled along the way, some surprise appearances by several legends from the X-Men universe show up too.

Viewer Discretion Is Strongly Advised

Right out of the gate I have to say this movie is far from family-friendly. While the previous X-Men movies were violent, X-Men Origins: Wolverine is over-the-top-violent. The MPAA warning says the movie contains intense sequences of action and violence. The word intense puts it mildly. While there’s no gushing blood all over the place, there’s lots and lots of graphic violence. There’s simply too much violence to carry a PG-13 rating. Parents, be forewarned, X-Men Origins: Wolverine is not your comic book tame superhero type flick. This really falls into the category of a violent graphic novel type movie.

I’m not saying this simply because I’m against the movie.
No, I’m saying this from a parental standpoint.

Keep in mind, when we screen movies, we screen them with audiences. During the showing we attended there were parents with kids under the age of 13. They were visibly, and audibly, scared through the movie. Remember, up until the approximate age of 13, kids have a hard time distinguishing between fantasy and reality. As a result, X-Men Origins is simply not a movie for the young. Wolverine is best suited for a 16 and up age group.

After giving the above disclaimer…
What was the movie like?

If you’re looking for action and special effects, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, will not disappoint you. This is a wild ride of special effects, and eye-candy abounds! However, as another movie critic friend of mine always says…

Special effects alone, do not a movie make.

In a nutshell, X-Men Origins: Wolverine is a special effects bonanza, strung together with boring parts in-between. Clocking in at close to two hours, I must admit I looked at my watch numerous times. At one point Sandra asked me what was going on. I responded simply saying – “I’m bored.” – There’s no middle ground in this movie. It’s either in your face action and special effects – or – Boring lack-luster, slow-moving dialogue scenes. I understand they’re trying to lay in the ground work for the origins of Wolverine. I get that. However, apparently all the writers had was a bare bones script idea of cool special effects. Then they had to figure out how to stretch the special effects out into a movie. This movie could easily have been an hour and a half, or less. The drawn out slow scenes could have been cut in half and the groundwork for Wolverine’s origins would still have remained intact.

That being said, X-Men Origins: Wolverine is not a total loss.
After all, we are giving it a 3 out of 5 Lloyd rating.

Hugh Jackman is brilliant. He’s an incredible actor, and an incredibly versatile actor at that. There really appears to be no role he can’t play. He’s a great bad guy, he’s a great good guy. He can even pull a terrible movie like the 2006 flick The Fountain out of the trash can and do well with that! If it weren’t for Jackman, Wolverine would probably be a total loss. Aside from Jackman, Liev Schreiber plays a wonderful bad guy with his Sabretooth character. Not only is a he a good bad guy, but he’s a crucial part of the plot too. Many other characters come and gone throughout X-Men Origins, but Jackman and Schreiber really are the glue which holds a somewhat tattered and jumbled script together.

As for surprises, there are plenty when it comes to character development. Along the way many pieces fall into place in this X-Men franchise prequel. Watch very closely as familiar characters and familiar faces pop up from time to time too. It’s also very obvious that the people behind the whole franchise are looking to re-launch the blockbuster hit series. X-Men Origins: Wolverine clearly sets the stage for more sequels to come in the days ahead.

As for the ending – make sure you don’t leave too early!

There are some surprise endings tossed in during the closing credits. When the closing credits start to roll, stay seated as another scene quickly pops up on the screen. Then, when that scene is completed, don’t leave yet! Sit through the entire credits, and I mean the entire credits. If you leave before the final credit rolls, you will indeed miss some important pieces of the movie.

Enjoy the show!
Dr. Rus

About the Author

Dr. Rus has 30+ years experience in the field of communication. He takes this experience, and his passion to encourage others to positively effect their environment, when providing insight and movie reviews.