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Published on May 21st, 2016 | by Ben Kohler

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‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ Review

Note: the opinions in this piece are the author’s own and do not represent the Tertangala or the University of Wollongong.

Note: spoilers. Kinda.

Rating: 8/10

X-Men: Apocalypse, directed by Bryan Singer, is the follow up to 2014’s X-Men: Days of Future Past and while it does not quite live up to the 2014 film it is still good and worth a watch.

Apocalypse was the first mutant born thousands of years ago and was worshipped in Ancient Egypt as a god. He is betrayed but then awakens in 1983 in a world where people in general have not so much accepted mutants but tolerate them.

Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters is up and running, Magneto left for Poland after the events of Days of Future Past and mutants the world over see Mystique as a hero of mutant kind. Apocalypse however, seeks to essentially destroy the world and build a new one ruled by (spoilers) him!

Most of the reviews for this film have been either mixed or negative so I didn’t walk into the cinema expecting a great deal. The first 20 minutes or so were a little scattered but I was still thinking that it was better than people were saying. But after that the film really started to pick up.

There are some issues, however. The first is that the Apocalypse storyline is the major X-Men story and the film just does not quite live up to it. With Apocalypse himself, his motivations are a little unclear at first and while he didn’t quite live up to the comic book representation, he is still very powerful and not someone to take lightly.

Apocalypse as he appears in the comics. Image via slashfilm.com

Apocalypse as he appears in the comics. Image via slashfilm.com

The other key issue with the film is that some of the characters could have been used a lot more. Jubilee for instance is a classic character I was really looking forward to seeing but disappointingly had a lack of screen time. Other than Jubilee there was Psylocke, who got plenty of screen time but just was not written well enough. Though Olivia Munn did a good job with what she had. Wolverine was also in there though and that was one of the best parts of the film. It felt a bit shoe-horned in there but it was still some of the best Wolverine we’ve ever gotten and the filmmakers did manage to find a way to make it actually make sense that he would show up. What made it so good was that fact that he was killing people and that the best word to describe it would be either “slaughter” or “massacre”. It really made me think “This is the Wolverine that I know and love from the comics!”

As per usual, another one of the best things about the film was Magneto. Magneto’s arc is heavily emotional and much of it is to do with everything going on between him and Xavier. Magneto’s being convinced that he is not a good guy and Xavier’s assertion that there is much more to him than he thinks and that there is more good in him than he gives himself credit for is a heavy element not just in Magneto’s arc but in the story overall and it is very effective. I even got choked up a couple of times!

All in all, while it has some issues and does not quite live up to the greatness of the comic books it is based on and is not as good as some other recent Marvel films, X-Men: Apocalypse is still a good film that I enjoyed quite a lot. It is definitely worth a watch.

Edit 21/5/16 – feature image changed

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Ben Kohler



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