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May 3, 2003


X-Men 2: We saw it,

X-Men 2: We saw it, we loved it. First impressions:

  • The script had a lot more depth than the first movie. Characters and themes are much more fully developed. There are a lot of significant characters, and they're all given room to breathe. The supporting roles from the first one are spruced up and fleshed out, and it pays off, because you're able to emotionally connect with everyone in a way you couldn't last time. Wolverine is still the focus, but the others are given a lot to do (except Cyclops).
  • The treatment of Jean Grey (Famke Janssen) is so perfect. They pick up all the subtleties of her character, and start hinting at all the amazing stuff comic book fans will remember from the days leading up to Dark Phoenix.
  • After the fantastic and scary opening sequence, Alan Cumming as Nightcrawler was a lot hammier than either of us expected. He's got this Colonel Klink accent, and everything he says is -- to use Amy's word -- so "earnest", it's comic. He ends up being like the Jar Jar Binks of this movie, except not annoying.
  • There are a couple of moments that are supposed to be serious and emotional that play kind of funny. One involves Nightcrawler praying, and another is Cyclops talking to someone else through Xavier, towards the end of the film.
  • Cyclops over-acts a little in his later scenes.
  • The effects are so good -- especially the Nightcrawler teleport -- you don't even notice them, for the most part. There is a scene involving airplanes that could have been done better, but is still good.
  • Brian Cox plays the main bad guy in this one, and even manages a Southern accent. His acolyte is a cross between Lucy Liu and Wolverine ("Lady Deathstrike", in the comics) who is scary and mute.
  • Amy pointed out a nod to Silence of the Lambs that is completely unsubtle, but I still didn't notice it. It involves a security guard delivering a meal to Magneto in his plastic prison.
  • The movie plays up the racist overtones of human attitudes about "the mutant problem", but not too much. Some discussions also reminded me of certain attitudes towards Arab-Americans these days.
  • Overall, this movie features even greater moral ambiguity than the last one, which lends it an unusual amount of subtlety and nuance for a superhero movie. In fact, it has more character and thematic nuance than most straight dramas.
All in all, I think you can say that X2 is a better movie than X1. I was thinking that's interesting, because I think Superman 2 and Batman 2 are both better than their predecessors.

So that's it. Go see it.

posted by adm at 12:32 AM | #


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