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X-Men Origins: Wolverine

X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Genders: Adventure, Action, Thriller, Sci-Fi

Director: Gavin Hood

Writer: David Benioff, Skip Woods

Actors: Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Ryan Reynolds, Danny Huston

Year: 2009
Run time: 1h 47min
IMDB score: 6.7
Updated: one year ago

Movie infomation

Movie name: X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Genders: Adventure, Action, Thriller, Sci-Fi

Imdb Score: 6.7

Runtime: 1h 47min

Released: 01 May 2009

Director: Gavin Hood

Writer: David Benioff, Skip Woods

Actors: Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Ryan Reynolds, Danny Huston

Box Office: $179.7M

Company: 20th Century Fox

OfficialWebsite

Imdb Link

X-Men Origins: Wolverine Available Subtitles

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Trailer


Review

My expectations were too high

4/10 All of the X-Men movies were great. And I mean all of them, including the long hated X-Men 3. They had solid characters (Magneto and Xavier were the best ones, in my opinion), and a good story arch.

I was all excited when I heard this movie was on production, and my expectations grew bigger and bigger until I saw the movie. I was so disappointed.

Hugh Jackman is not a bad actor (his best movie is The Fountain, although you won't hear about this movie when they talk about the actor), and his acting is not what screws the movie up.

The whole film is plagued with lots of meaningless characters that add nothing to the plot (like Blob or Gambit), which were tossed there to make fans believe that the film makers had read the original comics.

I am a fan of XMen, I have read many, many of their stories and this movie respected none of them. None. Not even the continuity. It doesn't respect Weapon X project, or the relationship between Wolverine and Sabretooth, or Emma Frost, the motivations for wolverine are plain stupid and seen in millions of movies: Revenge for the death of a loved one.

Oh. What I was expecting the whole darn movie was a Berseker moment for Wolverine similar to the one he has in X2 in the school when Stryker men come in and he alone decimates the enemy forces, but hey, this is Fox, this a family flick and you will not see explicit violence from the most violent and gruesome Marvel hero.

Besides, I had a feeling of constant deja vu with this movie because Wolverine's Origins are already explained in X2, we already know how he got his adamantium skeleton so it kind of does not make sense to make a movie of something we already know.

I personally believe that wolverine is one of those few characters that does not need a solid back-story because mystery is the nature of the character. Do we really want to know how the Joker got his scars?

4 years ago

Much better than the reviews, actions packed FUN

8/10 Forget the reviews that focus on dialogue (it's a comic book character, of course it's cliched) or other types of thing you may look for in movies like a Room With A View. In this movie you want to see cool action, cool use of superpowers, great fights with CGI that is not obvious and some tension about what happens next. This movie has it all. Academy awards? No. Amazing plot? No, but enough to keep it very interesting, with answers like where Adamantium comes from, Sabretooth and Wolverine relationship, introduction of Deadpool, early view of Cyclops, and much more that keeps the movie going along just fine. This is a solid action film, better than most.

4 years ago

"Wolverine" 's journey is more about the visuals than the character

6/10 The superhero genre reached a higher echelon in 2008 with "Iron Man" and "The Dark Knight," and considering the success of 2/3 of the X-Men franchise so far, "X-Men Origins: Wolverine" can certainly be held to those standards, especially a movie whose title alone suggests getting right down to its hero's adamantium core.

But "Wolverine" plays more like a spin-off, defining "origins" as the back story and not the psychological workings of the character. It's weak on themes, but loaded on more new mutants with new powers, explosions and plenty of subplots. Basically, it fails where "X-Men 3" did, trying to do too much at once, rushing the plot along and sacrificing the deeper reason audiences are drawn to Hugh Jackman's character other than he's cool and has a crude, sarcastic sense of humor. However, it succeeds much of the same way X3 did and beyond: more explosive action and creative use of an immense visual effects budget. Although director Gavin Hood doesn't bring more insight into the film with his work, he certainly has as good of an eye for the stylish as anyone.

The first sign that you know this movie isn't going to be top tier for superhero flicks is the number of mutants/villains. For a story about one, singular X-man, there are way too many other characters to follow: Col. Stryker is their ringleader, but Sabretooth (Schriber), Wade Wilson/Deadpool (Reynolds), Bolt (Monaghan), Gambit (Kitsch), Wraith (will.i.am), Agent Zero, the Blob and young Cyclops (not to mention a slough of extras) make the film dizzying. Especially at the beginning, we need to see more Wolverine -- it's his movie.

To the film's credit, its quick movement makes it easy to watch and entertaining and there's some surprisingly good comedic timing on Jackman's part for an action movie. Seriously though, it must have been a blast (no pun intended) on the set during action sequences because they actually destroyed everything they possibly could: CGI, real and both. This film is the beginning of what will surely be mind-blowing visual effects at the movies this summer. Hood gives new visual strength to the franchise and provides a much more epic feel to this film -- it's clearly about this grand journey for Wolverine, even if it's more spectacle than introspective.

Surprisingly, the ending was the most satisfying part of the film. All the subplots converge, it makes sense and the loose ends that fans of the first three films will notice get tied up fittingly at the end. For the whole first hour of the film you're juggling Wolverine and Sabretooth's rivalry, Stryker's team of guys with powers, Wolverine's romance with Kayla out in the wilderness, what's happening to the team of guys with powers ... why the heck kid Cyclops is in the movie ... it's not overwhelming, it's just not as enjoyable when you can't focus on one thing or character as much as you'd like. Still, the ending justifies the strange means, at least in terms of the epic battle that ensues.

"Wolverine" is not a travesty for the genre, but it certainly doesn't meet the expectations for a thorough superhero movie experience. You get amped up action and style over meaning and that makes it entertainment more than catharsis. Expect to be entertained and little else and "Wolverine" will satisfy your itch for the summer movie season.

~Steven C

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4 years ago

Wolverine isn't Bad, but it's not as good as it could've been

7/10 I'll state my credentials up front: I'm a chick. I have read X-Men comics in my past, but it's been years. I don't remember every detail of every relationship and back story, so I'm not a huge X-men expert. I LOVED the original X-Men movie and X2.

I was so excited when I heard they were making a Wolverine movie. He and Gambit were my two favorite characters from the comics, and Wolverine was by far the best written and one of the best acted characters in the X-Men franchise. I thought, "This should be good!" I counted down the days until it came out. And I went to the theatre, and came out not disappointed, but not excited either. It was a middle-of-the-road movie, which seemed to not know what it wanted to be. But I would say go see it if you're an X-Men or Hugh Jackman fan.

The main crime committed in Wolverine is in the writing. I always say writers don't get enough credit on a good movie. But no amount of good acting (pretty much everyone in Wolverine does well with what they're given) and okay directing can cover up crappy writing like this. The script was all over the place. It didn't have any of the jaunty yet edgy feel of the first two X-Men movies. Wolverine's wisecracks and smart wit were all but forgotten. That would've maybe been okay if they had chosen to make Wolverine the dark, nearly evil character that he was supposed to have been before he lost his memory. But they didn't. He was neither good nor evil. This was ambivalent Wolverine. Kind of Emo Wolverine. Not above doing bad, but not really into it because it made him Feel Bad. No really interesting lines or plot points either way. The writers didn't seem to even know how to develop the relationship between Wolverine and Sabertooth. And was the love story put in by the studio just to satisfy us chicks who wouldn't go a see a comic-book movie without it? If so, the studio did us a great disservice, because if you wanted to make a story about Wolverine the lover (which, hey, I would go see), this movie wasn't that either.

And when I saw in the trailer that Gambit was in the movie, too, I was thrilled! Gambit in a movie, at last! But here he is, the underdeveloped and kind of confusing Gambit. Couldn't he at least have had his New Orleans accent? The cards were cool, but he was mostly underutilized and didn't feel like Gambit that much.

The movie does have some good moments in it where you actually say, "Yes!" I'm not putting spoilers, so I won't tell you what they are, but for me, they made the movie worth seeing. While I wouldn't put it anywhere on my worst-movie list, I wouldn't rank it with X-Men and X2 on my favorites list, either.

4 years ago

"I'm the best there is at what I do" could hardly be further from the truth

5/10 Like fellow 2009 superhero release Watchmen, Wolverine is that rare comic book film which almost appears inevitably more likely to please audiences that are not fans of the source material. However, unlike Watchmen, which adhered so closely to its source material that a falling short by comparison proved inescapable, Wolverine's inevitable backlash of fan outrage stems from its flagrant disregard for its source material. The film casually mutilates and re-writes the comic book context of its source material with the cold disdain of its protagonist, hacking one of the most genuinely compelling, subversive and horrifying superhero back-stories into the worst kind of safe, familiar, PG rated commercial dross. All of Wolverine's compelling comic book edginess is distilled into a flaccid script which forgoes exhilaration for only occasionally impressive fight/chase/explosion scenes, complexity for eye-rolling cheese and broad humour, and story cohesion for an attempt to cram in far too much subject matter and avoid the true dramatic meat of the story.

While further focus on the Wolverine/Sabertooth dichotomy could have yielded a narrative volumes stronger, the film continually broadens its scope, seemingly attempting to bank on the in-jokey winks to fans of the comics by hinting at broadening the Marvel universe in further sequels demonstrated in 2008's Iron Man and The Incredible Hulk. But while their fan nods were tasteful and enjoyable, Wolverine's attempts at matching them appear to be building up to an almost sinister bid for Fox's superhero franchises to compete. Recognizable X-Men characters are continually shoehorned into minuscule parts (fans of Deadpool, Blob, Gambit or, *groan*, Cyclops don't go in expecting much but disappointment) for seemingly the sole purpose of leapfrogging off Wolverine's story into their own spin-offs. However, such an overflowing mass of secondary characters only serves the dual purpose of both derailing Wolverine's story and not even serving to satisfy comic fans clamouring to see their favourite characters on screen, as the fleeting, shallow depictions hardly prove satisfying character development by any stretch of the imagination. If the filmmakers choose to tackle established characters to appease fan expectations, doing nothing with the characters (let alone doing them far from 'properly') hardly seems a suitable way to satisfy a demanding audience.

Director Gavin Hood (known for excellent African drama Tsotsi of all things) has been vocal about his clashes with the studio over the film, and one can only assume, given his excellent credentials, that most of his proposed changes would have been for the better. As it is, Hood demonstrates a shaky directorial presence at best, masking his action scenes in whirling cameras making it near impossible to see, and complimenting most tense or dramatic scenes with a cascade of Harry Gregson-Williams' tiresomely banal and cliched musical score. That is not to say the film is entirely devoid of quality, but it is reduced to occasional fleeting moments (sporatic bursts of creativity during fight scenes, a promising African raid plot point, and an undeniably gripping if under-explored sequence of Wolverine going through the Weapon X program). But, like the irritatingly freeze-frame beset but otherwise clever opening montage (showcasing Wolverine's progression through numerous world wars) such quality is often overshadowed by cringe-worthy prevailing flaws making it all the more difficult to appreciate.

Ironically for the film situating him most justifiably in the lead role, Hugh Jackman gives his weakest performance in his foundational role as Wolverine. While Jackman's natural charisma and steely credibility still make him a far more sturdy enough lead than his film deserved, his under-exploring of Wolverine's feral ferocity and darkness still leaves an ultimately unsatisfying taste in the mouth. Despite initial skepticism of miscasting, Liev Schreiber proves far more resonant as Wolverine's animalistic adversary Sabretooth, providing a savagely threatening yet controlled performance, which, despite falling short of the true animalistic frenzy Sabretooth should have been, proves one of the more successful attributes of the film. Similarly, Danny Huston provides a welcome dash of class as Machiavellian military official William Stryker, managing to overcome the shortcomings of an underwritten character with an impressively realized, wonderful presence. Surprisingly, Ryan Reynolds also proves welcomely appealing as twisted mercenary Deadpool, thankfully managing to suppress star showiness in favour of suitably manic humour - nonetheless, Reynolds remains tragically saddled in a far too brief role. Taylor Kitsch does not prove as strong as fan favourite Gambit - while not an outright disappointment, Kitsch stunts the character's legendary suave charisma as much as his Cajun accent, doing little to justify his character's near pointless addition.

While it may function suitably as mindless summer entertainment, the inherent complexity in Wolverine's backstory makes its reduction to such a near outright insult to fans of the comic source material. If left as a standalone film, Wolverine might have been dismissible as a mostly harmless disappointment, but with such blatant spin off begging, it evolves into something far more objectionable. While the film has its moments, as a cohesive unit it can be considered nothing less than a tragic waste of potential, floundering any inherent quality in gaping plot holes and unnecessary obvious comedy or "tearjerking" scenes. Wolverine's adage of him being "the best I am at what I do" could hardly be farther than the truth when applied to his film.

-5.5/10

4 years ago