A superhero movie centred around the most iconic of X-Men. This is hardly somewhere that you’d expect to find a masterclass of vulnerability. These days anyone who can predict what they’re going to get from a superhero movie is lying. Like, who would have predictable that Lego Batman would have been a more coherent story than Suicide Squad? But when it comes to Logan I think most of the audience could tell what kind of tone this movie would have.
It was clear from the title. Simply “Logan”, not Wolverine. Not the super invulnerable unstopping force, not the one man army that could take on armies and demi-gods without a scratch on him. The movie establishes early on that, “Wolverine” is long gone and in his place? A very human, somewhat feeble shell of a former hero.
The setting of Logan
We’re a few decades in the future and things are looking pretty bad for the human race. After an apocalyptic event mutants are outlawed. A sinister authority rounds them up and essentially enslaves them for hard labour. Logan (Hugh Jackman) is in hiding as a limo driver near the Mexican border. It’s kind of funny the border actually has a wall – insert witty political commentary here).
At the same time he an alcoholic, whose body is failing him. The amount of punishment it’s absorbed over the years finally are catching up to him. When those blade of his are out it hurts like hell. Logan lives in a wrecked water tower with Charles Xavier, (Patrick Stewart). Xavier, like Logan, isn’t what he used to be. He’s feeble, in his 90s and he needs powerful meds to prevent brain seizures. You know, the kind that causes earthquakes. The ever loyal Logan has basically become his carer.
The life of Logan
Naturally, Logan being Logan has several enemies making life all the more difficult. Namely, Donald Pierce (Boyd Holbrook) and his employer, technocrat Zander Rice (Played by a typical chilling Richard E. Grant). But then Logan runs across Gabriela (Elizabeth Rodriguez). Gabriela tells him about Laura (Dafne Keen) – a child who appears to have very powerful abilities. She’s got the potential to spark the next generation of mutants.
Of course, Logan has to protect Laura across the harsh landscape. He might even meet a similarly grumpy bearded man named Joel. Joel is also on a mission to protect a child named Ellie who also has world-saving powers. It’s the crossover we never knew we wanted)
Logan is the blueprint for modern hero movies
To be blunt, this is the movie, that the likes of Suicide Squad and Batman Vs Superman SHOULD have been. An impossibly dark yet strangely uplifting character study, with thoughtful and impressive writing. In the year 2017, this should be the blueprint for what superhero films should be. It’s the first superhero movie in a long while that seems to treat comic book films like any other serious film. Films that just happen to be starring comic book characters.
You could almost describe Logan as an old western movie. Jackman is the old gun slinging outlaw feeble and broken down. He has one last ride in him carrying the full weight of his eight other big-screen iconic appearances. It’s funny to think that way back in the year 2000 where there were doubts about if he could fit the role. Seventeen years later it’s utterly impossible to see anyone else in the role.
Then there’s Steward’s Swan song as Charles Xavier. Equally as potent as it is heartbreaking and while the supporting cast knocks it out of the park. It’s the Jackman and Steward show.
It was as pulse racing it was touching. It was absolutely heart-wrenching, and at times it was even funny. As superhero movies go, it was practically flawless and it will take some effort from Marvel and DC to top it as the best Super Hero movie of the current era.