I’m not an X-Men Origins: Wolverine hater…I thought it was stupid fun. Still, many despised it, so this is a new attempt to take Hugh Jackman’s Logan into a freestanding franchise. Directed by James Mangold goes a darker, more serious route, but proves quite adept at making an action scene (the opening scene in Nagasaki and a fight above a bullet train are incredible). Jackman, who has a lot more veins popping than the last time we saw him, still has a blast in the title role. The plot involves an old friend of Wolverine’s looking for the key to eternal life, which Wolverine actually has, so this makes him a mutant of extra purpose. Most of the action takes place in Japan, and Wolverine loses his powers for a stretch, so we get the odd sight of him bleeding and getting lethargic. Mangold and his crew must get credit for filming two of the year’s most beautiful women…Tao Okamoto and Rila Fukushima. Good lord, these two are remarkable looking. Famke Janssen makes some dream appearances as Jean Grey, and, yes, stay through the credits to get what some might consider to be the film’s best scene.
Director: James Mangold
Producer: Lauren Shuler Donner, Hutch Parker, Hugh Jackman, Stan Lee and Joseph Caracciolo Jr.
Cast: Hugh Jackman, Hiroyuki Sanada, Famke Janssen, Will Lee, Rila Fukushima, Tao Okamoto, Svetlana Khodchenkova, Haruhiko Yamanouchi, Brian Tee, Hal Yamanouchi and Ken Yamamura