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'Logan' Is Violent, Funny And Surprisingly Moving

By seank

March 6, 2017 at 1:41pm


Review: Logan

Plot: The year is 2029. After several hundred years of life filled with violence and pain, Logan is finally showing signs of aging, as is the dementia-suffering telepath Professor Xavier. Logan just wants to see out his remains days in peace aboard a yacht, but the unwanted appearance of a feral little girl and a sinister military organisation threatens to drag him back to a life of heroics...

Starring: Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Dafne Keen, Boyd Holbrook, Richard E Grant, Stephen Merchant

Our thoughts: If blood and gore turns you right off, this isn't for you. But if you can get over that, Logan is a surprisingly moving tale of redemption and the perfect swan song for one of cinema's most iconic heroes. 

Logan is technically part of the X-Men cinematic universe, but let's make something clear: this is no ordinary comic book movie. Director James Mangold said he wanted the film to be "Little Miss Sunshine with Logan" and that's pretty much what you get.

This is Jackman's third solo outing as metal-clawed, fast-healing Wolverine. The previous instalments were marred by criticism that a character with knives for hands couldn't be done justice without some visercal, gorey action.

That was until Deadpool was released, became the most successful R-rated movie of all time, and proved that it could be done. That was how Logan got the green light.

And bloody it is.

The film is set in 2029 and mutants are now very much a dying breed. Logan and his old mentor Professor X are now hiding in the desert, both old men. But a nurse has tracked the legendary Wolverine to this desolate place to seek help for her and her 'daughter', Laura.

When we first meet our hero he is drunkly passed out on the back seat of his car (he earns a living as a chauffeur now) which is in the process of being stolen by gangsters. After briefly trying to handle the situation peacefully, the quick-to-anger mutant goes sloppily berserk on the thieves, before promptly regretting what he's done.

We see him go about his daily life, which involves driving teenagers to their prom, scoring drugs to keep the dangerously unstable Professor X sedated, and drinking himself into oblivion. It's not a happy life, but he's never really known what that was.

Questions hang above the story: why are the pair of mutants in hiding? What happened to the other X-Men? Why is Logan falling apart? There is no explicit info dump, but the answers are strongly hinted at. 

There's a braveness to the story that's uncharacteristic of a comic book movie, where every instalment seems to follow the same, safe formula. Mangold stated he wanted to avoid a "CGI cluster fuck" that's typical of the genre.

This is more intimate, a road trip story where we watch the relationship between Logan, Professor X and Laura play out. There is one scene in particular in which the trio find themselves easily bantering with a family who've invited them to dinner that's simply a joy to behold.

There are funny moments too, foul-mouthed Professor X is a breath of fresh air and Stephen Merchant's albino caregiver has no problem giving Logan a hard time over his self-destructive behaviour.

The villains of the piece are played by Narcos' Boyd Holbrook and Richard E Grant. Holbrook's cyborg mercenary is enjoyably hammy, while Grant's evil genius feels more perfunctory, as if you can't have an X-Men movie without a mad scientist.

There is another bad guy in the mix too, but we won't ruin the surprise here.

Action-packed, charming and genuinely touching, Logan doesn't disappoint.

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