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Barenaked Reviews 'Logan'; Deadpool + Story = Marvel All Grown Up

Barenaked Reviews 'Logan'; Deadpool + Story = Marvel All Grown Up

Deadpool + Story = Marvel All Grown Up

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Synopsis

In the near future the mighty Wolverine (aka Logan), from X-Men legend, is now an ailing alcoholic who makes a living as a chauffer. Logan is using the money to hide the now senior citizen Professor X, who without his pills suffers from seizures that affects all brains within a nearby radius. A woman caring for a young girl, both on the run, come to Logan for help and he initially doesn't want anything to do with the people chasing after them, who represent a research company genetically creating mutants at the expense of the lives of existing mutants. Circumstances, and the urging of the Professor, force him to help them on their mission despite his reservations that their plan is based solely off a note from a X-Men comic book.


Who's In It?

Bullet Points


*Spoiler-Free* Quickie

Back in 03/2016 when the people behind Logan declared the next Wolverine movie will also be rated R, after Marvel's first R-rated film Deadpool (with Ryan Reynolds) found major success in theaters, I was worried this would mean Hugh Jackman's farewell-to-Wolverine movie would be like Deadpool but with a Jason Statham-esque lead; no depth and all action. What makes a R rating work for Deadpool is that it allows Ryan Reynolds to have wild sex with his lady & kill bad guys by stabbing them in their scrotum, all the while cracking sarcastic jokes. What makes a R rating work for Jason Statham is he gets to run for 1.5 hours and kill a million people along the way. Love or hate the original X-Men movies, Wolverine's character has always been about depth and is in the middle between a Statham action-fest and a Reynolds gab-fest.

Depth is exactly what Logan delivers. It takes the sex and gore from Deadpool and adds to that a story about a guy who's seen better days and can't take the responsibility of his power anymore; but he can't just kill himself because he's the only one who can take care of his senior citizen mentor Professor X and, as the movie plays out, is the only one who can take care of a young stray girl. Logan isn't just an excellent comic book movie, it's an excellent movie and it makes such a large statement about the superhero genre I'm not even sure I've processed the entire statement after 2 days. Thus Logan earned:

6/7 Robot Hands

*Spoilers* Deadpool + Story = Marvel All Grown Up

Before watching Logan I had seen Hugh Jackman's Wolverine (real name Logan) look, well, old in the trailers and images. I was not aware before watching Logan that the story takes place in the near future, "near future" being 2029, per a lead-in trailer for Deadpool 2, which served as the cute Pixar-esque-lead-in to Logan. The Deadpool lead-in was very appropriate as soon after Ryan Reynolds' Deadpool, famously Marvel's 1st R-rated comic book movie, found major success in theaters in 03/2016 the people behind Logan declared the next Wolverine movie will be rated R. For Deadpool it was pretty clear what being R would yield; wild sex scenes with his lady & graphic kills of henchmen by stabbing them in the scrotum. But what does a R rating mean for The Wolverine, a character who, love or hate the original X-Men movies, was always about questioning everyone's motives and demanding to know why having claws come out of his hands meant he needed to be bothered by everyone else's problems?

As mentioned, the ad's and promo's all made Wolverine & Professor X (Patrick Stewart) look visibly old. Logan doesn't shy away from age, the movie uses it to tell a different kind of superhero story using characters that have been regularly in theaters with the same key actors portraying them for a decade. The movie opens up on Logan waking up from an alcoholic stupor to find his car, a limousine, being vandalized by a gang. He tries to shoo them away, they don't listen, they get the claws. You then find out Wolverine goes by Logan, works as a limo chauffer, and is using the money to care for and hide a now senior-citizen Professor X who needs the pills to subside seizures which, due to his heightened mental abilities, can affect the brains of people for miles around. Logan, who has long pushed against the weight of the responsibility to do good that the X-Men thrust on him, is battling alcohol and his restorative powers aren't quite up to par. Add to that Professor X wants to escape from hiding and live his life in harmony with his powers but, besides being wheel-chair bound and needing help to go to the bathroom and to be put to bed, Logan just wants to earn enough money so that he and the Professor can live off a boat and escape mutant persecution.

Wolverine & Professor X now live in a reality where the government has mostly killed off all mutants, however they soon find out the government has been taking DNA samples from the mutants they've been trying to kill to experiment and genetically recreate them so that mutants can be controlled. Due to human rights violations in other countries, the experiments are taking place in Mexico and many of the powers from the former mutants have now been successfully recreated in children born from young women who were killed after bearing the children. However, the children mutants couldn't be controlled so the experiment was shut down but one of the kids managed to escape. This turns out to be Logan's genetic daughter who stumbles upon Logan & Professor X, tells them her story, and they all attempt to help her escape from the government who knows she still exists and is trying to find her so they can eliminate all evidence of their failed experiment.

On an episode of the podcast Business Insider Logan's director James Mangold criticized superhero movies of late saying, "...they are not movies...they are bloated exercises in two-hour trailers for another movie they are going to sell you in two years." He goes on to say that due to the number of characters in the movie, "You take 120 minutes, you take 45 of it for action, what you are left with, divide it by six characters, you have the character arc of Elmer Fudd in a Warner Brothers cartoon." So then what do you get when you allow Wolverine to be rated R? You get: (the sex & gore of Deadpool) + (a story about an aging guy with incredible powers who would like nothing more than to kill himself but he can't because he's the only who can take care of his senior-citzen mentor & a daughter he didn't know he had). Add all that up and what you don't get is another superhero-beat-em-up, but instead Marvel growing up. No longer can a superhero movie maker complain about the trappings of the Hollywood industry when Logan succeeded in being the first superhero movie to bring humanity to the genre as well as bringing the cash money to the box office. My rating takes this into account, cuts 2/7 off for suddenly being a comic book movie at the end, but adds another 1/7 for me knowing that I can watch it again. Thus 6/7 Robot Hands

Show Notes

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