Alam mo yung ex mo na maitsura naman, masaya naman kasama, pero alam mo lang na may mali? Yung tipong walang lalim at hindi mo makausap tungkol sa mga seryosong bagay? So brineakan mo only to find out years later na nagbago na siya. Mas mature na siyang tao at hindi na siya pumapapak ng Milo na walang tubig? That’s how some audiences probably feel about Logan, a movie that finally got the character right after 8th attempts and exactly 17 long freaking years of Hugh Jackman playing the character.
Logan starts off in the year 2029. Not much looks different but it’s been said that tigers have gone extinct. Mutants? They’re actually not far behind with only just a handful of them left. Wolverine, instead of saving the world from sentinels, is now a limo driver who drives around drunk college kids and bachelorettes around El Paso, Texas. He still looks good if you consider the fact that he’s more than a hundred years old and has received thousands of gunshot wounds over the past few decades. But he’s definitely worse for wear. He walks with a limp, his eyesight is failing him and his wounds don’t heal as fast. His iconic adamantium claws don’t even come all the way out anymore.
When he’s not busy doing that, he finds himself taking care of a senile 90-something year old Charles Xavier who now spends his days mumbling to himself and riding his wheelchair aimlessly inside a dilapidated metallic dome. No longer the distinguished professor we all once knew, he now says “fuck” almost as often as Logan does. Along with the professor, Logan has to take care of an 11 year old mutant girl with anger management issues and bring her to safety. The mansion is gone, Cerebro is gone, the X-Men is gone. Clearly, Logan, is not how you remember X-men movies to be.
In terms of depth and atmosphere, Logan is a huge departure from X-Men and Wolverine movies in the past. The difference is so drastic that it’s hard to imagine that these films actually exist in the same universe. Think of it this way, para silang magkakapatid na babae na yung bunso hawig ni Pia Wurtzbach tapos yung dalawang nauna sa kanya mukhang mga bouncer sa club. That’s how different Logan is to the two Wolverine films that came before it. Aesthetically, Logan has actually more in common with Oscar-nominared movies like No Country For Old Men and Hell or High Water.
The most obvious difference is of course the level of violence. Just 5 minutes into the movie and you’ll quickly realize that this is different from the X-Men movies of the past. A brief skirmish with Mexican gangsters in the beginning of the film saw Logan chop someone’s hand and leg off in a fit of rage in a scene that is honestly more glorious than any fight scene we’ve scene from any of the previous Wolverine movies. It’s actually about time that they upped the level of violence too. Let’s be honest, may kutsilyo sa kamao si Logan tapos pag sumuntok siya wala man lang dugo yung nasaksak niya? Kalokohan di ba?
One convenient explanation why Logan is so different from the previous ones is offered by Wolverine himself when he talked about how the things people have read in comicbooks is so much different than how things actually happened to the X-Men in real life. You could actually argue that the previous X-Men movies are part of those exaggerated depictions of their exploits and are being told in the reality where the movie Logan takes place. Astig di ba? That would actually make a lot of sense.
In X-Men: Apocalypse, we saw Apocalypse destroy Egypt dahil kumag siya at masama ang gising niya pagkatapos matulog ng ilang libong taon. Logan takes a very different route and foregoes big set pieces like that one. Doing so allowed it to tell a more introspective and contemplative story that is so much different from any superhero movie we’ve seen before. It’s not even the fact that it’s an R-rated movie because Deadpool already did that and earned a Golden Globe nomination in the process. Pero kengkoy pa rin si Deadpool e. May lalim yung kuwento ni Logan and it actually hold its own as a “good movie” in the same way the Batman films from Christopher Nolan has.
In terms of performance, this is the best one for both Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart as Wolverine and Professor X. They have always been great actors in the past and have been the bright spots in the previous X-Men movies no matter how terrible some of the movies were, but the main difference is that the screenplay for Logan actually gives them something to work with. Both are war-weary and have done and seen a lot of nasty shit in the past and that shows in their performance. Kita mo yung pagod at sakit sa bawat hakbang ni Logan e.
It also helps that for the first time, they are actually vulnerable. Wolverine has always been an indestructible dynamo pero ngayon pati muscles niya lumalawlaw na. Si Professor X naman kailangan pang alalayan para mag banyo and he actually suffers from very dangerous seizures. If Logan really is the last time that they’re playing these characters, then it’s definitely a nice send-off for sure. Although it’s such a shame that it took them this long to be given the chance to really shine.
Logan is easily the best movie in the X-Men franchise because some of the films in the series have actually been terrible. (I’m looking at you, X-Men: The Last Stand, you horrible piece of shit of a movie) While most comic book fans and film critics will probably enjoy this one, casual moviegoers might not like the fact that the film sacrificed entertainment for substance. Sure, it’s a better movie overall but it can get pretty depressing at times and it falters a bit in the end. But it’s still a welcome change from your standard superhero movie. It shows us that you don’t have to dumb down a superhero movie in order for audiences to like it. Ride off into the sunset, Logan.
Rating: 4 out 5 stars