In the future, mutant-hunting Sentinels have either hunted or captured every mutant on Earth, along with the humans who try to help them. To try to prevent this bleak future, Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and Magneto (Ian McKellen) use Kitty Pryde’s (Ellen Page) powers to send Wolverine’s (Hugh Jackman) conscience fifty years into the past. Once there, Wolverine must convince the younger Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) to work together to stop the Sentinels from being produced by Dr. Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage).
I went into X-Men: Days of Future Past with high hopes. Bryan Singer returned to the director’s chair for the first time since the amazing X2: X-Men United and one of the most beloved X-Men stories was finally getting adapted onto the silver screen. Without a doubt, Days of Future Past delivered everything that I expected and more.
First off, X-Men: Days of Future Past starts off with an explosive action scene. Many of the fan-favorite X-Men from the trilogy show up here, along with new mutants Bishop, Blink, Warpath and Sunspot. It does great to showcase how terrible things have become for the mutants and the rest of the world, as well as to display Kitty Pryde’s powers that will eventually be used to send Wolverine back to the 1970s. It’s an exhilarating opening that really got me excited for the rest of the film.
I will admit that I was a little skeptical about Peter Dinklage as Bolivar Trask, mainly because I haven’t seen him very much. But I was pleasantly surprised how well he did with the part. Dinklage pulls off the savvy business man, and the angry, mutant-hating doctor, and the crazy scientist with ease. The only thing I felt his performance needed was more screen time. It would have been great to see more of such a great performance.
Even though several new mutant characters were introduced, they aren’t seen very much. All the characters from the future don’t get fleshed out at all, mainly because a majority of the film’s focus is spent in the past. Quicksilver is the only new mutant introduced in the past who gets a decent amount of screen time and Evan Peters is fantastic as the character. In what is my favorite scene from the film shows Peters running around to knock out several security guards who pinned him and a few other characters in a small room. He shows off the character’s personality without him saying a word. I was hoping he would be a bigger part of the movie than he was. Peters’ performance stole the show and is probably the most underutilized of all the cast.
Time travel can be a particularly tricky plot device, especially when showing parallel events in the past and future like this movie. There comes a moment when you’re like, “Well if they went to the past and changed events, wouldn’t the future see those changes immediately?” This movie gives a somewhat decent explanation as to why the past and future events are able to happen concurrently. It’s a small point, but it kept me from becoming too hung up on the time travel element like I have with similar stories before.
One of my favorite aspects of X-Men: First Class was the character relationships, particularly between Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr. Unfortunately, I don’t think Days of Future Past pulled it off quite as successfully. There was a great moment between Charles and Erik during a plane flight, but other than that and maybe the final big action scene, they don’t have as many intimate moments together.
Bryan Singer returns to the X-Men universe with X-Men: Days of Future Past and does not disappoint. An exciting opening sets the stage on what to expect for the action in the rest of the film. Peter Dinklage as Bolivar Trask and Evan Peters as Quicksilver are two great additions to the cast but are underutilized, particularly Peters. Many of the other supporting characters didn’t have much screen time either, instead focusing on Charles Xavier, Erik Lehnsherr and Wolverine. Days of Future Past is the most action packed X-Men movie yet, firing on all cylinders from start to finish.
Also check out my reviews for X-Men: First Class and X-Men: Apocalypse.
Cast & Crew
Bryan Singer – Director
Simon Kinberg – Screenplay / Story
Jane Goldman – Story
Mathew Vaughn – Story
John Ottman – Composer
Hugh Jackman – Logan / Wolverine
James McAvoy – Charles Xavier (Past)
Michael Fassbender – Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto (Past)
Patrick Stewart – Charles Xavier (Future)
Ian McKellen – Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto (Future)
Jennifer Lawrence – Raven / Mystique
Nicholas Hoult – Hank / Beast
Peter Dinklage – Dr. Bolivar Trask
Josh Helman – Major Bill Stryker
Halle Berry – Storm
Ellen Page – Kitty Pryde
Shawn Ashmore – Bobby / Iceman
Omar Sy – Bishop
Daniel Cudmore – Colossus
Bingbing Fan – Blink
Adan Canto – Sunspot
Booboo Stewart – Warpath
Evan Peters – Peter / Quicksilver
Lucas Till – Havok
Evan Jonigkeit – Toad
Mark Camacho – President Nixon