VIDEO: X-Men (2000) / X2 (2003)

Solkir examines the recurring themes of the movie version of X-Men and its 2003 sequel X2! What is this sim-ball-ism of which you speak? Never heard of such a thing.

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  • Necroglobule

    I’m actually praying that Fox stops making Wolverine films (yes, I said Wolverine films because there’s been only ONE movie they’ve made that’s actually about the X-Men) so the film rights will go back over to Marvel so we can finally get a real X-Men movie. Sadly it looks like Days of Future Past is going to be another film where the main plot is “Look how cool Wolverine is!”.

    I hear X-Men 6 is going to be just Hugh Jackman snarling at the camera for two hours. It’ll make a billion dollars.

  • MephLord

    There is so much more about these movies you could’ve talked about. And I hope for expanded reviews at some point. Ian McKellan in particular was drawn to the movies because of the parallels of homosexuality and persecution because he is gay. X3 really dropped the ball but I still feel the first two movies show an understanding of the allegory of minorities and the issues they face and how the overall world will have elements that disagree that will try to recreate their utopia. Ultimately something has to give.

    • Gallen_Dugall

      This worked as a focused discussion on a single (very prominent) theme, but yeah I was left wanting more too. Not entirely a bad thing.

  • CaptainCalvinCat

    Concerning the movies, I have to be honest here, I liked the 3rd movie much more than the second. The first was cool, too, but somehow I managed to doze off some times in movie 2. That didn’t happen to me in 1 and in 3.

    • Gallen_Dugall

      I don’t see a lot of difference between the three. In all three films I felt mechanically moved from one special effects scene to the next with the most satisfying of which (because I remember them) being the confrontation with the cops on the porch and the school raid. I vaguely remember some big goofy fight at the end of 3, I remember Magneto stopping bullets multiple times and thinking, “Lead isn’t ferrous.” and I remember Wolverine cutting things as if his claws had no width.

  • Gallen_Dugall

    From the Realm of “Unrequested Advice For Whatever It’s Worth”: I think you should have lumped in the third film for contrasting purposes. Yes, the movies aren’t subtle. At times neither are the comics. While I’ve enjoyed this series I’ve ended up skipping through large segments of what felt like minutes of padding in the last two to get to your opinion and observations, which is all I’m really interested in here.

    From the Realm of “Everyone’s Got One”: IMO the films grossly softball the anti-mutant/anti-gay theme. They try to mirror the two instead of ramping it up to a speculative society on the verge of civil war over the issue (it never feels like that), this would have turned acceptable commentary into quality speculative fiction. Because of this these films come off (to me) primarily as safe processed mass media fan service and pandering. Villains lacking in reasonable plans/goals being a major hurdle to this because they come off as straw men set up to be knocked down by “People Who Think Like Us Wink Wink Nudge Nudge Aren’t We Great” but more than subtle enough that the mush brains of the world will miss it, which is pretty unsatisfying and ultimately does nothing to move the conversation forward… which is what these movies could have been.

    • Solkir

      I’m waiting to do 3, because I feel like that needs an entire episode to itself.

      And I see what you’re saying, and that’s actually what I thought The Last Stand was going to be. That’s how they marketed it. Unfortunately it just turned out to be a less interesting retelling of 2

      • Mike

        But wasn’t three really the only that addressed even remotely the dillema you mention near the end: that even societies leader who try to live peacefully with mutant kind they might still justify having a special operations for fighting some of them? Well, I suppose First Stand also touch on this and maybe even did a better job of it.
        I guess what I’m saying is the minority in liking X-Men 3 and the first prequel (they I did some major problems with both) was that they weren’t quite so black and white about “outsiders untied against the SYSTEM” conflict. They had Government leaders who didn’t really hate mutants, but knew that many were still a major threat so they realized it’s a good idea to have some of them working with us on the inside.
        If they could create a movie or tv series based on the comic X-Facter which is about a team of mutants that work for the U.S. Government, that could raise a whole lot of new interesting conflicts that haven’t been seen in speculative fiction as much.

  • Jason Withrow

    Interesting take on Jason Stryker, I can’t really decide if I would have rather they underlined that or not, but I think you’ve got it.

    The issues of using superheroes as allegory for non-superheroes really blunted Marvel’s Civil War as well. I’m sure Marvel-the-company was happy with any sales that might have been generated by people taking the opposite side but ultimately it’s always going to be fallacious in the end.

  • Cheshire Cat

    It’s an unfortunate truth that the world sees Christians the way it does ( unfortunate that there are Christians out there like this). We, yes I am one, are not all like that. Am I against homosexuality? Yes. But this doesn’t mean I hate them. The Word of God tells me to love everyone and not cast down my judgement upon anyone (Matthew chapter 7). I am not perfect. I am saved by God’s grace and forgiveness, not by my works or my lifestyle. Solkir, I adore you and love your reviews. Keep up the good work.

    • Gallen_Dugall

      “The surest way to corrupt a youth is to instruct him to hold in higher esteem those who think alike than those who think differently.” – Friedrich Nietzsche

      • Cheshire Cat

        I embrace differences. If we were all alike, the world would be a boring place. My faith doesn’t contradict my love of all races, creeds and lifestyles. My faith is what draws me to the world with open arms. I hold no grudges, nor do I make judgement on any persons. Is it too much to ask that the same regard be given me?

        • Gallen_Dugall

          What you initially said called that to mind, and yes, it applies to everybody

  • Thomas Stockel

    A very interesting analysis of the X-Men movies, Sol. I appreciate how you point out how an allegory can go only so far before it breaks down.