Movie Review: Logan

Logan is an affecting, visceral and grounded superhero flick, delivering a poignant drama of an aging hero and a satisfying send-off thanks to a thoughtful screenplay and great performances from its cast.

In the near future, a weary Logan cares for an ailing Professor X in a hideout on the Mexican border. But Logan’s attempts to hide from the world and his legacy are up-ended when a young mutant arrives, being pursued by dark forces.

Logan, the last of the Jackman Wolverine franchise, changes the game by stripping down its comic book elements to deliver a grounded superhero flick. Here, Wolverine cuts through limbs as effectively as his story of the aging hero pierces through your emotions.

The screenplay throws an aging Wolverine and an ailing Professor X on the road with a new mutant. While the plot is essentially one big chase, it weaves in a poignant drama. Logan and Charles are forced out of hiding and in the process, also forced to confront their issues. Wolverine has a violent past that he carries around in pain, more so because it has led to a life he didn’t ask for, while Charles has become a dangerous relic of a forgotten world.

Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart deliver nuanced performances. Dafne Keen convincingly snaps from innocent kid to feral mutant and she definitely has a bright future ahead of her. The rest of the cast, albeit with little to do, does well enough.

This of course, doesn’t mean that the last Wolverine movie (well with Hugh Jackman) is bleak and mopey. The deft direction and cinematography gives us well staged action scenes and expressive imagery. The movie made the wise decision to do away with cameos and rip-roar entertainment, focusing on scrappy brutal fights and character moments. While it can get very violent, they’re not just there for fan service.

While Logan has surpassed its genre and plenty of X-men movies before it, it’s a stretched out redemption story with a worthless villain. Stewart is more than reliable in his role, but the old man’s unlikely bond with a kid would have been better off used to forge a relationship between X-23 and X-24.

Still, Logan shows us how grisly Wolverine can get without losing track of the person to whom his adamantium claws belong. By balancing action with drama, its both a satisfying send-off and an entertaining standalone superhero flick with depth.

In the end, Logan shows us what superhero stories are capable of and what makes us drawn to them. Its not just about fighting for your place in this world it’s also about coming to terms with one’s self, revealing the humanity behind the myth.

My Rating: 8/10

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