X-Men: First Class

X-Men: First Class is a 2011 20th Century Fox and Marvel Studios super hero action film and is based off the Marvel Comics series of the same name.  It is a reboot of the X-Men movie franchise that started in 2000 with X-Men, and was followed by two sequels: 2003’s X2 and 2006’s X-Men: The Last Stand, and a prequel/spinoff film in 2009 with X-Men Origins: WolverineX-Men: First Class was released in 2D only.

This film stars James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Rose Byrne, January Jones, Academy Award Nominee Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Lucas Till, Caleb Landry Jones, Zoë Kravitz, Jason Flemyng, Álex González, with Oliver Platt, and Kevin Bacon.

The music is written and composed by Henry Pryce Jackman.

The film is produced by 20th Century Fox, Marvel Studios, Donners’ Company, Bad Hat Harry Productions, and Marv Films.  It is distributed by 20th Century Fox.

it is directed by Matthew Vaughn.

All right, X-Men: First Class is without a doubt the best movie I have seen this year (even though it’s only June).  I haven’t enjoyed a comic book film this much since 2008 when DC‘s The Dark Knight hit theaters in July.  YES IT’S THAT GOOD IN MY OPINION!!!  Just about everything was right with the movie.

The overall story was extremely impressive.  The setting of the 1960s and the Cuban Missile Crisis was the perfect backdrop for this movie.  Director Matthew Vaughn really used everything he could to his advantage, including reshooting the opening scene to X-Men to use for his movie.

Every actor did an impressive job in their roles, but the true highlights of the film have to be James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, and Kevin Bacon.  Each one of these men definitely brought their A games to this movie.  McAvoy’s portrayal of Charles Xavier was truly exceptional.  His cocky and superior attitude was such a breath of fresh air for the character.  It was such an awesome experience to watch the character mature on screen into who we would all eventually know the character to be.  The same can be said about Fassbender and his portrayal of Erik Lensherr is just perfect in my eyes.  He took what the great Ian McKellen started with the original film and made it his own completely.  The friendship between Charles and Erik is an amazing thing to see on the screen.  While you hear about their friendship in the other films, seeing it actually play out was something else all together.  And finally, KEVIN BACON!!!  As the villain, Sebastian Shaw, Kevin Bacon was a force to be feared.  With the huge pompous attitude, Italian suits, and power to absorb energy, Sebastian Shaw is one of the most badass characters to ever come out of the X-Men universe.  Kevin Bacon played the character with such ease that he was able to just have fun throughout the entire movie.

All the other characters felt like complete individuals, even the ones that didn’t get a lot of screen time (There wasn’t one of them that felt like they needed more, and at the same time, none of them felt like they were just shoe-horned into the movie just to have more mutants in the movie.

The score for the film was written by Henry Jackman, who is a relative new comer to the scene.  However, my personal feelings about this…he killed the music in the film.  This is (at this time) my favorite score of the year.  Every song perfectly fit the scene it was playing in.  A personal shout out to the recruiting scene, training montage, and raising the sub!!!

Matthew Vaughn proved to Fox why not letting him direct X-Men: The Last Stand was the worst decision that they could have made (especially since they replaced him with that hack Brett Ratner).  Everything from the story, to the actors, to the special effects were just spot on.  And with a budget of only $120M…I think Fox is kicking themselves in the ass over Brett Ratner and Gavin Hood, especially considering X-Men: The Last Stand cost a whopping $210M and X-Men Origins: Wolverine cost $150M, and both of those movies were just plain awful.

Honestly, the one complaint I can say about this movie is that I didn’t think it was long enough, even with a playtime of about 2 hours and 20 minutes.  I would have loved to have seen a longer training montage (just because I’m a fan of training montages), maybe some more time with the recruiting scenes…things like that.

I don’t want to give away any spoilers, but there are two EXCELLENT cameos in the film.

With all of that said, X-Men: First Class (as of the middle of the year) is my favorite and best movie of the year.

a 9 out of 10

(release date: 3 June 2011)

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~ by Matt Whitfield on July 3, 2011.

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