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Movie Reviews

X Men 2



Released: 2nd May 2003

Directed By: Brian Singer

Starring: Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen

Certificate: 12

Reviewed By: Luke Walkley

With the first instalment of X-Men receiving a large amount of praise, a sequel was highly anticipated and in 2004 we were given one.

Picking up where the original left off, we rejoin Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and his X-Men. A secret government plan to rid the world of mutants forces the X-Men to join with Magneto and Mystique in an attempt to save mutants everywhere, including themselves. Led by William Stryker, the man behind the plan a group of soldiers steal the plans for Professor  X’s ‘Cerebro’ an ingenious invention that allows him to see mutants everywhere. However in Strykers hands it becomes a deadly weapon with the ability to kill every mutant.

The original cast returns along with a range of fantastic new additions. Nightcrawler being my personal favourite a man covered in angelic symbols with the ability to teleport. Stryker becomes the new villain as Magneto and Xavier work together to prevent his attempt to rid the world of their mutant kind.

Like the first film, there is a strong focus on the relationships between characters. More storylines are developed and there is a greater look at the back stories of the main characters. Stryker’s inclusion as the villain instead of Magneto doesn’t give the film quite the same edge- while the acting is of a good standard the man himself lacks the depth that Magneto had and always seems less of a threat to the X-Men.

The visuals remain of a high standard; the powers of Nightcrawler, Storm and Magneto all look fantastic and create what each fan of the comics could only have imagined they would look like.  The visuals are one of the films saving graces. The plot of this sequel lacks a certain something, perhaps it is the fact there isn’t a strong enough build up. As I mentioned, Stryker lacks the villainous streak that Ian McKellen portrays as Magneto and therefore the emotion of the film doesn’t enjoy a strong enough build up. Therefore when we witness the climax it appears a little lacklustre in its delivery.

While X-Men 2 lacks the magnitude of the first film, its development of the back story and the characters allow it to stand in good stead against the rest of the super hero movies, It is certainly more enjoyable than the first Spiderman sequel. X-Men 2 does its best to live up to the high standard set by its predecessor, however while it does fall slightly short, it is still a decent action film and continues the series along the right path.

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