Remember the X-Men animated series? Not the one that was headed up by the genius behind Biker Mice From Mars, but the earlier show. The one that featured Cyclops, Wolverine, Storm and that demonic scream that Rogue belched out whenever she absorbed too much power and left my ears bleeding. Sugah. That, was a freakin’ fantastic series from a magnificent era of animation. That’s the series that got most of us hooked on X-Men, to the point where I still use the cartoon intro as my ringtone. GUITAR SOLO TIME!
Anyway, the X-Men animated series had it all. Big action, brilliant voice actors, Wolverine suggestively stroking a picture of Jean Grey and the biggest bad of them all: Apocalypse. When En Sabah Nur appeared, you knew that a genocide was around the corner. An ancient powerhouse with a voice that could make entire armies wet themselves, Apocalypse was the biggest of bads.
And now after 16 years, he’s finally popping up as the lead antagonist in the titularly-titled X-Men: Apocalypse. So what’s the film like then? Well…it’s kind of a crapocalypse according to critics.
Contradictingly overstuffed yet still under-plotted, X-Men: Apocalypse is a lesson in frustration. When it works, it well and truly soars to new heights, but it’s simply a poo-faced slog in between those moments of elevation. But despite the oafish failings of this movie, it does end on one seriously geek-grin inducing note though, getting me genuinely pumped for the future potential of the franchise through a huge hint at some actual colourful fun with its authentically exciting new young cast taking the reins.
Whatever that movie may be – and there are blatant clues given here – hopefully it will be better than the X-tremely uneven affair we got here.
New York Daily News – 80/100
Once again, it’s Evan Peters’ Quicksilver who steals the movie whenever we see his powers in action, maybe because they’ve found a unique way to showcase them. There’s even a fun but unnecessary tangent involving another popular “X-Men” character.
I enjoyed the energy of the film, and the cast is pretty solid throughout, but there’s a big problem that is inherent to the idea that we have to make these films bigger and bigger to outdo things that have come before.
13 years later, the X-Men are bigger, and the effects used to bring their powers to life are even more convincing. But what’s missing at this point is that sense of awe and wonder from those early days. For all the fighting and blasting and bamfing, we’ve seen it all before — sometimes literally.
Apocalypse feels like a confused, kitchen-sink mess with a half dozen too many characters, a villain who amounts to a big blue nothing, and a narrative that’s so choppy and poorly cut together that it feels like you’re watching a flipbook instead of a movie.
Messier and heavier than Days Of Future Past, this is not so much the next step in the X-Men’s evolution as a failed callback to past glories.
X-Men Apocalypse is out this weekend, and next week in the US of A.
Last Updated: May 19, 2016