Intro: X-Men Origins: Wolverine was released on May 1, 2009. This film was directed by Gavin Hood, and it had a budget of 150 million dollars. It made a little over 85 million during its opening weekend. X-Men Origins: Wolverine was considered a failure by most with Rotten Tomatoes only giving it a 38%. Like most X-Men films, Origins features a slew of new characters as well as Hugh Jackman reprising Wolverine.
Summary/Plot: X-Men Origins: Wolverine focuses on James Howlett’s journey to becoming Wolverine. James realizes that he has strange bone claws that emerge from his fists, and his brother Victor Creed (Sabretooth) helps James escape from home. The two form a strong bond, but this bond is eventually broken as Victor gives into his animal nature. James Howlett leaves his brother to seek out a normal life, but this will soon be taken from him as Colonel William Stryker has other plans in mind. Stryker convinces James to be a test subject in a experiment for a new indestructible metal, adamantium. Howlett becomes Wolverine while suffering loss and seeking revenge in this origin film. However, the plot of this film creates a new origin story for Wolverine instead of basing it on the Weapon X comics. The other difficulty this film encounters is it’s placement in the X-Men movie franchise. 7/10
Cinematography: The cinematography for X-Men Origins was lacking most of the time. This film tried to do too much. Many action and fast-paced scenes are blurred and one can see the noticeable CGI effects. On the other hand, there were some high moments. One of the best scenes is where Agent Zero takes down a host of enemies with his two handguns. This scene is clean and one continuous action sequence. It holds up very well as compared to other scenes in the film. Another good CGI scene occurs when Gambit is introduced. Gambit’s flying deck of cards and purple kinetic energy is exciting to watch. At the same time, most other scenes in this film are a letdown. Wolverine’s claws are noticeably CGI along with the climatic action sequence between Wolverine and Deadpool. 6/10
Characterization: The characterization was totally lacking in this film. Origins displays so many characters with so little development that it is difficult to become invested in them. The film heavily relies on Hugh Jackman’s performance. Some actors, like Ryan Reynolds and Taylor Kitsch, have great performances, but their lack of screen time overshadows this fact. Hugh Jackman did his best with what he was given, but the writing and plot take away from Jackman’s performance. 6/10
Conclusion: This film was slow moving and crowded. From the time-jumping montage in the beginning of the film to the obvious plot holes, this film is depressing to watch. The plot holes range from Sabretooth’s odd power set to Stryker’s lack of forethought. The comic book story of Wolverine’s origins is great, but this film never capitalized on it. Weapon 11 (Deadpool) is disappointing. Because of this, what should be a climactic and tense fight becomes a laughable and predictable conclusion. Unfortunately the film is a sad representation of what could have been a fabulous movie.
Final Score: 6.3