* * * B
It seems odd to give this film the same rating as “Captain America: Civil War“, since “X-Men: Apocalpse” is in many ways inferior, but while it doesn’t reach the highs of the latest MCU film, the latest in the rebooted X-Men franchise delivers solid entertainment without the unbelievable denial of common sense required by Civil War. The film is action packed, with lots to like and little to complain about.
I’m going to keep this review spoiler free, but assume you’ve seen the trailers. The film continues the rebooted series’s reframing of Mystique (Jennifer “Katniss” Lawrence) as a true hero, who simply follows a difference path from Prof. Xavier (James McAvoy). Magneto (Michael Fassbender) continues to be a tortured anti-hero.
Returning X-men Beast (Nicholas “R” Hoult), Havoc (Lucas Till), and Quicksilver (Evan Peters) are joined by newcomers Jean Grey (Sophie “Sansa” Turner), Cyclops (Tye Sheridan), and Night Crawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee). Along with the Prof., Mystique, and Dr. Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne), they must battle a new menace, Apocalypse (Oscar “Poe” Isaac), the first mutant, who, with his four horsemen, Storm (Alexandra Shipp), Psylocke (Olivia Munn), Angel (Ben Hardy), and Magneto, is out to destroy the world.
“No matter how many times you save the world, it always manages to get back in jeopardy again. Sometimes I just want it to stay saved! You know, for a little bit? I feel like the maid; I just cleaned up this mess! Can we keep it clean for… for ten minutes!”
— Mr. Incredible
Tired plot tropes aside, Fassbender gets kudos for some fantastic acting in what are for me the most poignant scenes in the film. There is also another excellent sequence with Quicksilver, and Evan Peters does a wonderful job at playing the lovable loser, managing to steal quite a few scenes (“we don’t know, dude!”). Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) plays a short but epic role, as does his nemesis Col. Striker (Josh Helman). This film was packed, maybe with a little too much. But definitely worth seeing.