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X-Men Reviews 4

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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:21 am

http://wherediditallgorightblog.wordpress.com/2011/06/13/origins-are-the-only-fruit/

Origins are the only fruit

13 Jun

Again, the Curzon cinema supplements its diet of arthouse, foreign and independent films with a garden variety blockbuster, albeit not exactly a dumb one: X-Men First Class, which I have been looking forward to not because I am a Marvel nut with an encyclopaedic knowledge of the source comics, but because I liked the first three films. (I’ve never seen the one about just Wolverine, as he was always my least favourite X-Man. Let me know if I’ve made a massive tactical error.) The new one, directed by Matthew Vaughn, who was all set to direct X-3 but had to pull out – regretting it ever since – also has Jane Goldman’s name on the credits, which further enhances her reputation of one of this country’s hottest screenwriters, particularly in the fantasy/sci-fi/comic book genre. If she keeps this up, pretty soon they’ll have to start calling Jonathan Ross “Jane Goldman’s husband,” which I’m sure he would welcome.

Although US-sourced, X-Men has a deeply English root, namely Professor Xavier, Oxford-educated young gentleman whose estate where the mutants are fostered and schooled, is in upstate New York but may as well be in Berkshire. First Class, an origins story to match Batman Begins and, although vastly superior, the second Star Wars trilogy, opens with Xavier as a boy, meeting Raven/Mystique, in his Westchester kitchen, the same year, 1944, that the future Magneto is being tortured by the Nazis and discovering what his unlocked anger can do to nearby metal. From these beginnings, it shifts forward to 1962 and the Cold War, and cleverly presses the actual Cuban Missile Crisis into service as a plot device to unite the seemingly unready young X-Kids in battle, and to test out their mutant superpowers off the Cuban coast. This film is drenched in special effects – there were so many technicians and digital wizards working on First Class, the closing credits were forced to stack them into five columns in order to cram them all in before the music finished. There are a number of money-shot set-pieces, all of which build to the nuclear stand-off on the cusp of the blockade, but strip away all the binary code, and you’re still left with a decent script, some good gags (James McAvoy, as the young Xavier, on being granted his professorship, says, “I’ll be going bald next” – a sly reference to the fact that Patrick Stewart will play him in much later life), and a credible narrative jigsaw which lays all the key pieces out on the table, such that not only do we understand how the gang got together, but leaves plenty of room for further adventures with the handsome actors before they turn into theatrical knights.

A fine cast includes Michael Fassbender, whose move from indie hunk (Hunger, Fish Tank) to mainstream hunk has been seamless, the aforementioned McAvoy, Winter’s Bone star Jennifer Lawrence (who I recognised but couldn’t place until the credits rolled), January Jones off of Mad Men (who, as has been pointed out elsewhere, was mainly bra), Nicholas Hoult from Skins, and Jason Flemyng, another Brit who seems to be taken very seriously by Hollywood. Sometimes I wonder if actual American actors feel a bit threatened by the current influx of Brits, going over there, stealing their jobs – and probably their women. (Great to see Michael Ironside as the captain of the US Navy warship charged with firing on the Russians during the Missile Crisis, though.)

Under the aegis of Bryan Singer, it seems that X-Men is one of the more reliable comics franchises. You have to suspend your disbelief a bit – I mean, how come the X-Men could appear out of the sky in a black stealth jet to prevent Russia and America from starting a nuclear war and not get blown out of the sky? – but it present an alternative history that almost hangs together. And of course, in the mutants, it reaches out to nerdy teens everywhere and tells them to be themselves and not be bullied into conforming. Not that they’ll listen.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:22 am

http://levelprosperity.posterous.com/super-8-movie-preview-judy-moody-movie-previe

X-Men: First Class
Short Story:
Sure, there have already been three X-Men films, but ever wonder how all those mutants got their crazy powers and banded together? Well, here you go! This prequel follows the journey of Professor Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Erik Lehnsherr (Michael Fassbender) before they become mortal enemies Professor X and Magneto. As they try to save humanity from the Cuban missile crisis, a clash between friends leads Professor X to partner with the X-Men to fight for good while Magneto and Brotherhood go on a road toward evil.

What They're Saying:
"The result is one of the best Marvel adaptations, packed with action, humor, retro 1960s style that's both campy and sexy, and a revisionist history lesson that puts the X-Men at the center of the Cuban missile crisis." -- Associated Press

"Entertaining enough for a Saturday night, and much more satisfying than the last X-Men offshoot, the woeful Wolverine." -- Boston Globe

Good for the Kids?
With rave reviews and an all-star cast, this is the perfect superhero flick for teenagers and adults to see on a hot summer day! With intense action sequences and a PG-13 rating, it's probably best to leave the little tots at home.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:26 am

http://popspoken.wordpress.com/2011/06/13/movie-review-x-men-first-class/

Movie Review | X-Men: First Class – A Class above the Rest

Posted by mr&mrsravenous on June 13, 2011 ·
Synopsis

The movie begins with a recreation of Bryan Singer’s X-Men (2000) opening scene involving young Magneto a.k.a Erik Lensherr bending a metal gate at a German concentration camp.

No doubt that the original intro was way more emotional (and epic) but I gotta give props to Matthew Vaughn, director of X-Men: First Class, for imitating this part of the motion picture with such precision. It was a Déjà vu moment for most of us in the audience as we were brought back to our childhood period.

Michael Fassbender

X-Men: First Class is set during the dark ages of Cuba, a time when the world came closest to nuclear warfare. Although the movie does set its focus on (secret) historical events, the gist of the story always goes back to Erik Lensherr (Michael Fassbender). Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon), also going under the alias Dr. Schmidt, is the so-called founder and co-creator of Erik’s alter-ego that is Magneto.

After witnessing his mother being shot by Shaw, little Erik (Bill Milner) unleashes the mutant in him by wrecking a lab full of metallic objects. (Shaw then harvests Erik’s power to manipulate metal over the years through painful experiments)

The movie proceeds to the present day of 1962 where Erik seeks Shaw to administer revenge. As his mission progresses, Erik meets Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and as illustrated in the comic books, they become the best of friends.

The new found bromance, together with Charles’ oldest friend Raven a.k.a Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence) and mutant affairs expert Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne), recruit a few other mutants to join their efforts in saving the world, namely Angel (Zoe Kravitz), Banshee (Caleb Landry Jones), Darwin (Edi Gathegi), Hank McCoy a.k.a Beast (Nicholas Hoult) and Cyclops’ older brother Havoc (Lucas Till).

Kevin Bacon as Sebastian Shaw and January Jones as Emma Frost

Erik’s agenda however, stretches out far beyond than just saving the world and having his revenge on Shaw plus his Hellfire Club, consisting of sassy diamond-skinned Emma Frost (January Jones), Riptide (Alex Gonzalez) and Nightcrawler’s biological father named Azazel (Jason Flemyng).

Characters

The main attraction of the cast narrows down to mainly Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy and of course, Michael Fassbender.

Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique and Nicholas Hoult as Beast

Seeing how extraordinary Rebecca Romijn has portrayed Raven/Mystique all this while, I was very much afraid that they might go wrong with the new casting of this character.

Gladly, Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone) makes no mistakes in her performance as Raven/Mystique. Her solid acting and strong physical beauty are a breath of fresh air.

James McAvoy & Michael Fassbender as Charles Xavier & Magneto respectively

James McAvoy (Wanted) sure makes one really cool telepath. His lightheartedness and optimism is that indicative of Professor Charles Xavier. He complements Fassbender really well as he represents a watered down version of Fassbender’s heavily-suave character.

And now, onto the main event. Michael Fassbender (300) as a young Magneto is absolutely brilliant. This German-Irish actor exudes volcanic amounts of charm, class and suaveness. (Even Mr Ravenous was raving about how hot and handsome he is) Fassbender’s strong emotions are perfectly displayed with his powerful acting and robust attitude.

Wardrobe

The costumes and wardrobe, designed by costume designer Sammy Sheldon, are extremely chic.

Director Matthew Vaughn wanted to pay homage to the classic X-Men comics in the sixties. When he hired Sammy, he specifically told her not to include any tight-fitted spandex, leather biking suits or the black outfits which everyone was going to expect. He wanted to stay faithful to the original blue and yellow ballistic nylon concept.

Vaughn also wanted the ladies to wear something less constrictive and more free.

As for Mystique, her wardrobe consists of figure-hugging clothes to flatter her hour-glass silhouette.

Erik and Charles’ wardrobe are lovely as well. The suits are very polished and neat, like those exhibited in The Thomas Crown Affair (1999).

The tailored suits which Fassbender adorns for this film highlights his masculine and classy presence, significant in Magneto’s persona.

The character Emma Frost, famous for being scantily-clad in the comic books, bears some impressive outfits.

Sexy starlet January Jones (Unknown) fills up her apparel quite nicely with her attractive figure. Too bad her anatomy does not make up for the fact that her face can’t seem to move a muscle throughout the movie.

Verdict


Besides the awesome soundtrack (Above: Take That’s Love Love) played during the credits, X-Men: First Class is overall a great hit.

Seeing that Matthew Vaughn has directed two other marvelous films namely, Layer Cake (2004) and Kick-Ass (2010), it is to no surprise that this prequel stands out from the rest of the X-Men installations. What I like about this film is the entire atmosphere encircling it. I am particularly fond of films set back in war periods or the 1960-80s, just like Zack Snyder’s Watchmen.

I am really impressed with how excellent the cinematography and editing are, staying closely grounded to Vaughn’s feel of the ’60s era. With split screen entrances and gratifying close-up shots, the movie sets itself apart from the all the previous X-Men movies, which often take themselves too seriously.

The X-Men references in the movie are humorous and very tongue-in-cheek as well. Any X-Men fan will be delighted to bask in the knowledge of this popular mutant culture. There is even a scene (after Charles Xavier becomes paralysed) where James McAvoy recites “I suppose I am a professor now. Pretty soon I’ll be going bald.”

Be sure to keep a lookout for cameo appearances by two of X-Men’s sexiest mutants. Popspoken’s photographer strongly approves the first cameo and judging by the gasps/squeals in the cinema, we’re sure many others do too.

Rating: 4.5/5
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:33 am

http://lewiscrusade.wordpress.com/2011/06/13/michael-fassbender-doesnt-look-polish-or-jewish/

Michael Fassbender doesn’t look Polish or Jewish
Posted on June 13, 2011 by GodsGadfly

Now, I’m not being racist here, but it’s just a fact. I sat through _X Men First Class_ trying to put my finger on what wasn’t working for me, and I finally realized: “This guy looks more like a Nazi than a Pole or a Jew” [or a Gypsy, as the case may be].

Now, I don’t think I’ve ever read a single _X-Men_ comic book, but I’m familiar with the mythos through pop culture osmosis like any self-respecting Geek, and of course I’ve seen all the recent movies, though this was the first I went to see in the theater, and only because I had a hankering to go to the theater. It was that or _Thor_, and _X-Men First Class_ fit my schedule a bit better.

So, the dude playing Charles Xavier didn’t strike me as a convincing “young Patrick Stewart,” but neither did the dude playing his clone in _Star Trek Nemesis_. But Fassbender, the guy playing Eric “Magneto” Lehnsherr, looks nothing like Sir Ian McKellen, and nothing like a kid who grew up at Auschwitz.

Apparently, the comics have never specifically identified Magneto as either a Jew or a Gypsy, and elements of the characters history suggest both. However, whatever the comic book canon, the movie canon has thus far strongly implied that he’s Jewish. McKellen’s portrayal in the first three films evoked someone who was bitter because of a lifetime of persecution and prejudice, someone who had a deep vulnerability which made him sympathetic.

Now, I’ve seen some awkward comparisons made with this prequel to _Star Wars_, but I’m going to do the same. If Lucas had written the _Star Wars_ prequels properly we should have had no more than 1/2 hour of Anakin-as-a-kid, and everything in Episode 2 should have been Episode 1. Following that analogy, here we have the story of Eric as hero/anti-hero, working closely with Charles. Now, the actors have been rightly praised by many reviews I’ve read for capturing the friendship-about-to-go-south the same way McKellen and Stewart depicted the friendship-gone-bad.

However, if we follow the _Star Wars_ analogy, it’s almost like the persona are shifted. Lucas gave us a young Anakin who was raised in slavery, ripped away from his mother, torn by various divided loyalties, troubled by corruption, etc., a troubled kid thrust by various crises into making some very bad choices when the time came. It was sometimes hard to see how this postmodern sissy teenager driven by angst because the awe-inspiring, evil but generally composed Darth Vader.

Well, this is the reverse. In many ways, the Magneto of “First Class” already is “Darth Vader.” We see him in his vulnerability at Auschwitz. We see him demonstrate his power in a fit of rage at the Nazi researcher who kills his mother just to get him to demonstrate his power (yet he does everything *but* kill the guy who just killed his mom). Next, we see him all grown up, looking physically fit (played by a German-Irish actor), apparently highly educated, able to speak multiple languages fluently, and totally calm, cool and collected about hunting down former Nazis. He callously tortures a Swiss banker, kills some former Nazis in a South American bar, and then goes on a quest for his “White Whale.”

In a role for which physique should be totally unimportant, they went with a big tough guy. We’re talking about a guy who can move huge metal objects with his mind. McKellan’s Magneto is diminutive in stature when not wearing his outfit, but he’s supremely threatening. Comic book characters are all about contrasts: Batman is the World’s Greatest Detective, and his greatest rivals are puzzle-makers and complete lunatics; Superman is the strongest man in the world, and his greatest enemies are either super-geniuses or aliens. Professor X is a bald, crippled telepath, and his greatest nemesis is a Holocaust survivor with a literally magnetic personality.

This guy is supposed to be a “good guy” in the film (though a good guy you know is turning bad), and never once did I feel any empathy towards him the way I felt for McKellen’s older version of the character who *was* the primary villain.

In short, I could see Hayden Christensen’s Anakin Skywalker maturing to be Ian McKellen’s Magneto; I can see Michael Fassbender’s Magneto maturing to be Darth Vader. I cannot see Fassbender’s Magneto maturing to be McKellen’s.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:54 am

http://www.geeky-guide.com/2011/06/movies-x-men-first-class-2011.html

Jun 13, 2011
[Movies] X-Men First Class (2011)
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X-Men: First Class (2011)We live in a weird world where there have been four different movies related to Marvel's X-Men comic book franchise with varying degrees of quality. Not even considering their lack of respect for comic book canon, the movies have only been generally enjoyable with the last two being near disasters for anyone with an actual brain.

This movie was a bit of a sleeper since it sort of popped out of nowhere with little fanfare. Plus the fanfare that initially came with it was pretty bad, if you remember the controversy behind some of its early release promotional posters. Given that this movie remains a Fox production (who are doing their best to hold onto the rights despite the Marvel movie full court press), it lives outside the rest of the Marvel movie universe and the tight little continuity that they've been building in preparation for the Avengers movie.

I guess that sort of fits, given how the X-Men have always been the poster children for every marginalized group and ethnic minority around. They've always been a walking metaphor of diversity and the challenge of oppression based on race or social class in one way or another. However this movie wasn't quite the social pariah it could have been - and that's generally a good thing.

X-Men: First Class is a 2011 superhero action-drama movie directed by Michael Vaughn. It is meant as both a loose prequel to the other X-Men movies while also being a potential reboot of the franchise as well.

We're first introduced to two very different boys. One is Erik Lensherr (Bill Milner), who is a prisoner in a German concentration camp in Poland together with his family. He accidentally demonstrates his latent mutant abilities and catches the interest of Dr. Schmidt (Kevin Bacon). He proceeds to experiment on young Erik in order to unleash the full potential of his powers. On the other side of the world, we have a young Charles Xavier (Laurence Belcher) who encounters the shape-changing Raven (Morgan Lily) in his kitchen. He offers her a new home and ultimately a new life with his absentee family.

Thus the two grow up into very different men who have walked different paths. Charles (James McAvoy) grows up to become an expert on human mutation and on a quest to find others like him in order to better understand them. He is more of the arrogant upper class type in his behaviors and assumptions, something that often irritates his "sister" Raven (Jennifer Lawrence). Erik (Michael Fassbender) on the other hand roams the world trying to assassinate all those who caused him grief as a child.

Their paths eventually collide when Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon) and the members of his Hellfire Club put together a plan to manipulate the world powers to accelerate the potential for conflict in the world. Thus in the period building up to the Cuban Missile Crisis, Charles and Erik find themselves on the same side as they deal with Shaw and his forces.

The movie has gotten some pretty rave reviews since its release, and I can respect and understand what has a lot of people liking the movie so much. Unlike previous X-Men movies, admittedly this one had an actual story that could hold a decent amount of water. While there were some odd kinks here and there (and especially in the final act), for the most part the story nicely wove together historical events with the fictional back story. As much as I generally enjoyed the movie, I still felt it had its share of issues here and there - but we'll get into that a little later.

The bulk of the acting chops definitely got invested in the lovely bromance between Professor X and Magneto. Seriously, I respect McAvoy as an actor and now I feel a little love for Fassbender as well. The two certainly have chemistry on screen - that is, in a completely platonic friends-fated-to-become-enemies kind of way. The story was truly built around these two actors and their efforts to demonstrate just how different each man is from the other. They're meant to be two sides of the same coin and thus fated to never be on the same side. Dare I say star-crossed lovers then? *insert geeky laughter here*

But once you leave the warm and fuzzy field generated by the animal magnetism (I pun) between the two leads, we end up with a whole lot of nothing. The X-babies were pretty much cardboard cutouts and not actual actors except maybe for the interaction between Jenifer Lawrence and Nicholas Hoult as Beast. While I sort of admire the poignant moments they managed to bring to the table, their entire sub-plot felt a little contrived and ultimately unnecessary.

NEW YORK, NY - MAY 25: (L-R) Actors Zoe Kravit...Image by Getty Images via @daylifeThe rest of the mutants felt like whichever characters they could pull out of a hat. Need people who can fly? Let's have Banshee (Caleb Landry Jones) and Angel (Zoë Kravitz). Token black guy? Then let's have Darwin (Edi Gathegi). Miscellaneous flunkies with no other meaningful contribution other than combat? Enter Azazel (Jason Fleming) and Riptide (Álex González). In this regard the movie suffered a lot of the problems of X-3, which brought in too many characters for far too little relevance overall.

Oh, and don't forget token eye-candy Havok (Lucas Till), who pretty much felt like a hula-hooping reject from I Am Number Four.

Of course my disdain for the supporting acting team is best personified by January Jones' horrible depiction of Emma Frost, the White Queen. Instead of the cunning, intelligent and manipulative seductress we've all come to know and love in the comics, we got a plastic doll walking around the various scenes. She had no emotional impact on me as a viewer nor did she seem all that relevant as an antagonist apart from her ability to use up 1/3 of the special effects budget in her pointless diamond form. I'm not even arguing on the level of a comic book purist here, I just don't get what she was supposed to bring to the movie! I've seen Vulcans who have displayed more emotion than she did.

But if you ignore everyone else and just focus on Erik and Charles, then you'll walk away with a pretty amazing story. Then again with the repeatedly blatant metaphor of the two playing chess all the time, you know that the movie is all about them and everyone else involved is nothing more than a pawn. Heck, while I respect Kevin Bacon's unique acting style and what it brought to the table here, he still didn't matter as much as the conflict between these two individuals. And in that regard, I suppose it's fair enough to say that the director succeeded in his attempts to deliver that message.

X-Men: First Class is definitely one of the better X-Men movies out there in terms of story. However it was not too different from the others in terms of how it mangled perfectly good characters in terms of how it presented them on screen. It still gets 4 stupid one-off demonstrations of everyone's mutant abilities out of a possible 5.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:55 am

http://inertia-at-rest.livejournal.com/33994.html

Spoiled Rotten
Someday, I will be a good person, find my purpose in life, and win the lottery.
Kyoya
X-men First Class
James McAvoy plus X-men? I've been a McAvoy fan since he played Leto in the incestfest Children of Dune, and I've been an X-men movie fan, so of course I had to watch First class, which I did yesterday. And I enjoyed it.

First, the good:

Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy (plus Jennifer Lawrence, but I had problems with Mystique, more on that later) made the movie. Michael Fassbender's Magneto was magnificent, menacing in a cool way, and vulnerable. I cheered as he went on his killing spree because I felt he was justified; the people he killed deserved to die. At the same time though, as much I felt he was a hero seeking justice, I also thought that with each kill, he was going over to the dark side, losing his goodness and humanity bit by bit, and that wasn't good for him either. So the movie made him complex - it made the audience root for him, and at the same time, showed how he ended up becoming a villain in the process.

Fassbender seems to get most of the kudos in the reviews I've read, but for me, McAvoy's Charles was the emotional glue that bound almost every major protagonist together. He had chemistry with practically every actor he had scenes with, especially Fassbender and Lawrence. His concern for Erik shone through, which slowed down Magneto's downward spiral and gave the character an opportunity to be seen as more than just a vengeance-seeking vigilante. In addition, I read that McAvoy wanted the young Charles Xavier to be unlike Patrick Stewart's grave, dignified Xavier. In one aspect, he succeeded. He made Charles seem like a typical privileged college guy - the one who tried to hit on girls with a recycled come-on line, who cared for his adopted sister Raven but couldn't really address her concerns, who couldn't see until the last minute that the mutants would be targeted by humans even though the mutants helped save them. He clearly had a lot of growing up to do. But McAvoy also brings a certain dignity to his roles, which I saw in Children of Dune and Atonement. He brought it to First Class too, so despite his smarmy lines to girls, it was easy to imagine that McAvoy's Charles would eventually become Stewart's Professor Xavier. McAvoy's Charles was also very much a teacher; while in the previous movies, Xavier said he would help the mutants, I didn't really see how he helped them. This movie shows why Professor X is considered an very important mentor to the mutants. He did it a little too well, too. There's something deliciously ironic about how Charles was the reason why Magneto became as powerful as he is.

Aside from Erik and Charles, one reason why I really liked the movie was because of Jennifer Lawrence's Mystique. More than her scenes with Hank and Erik, it was her relationship with Charles that I enjoyed watching. From her behavior before she came across Hank, I wasn't sure if she showed sibling/best friend pique in that she was relegated to the sidelines as Charles hit on girls, or if she was in love with him and was jealous. I thought the latter until she reached out to Hank in a clearly romantic way. Whatever the reason, I loved the way Charles and Raven were so close, so that made Raven's choosing to go with Magneto one of the heartbreaking moments of the film. Lawrence also did a good job showing her youth, insecurity, and need for reassurance. She was at times fun and at other times vulnerable. I could take or leave Mystique in the previous films, but First Class made me feel for her.

Other good things were the uncredited cameos. I wondered if Hugh Jackman's Wolverine would show up - after all, he was pretty much immortal - and sure enough, he did! I loved that. Also, when Raven made herself "older," I thought she looked like Rebecca Romijn, but I wasn't sure. A quick internet search later on showed that it was her, so that was great. I love it when actors from previous films make cameos; it makes the films seem connected.

As a fan of Roswell, it was a pleasant surprise to see Brendan Fehr turn up as the communications officer on the American ship at the final battle. I was rather surprised he had such a small role, but at least he had work. And hey, Julia Stiles had a very small role in the Bourne Identity too, and by the time the third movie rolled around, she was second in the credits, after Matt Damon, so one shouldn't knock small roles.

Next, the bad:

Charles and Raven were shown to be so close that they were practically siblings, so it did not seem believable that she went off with Magneto when Charles was just injured. Sure, Charles told her to go, but that was just awful. She - and Magneto for that matter - could have first brought Charles away from that beach and to a hospital before leaving him. It was very callous of them to leave him there at that moment, despite their differences in ideology. Well, I could sort of believe it of Erik because his single-mindedness was apparent throughout the film; it was Charles that brought out his humanity. However, I couldn't believe that a girl who grew up with Charles and was best friends with him for years could do that. They were practically family, and you don't just leave family in the lurch like that, even if you disagree with them or if they failed you in some way. Not to mention, she may have believed in the whole mutants and humans will never get along thing because of her appearance, but Erik was part of the reason why Charles was shot in the back. And he tried foisting all the responsibility on Moira. That should have been a red flag to her that hey, this guy may say things that she believes in, but he's not going to be the kind of leader who'd have her back when push comes to shove, and oh yeah, he just hurt her long time friend and is just going to leave him there, so he's clearly not a good person. One of my favorite bits was at the end, when Erik killed Shaw, he said that he agreed with Shaw, but Shaw killed his mother - I totally understood that. No one in their right mind would side with the person who killed one's mother in an experiment like Shaw did, even if they ultimately shared the same belief. It should have been the same with Raven in the movie - while she shared Magneto's beliefs, she should have also considered Charles more and Magneto's actions towards Charles at that time.

Then there's the chicken and egg dilemma:

I could see how the whole "you should be proud to show who you are" is right and how Charles's "hide yourself to prevent getting mean remarks from others" attitude is also understandable. While one should be proud of who one is, at the same time, Raven was blue. That's a huge thing to swallow for most people; I could see why Charles wanted her to look normal to spare her the grief (considering that she had the means to look normal), because it's very hard to be treated badly by others on a daily basis, and it's also hard to see someone one cares for be ridiculed every day.

However, while whether she should be in her true blue form in public is an issue that could go round in circles, I totally sided with Charles when he told her to put her clothes on. People wear clothes for many reasons. One is because some people are pervs, and having a girl go naked - even if blue - would make the pervs perv on her. The other is because well, not everyone wants to see other people's private parts hanging out. I certainly wouldn't. So while the whole "she should show her true form in public" rings true, I don't think her being blue exempts her from the need to wear clothes.

The food:

I had Serenitea's green apple yakult, which was pretty good, but it's not necessarily something I want to have again. I also had Tater's chicken turkey burger with all the condiments (mayo, mustard, and ketchup), which may have been a mistake because my burger was too tart, and of course, popcorn. I love Tater's popcorn, which is why I prefer to watch movies at Ayala cinemas that have Taters. However, I made a mistake with the popcorn bag size. When I saw the bags at the counter, the regular size looked small and the big size looked just about right. However, when the bag was opened fully and filled up, I realized that the big size was just too big, especially when I also ordered a burger. Sure enough, I didn't finish the popcorn, and today, my jaw hurts from all the popcorn that I ate.

Going back to the movie:

While the whole mutant pride and racial discrimination issue has been done to death, I would like to see another X-men movie with Fassbender and McAvoy. They did the franchise good.

Posted on Jun. 13th, 2011 at 12:07 pm
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:56 am

http://www.kltpzyxm.com/2011/06/the-latest-x-men-adventure-is-indeed-%E2%80%9Cfirst-class%E2%80%9D/

Jun 12
The Latest X-Men Adventure is Indeed “First Class”

Before heading into X-men First Class, I was told be several people that it was the best in the series. I honestly wasn’t sure that I’d like it better than X2, but I can now safely say that I was mistaken. Perhaps slightly clouded by the filmmaking disasters that were X-Men 3 and Wolverine, I feel mostly comfortable in saying the First Class is my favorite of the X-Men films. Read on after the jump to find out more about my thoughts on the film, but be warned. Here there be spoilers.

X-Men First class has marketed itself somewhat vaguely as a reboot of the franchise, but it’s clear now that this effort was only for those who had been soured by the last two theatrical outings in the franchise. First Class opens nearly identically to the original X-Men, with an almost shot-for-shot recreation of a young Erik Lensherr being unceremoniously separated from his parents . It’s almost as if Director Matthew Vaughn and Producer Bryan Singer are saying to the audience, “Remember how good this was? Well, we’re going back here again. Welcome home.” From here, the film takes us along the most humanizing X-Men story yet delivered to the big screen.

The core of the film is undoubtedly the journey of Erik Lensherr. Michael Fassbender’s depiction is full of depth and intrigue. Fassbender’s Lensherr speaks several languages fluently, travels the world, and by adulthood is extraordinarily adept – and deadly – with his powers. Consumed early by revenge, Fassbender gets plenty of chances later in the film to soften Erik Lensherr before ultimately taking him down the road that leads to Magneto, and he does so convincingly. The things that make Magneto the villain in previous installments are given more dimension here, and as the audience it’s easy to believe and even relate to.

Opposite this more human portrayal of Lensherr is an unbelievably likable Charles Xavier, played so charmingly by James McAvoy that I frankly enjoyed him more than I did the amazingly-cast Patrick Stewart in the first three X-Films. McAvoy’s Charles Xavier is warm and friendly, and he’s not bound to the iconic wheelchair in the way that Stewart was. It’s this literal freedom of motion that allow the films’ creators to show Xavier in a light we’ve never seen. He gets plenty of opportunities to show his compassion instead of talk about it. He goes to great lengths on many occasions to help those around him. We see in this film the beginnings of a great leader.

The supporting cast was only relatively interesting to me, and they didn’t hold up as much of the film as the cast of the first three X-films did. These young, wide-eyed new X-cadets all played their roles solidly, with the possible exception of Zoe Kravitz. Only Nicholas Hoult truly stood out for me as Hank Henshaw. Hoult’s Henshaw was downright Clark-Kentish, and nearly had me rooting for this tall skinny kid to put on tights for the next Superman. Kevin Bacon played the role of Nazi-scientist-turned-independent-supervillain Sebastian Shaw perfectly ominously, though ultimately his role was truly secondary to those of Charles and Erik. Shaw’s gallery of villains was largely throw-away. Azazel is the epitome of Darth Maul in that he is both completely exhilarating to watch in combat and completely undeveloped as a character. And January Jones’ Emma Frost was so forgettable that Director Matthew Vaughn appears to have forgotten her entirely during the second half of the film. She shows up again at the end just in time to remind you how insignificant to the plot she actually was.

But ultimately, none of the supporting cast matters here. This is a film about the two most important men in the X-Men universe, and as such, it is a story that is appropriately set against the backdrop of the Cold War between the United States of America and Russia. Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr are propped up as two Super-powered Superpowers, both of whom ultimately want to preserve their own way of life, but are separated ideologically with regard to how best to accomplish that goal. Standing between them is a nuclear threat in Sebastian Shaw, a mutant who can literally absorb and redirect energy – even nuclear energy – to destroy nearly every living thing on Earth if he is allowed to. Much as the Nazis were the last great threat that saw the United States and Russia working together toward a common goal, the ex-Nazi Shaw represents the last time that Xavier and Lensherr will be able to stand side by side. When Shaw is removed from the picture, mutant-kind’s own cold war is afoot, and sides must be chosen.

X-Men First Class has excited me about the X-Franchise in a way that I haven’t been excited in years. Back when Bryan Singer and his writers were working on X2, they discussed plans for a full franchise that involved both sequels featuring the X-team and origin stories for Wolverine and Magneto. When the team signed on to create Superman Returns for Warner Brothers, those plans were left in less-than-capable hands, and the films suffered for it. I’m not sure how much of First Class is Director Matthew Vaughn or how much is Bryan Singer (he produced and wrote the story), or if it’s the combination of the two, but whatever it is, I sincerely hope that they continue with this newly redefined team of X-Men.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 1:59 am

http://preternaturalpost.com/2011/06/12/preternatural-films-a-hit-at-the-box-office-this-weekend/

X-Men: First Class dropped to Number 2 this weekend but the mutants still manged to bring in a respectable $25 million for 20th Century Fox. Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Erik Lehnsherr (Michael Fassbender) are still battling for the minds and powers of the 1962 generation of mutants. In an interesting twist, X-Men: First Class includes the biblical mutant Azazel (Jason Flemyng, whom some will recognize as Danny Quinn from the television series Primeval) who seems drawn from the same legend as Azazeal (played by Michael Fassbender in the BBC television series Hex). X-Men: First Class was produced by Bad Hat Harry Productions and directed by Matthew Vaughn.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:00 am

http://www.filmmattic.com/2011/06/movie-review-x-men-first-class.html

Sunday, June 12, 2011
Movie Review: X-Men First Class
Flying High


First Class is not only synonymous with a classy, comfortable form of air travel (remember that Seinfeld episode?), it's an apt descriptor for Matthew Vaughn's sturdy X-Men movie. And after flying First Class, much like Jerry Seinfeld, I can't go back to coach.

Imagine you’re about to board a commercial flight. No seat assignments have been communicated in advance. Your buttock is flummoxed. You step foot on the aircraft without the faintest idea of where to lower your gluteus maximus. A flight attendant by the name of Matthew Vaughn ushers you to that lovely place, a cushiony contraption replete with luxurious accoutrements befitting a person of high-class comfort and prestige. It’s conveniently nestled in the front section, prime real estate for air travelers, not to mention exquisite panoramas. It turns out that Mr. Vaughn is actually a film director masquerading as a flight attendant/pilot. And to your astonishment, you’re now firmly aboard a marvel-ous flight, destination comic book heaven. So fasten your seat belt, make sure your seat back and folding trays are in their full upright position, and enjoy the ride. Despite the very real threat of nuclear apocalypse, there’s no need for emergency exits; this isn’t The Last Stand. You’re in First Class baby and privy to the best amenities, both visual and emotional. Yes, Fassbender and McAvoy, I would like some more.
Mankind is careening toward nuclear destruction. Post-World War II hostilities are firmly entrenched in world politics, chiefly between the United States and the Soviet Union. The Cold War is mired in an uncertain infancy and the Cuban Missile Crisis marked its first major confrontation. Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Erik Lehnsherr (Michael Fassbender), mutant proprietors possessing unique powers, strike a tenuous alliance. Prior to becoming mortal enemies, Professor X and Magneto lead a powerful team of mutants on a mission to save the planet from nuclear annihilation. Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon), the malevolent mutant antagonist, conspires with Riptide (Alex Gonzalez), Azazel (Jason Flemying), and Emma Frost (January Jones). Hellbent on triggering World War III, and precipitating a bitter war between mutants and humans, Mr. Shaw conceives a doomsday plot; his focal point of provocation is the impending Cuban Missile Crisis.
Charles and Erik launch a counteroffensive, bolstered by an intensive recruitment campaign with the support of Dr. Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne) and the CIA. The two powerful mutant leaders have assembled a crack team that includes Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Banshee (Caleb Landry Jones), Beast (Nicholas Hoult), Angel (Zoe Kravitz), Havok (Lucas Till), and Darwin (Edi Gathegi). In the midst of their morally inspired intervention, however, Charles and Erik clash. The impetus springs from their opposing views on humanity ("fear leads to hatred") and sacrifice. But their festering hostilities (I'm presuming you've all seen the sequels) set the stage for battle; Professor X leads the X-Men in the noble fight for a virtuous co-existence between humans and mutants while Magneto, chief of the Brotherhood, champions chaos and destruction on a global scale.


As the eventual director of X-Men: First Class, Matthew Vaughn inherited one hell of an enormously rushed production. With only a year, and a conglomerate of writers (a six-person script including Jane Goldman), Vaughn's responsibility was daunting. The pertinent question around Hollywood: could Vaughn mastermind a film that combines, not only great action (commensurate with superheroes) with real events, but revives the moribund X-Men franchise, whose remnants from The Last Stand are still keenly felt? The answer is a resounding YES.
Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy are effortlessly charismatic. First Class may be, without hyperbole, the fuel that drives the two to international stardom. Fassbender is magnetic. He is the perfect embodiment of the handsome, suave sophisticate, whose ambitions, dually conflicted, ooze grandiloquence. If Daniel Craig reties his 007 wingtips, Fassbender, as many speculate, is the ideal replacement. McAvoy's supple handsomeness and sharp intensity superbly match the brilliance of Patrick Stewart's sublime performance in the original films. And Kevin's performance is as good as the taste of bacon, only without the grease. He sizzles on the screen. His portrayal of evil, rooted in the brooding, megalomaniacal Sebastian Shaw, is daring and weighty. It teeters on the precipice of over-the-top extravagance, but never actually quite severs the line of believability. Every good movie needs a good villain and Kevin Bacon proves to be every bit of that guy. The creator/monster relationship (among others) between Erik and Shaw represents one of the most dynamic, dually essential character arcs of the story.
Some critics object to the seeming perfunctory build-up of the ancillary characters (not Charles, Erik or Sebastian). But I'm not one of those critics. The formidable ensemble cast, in my opinion, does a terrific job save for one sullen exception, which renders this man (ME), very mad. January Jones, sultry and bosomy, is suggestive of a charismatic black hole. As fierce a beauty as one could imagine, her performance is as ghastly as one could ever hope to realize; it's like rubbernecking at the scene of an accident involving a brand new Mercedes and an old, rundown Honda. Not so pretty anymore, Ms. Mad Men.


First Class maintains the core human dramatics of X2, but far exceeds its vision. While it's not as polished as Singer's sequel, it's much more fun. Vaughn and company interweave established history with comic book mythology (Tarantino-esque ala Inglourious Basterds), intimating a new kind of compelling, albeit fabricated history. As a period piece and origin story, First Class succeeds brilliantly. Undoubtedly, a conscious choice was made to imitate the vintage look and feel of 60's James Bond movies. With feverish pacing, superlative story design, and copious character interactions, Vaughn infuses old-fashioned, globetrotting villains and complex mutants with comic book pathos. The tone is light, but the narrative imprint is lean.
Unfortunately, one of my few gripes with the film is the extreme disavowal of the black civil rights movement. The story's primal focus concerns human injustice (mutants vs. humans), but never alludes to the ongoing discrimination of blacks. Where's the conviction for identity politics, the very same identity crisis that distresses the mutant's cause for equality? If Vaughn and company truly wanted to espouse a message of equality, they shamefully missed the opportunity. Ultimately, the movie's message is undercut by the way the movie behaves, glossing over the more relevant details of discrimination. It's impossible to ignore, but the lack of civil adherence or thematic contradiction (SPOILER: Darwin aka the black guy is the first mutant to die) does not impact my overall enjoyment.
Despite an array of characters and stories, First Class works well cohesively. The dialogue is always charged, occasionally cheesy, and sometimes hilarious (Xavier's drunken schmoozing, anyone?). As the maniacal Kevin Bacon states emphatically, "And we still have the most powerful weapon of all. Me." Shaw's sentiment transitions quite nicely into my next point. The mutant call backs are a little clunky, but the core relationships are wonderful: between Charles and Erik (though a tad dragged on), the budding romance between Mystique and Beast (too cute), and the complex 'brother/sister' relationship between Charles and Mystique. Vaughn does a magnificent job balancing the realistic human dynamics with bold special effects and robust CGI (they don't always work, but it's excusable given the rushed production schedule).
What distinguishes Vaughn's direction from many other rising talents is his unique stylization. His mise-en-scène leaves no doubt to viewers: the cinematic proceedings they are witnessing are the work of a brilliant visionary. The stylized transitions during the mutant training sequence (where they learn how to harness their powers), the Beast transformation scene, Erik's submarine moment (powerful), the opening sequence (awesome) the Erik/Sebastian face-off (AMAZING), and the climactic missile launch sequence are each evidence of synchronized, highly inventive camera work. There are stellar fight sequences (when Azazel infiltrates the secret training facility) that seem genuine and meaningful, not manufactured or perfunctory. How unprepared are the young X-Men against the powers of Sebastian and his mutant minions? Vaughn provides us with these answers without needless exposition or sloppy execution. Conceptually, Vaughn's First Class is authentic and tangible. And Henry Jackman's musical composition is a terrific ally. His sonorous score aides the distinct tonal feel and the ambitious narrative design, even tapping into the sounds of the original cartoon series.


Independence Day may have taught youngsters that July Fourth is all about alien invasion. X-Men: First Class is primed to teach youngsters that, during the Cuban Missile Crisis, superpowered mutants thwarted opprobrious plans for a third World War. But quite strikingly, Vaughn injects the weighty historical backdrop with a more lighthearted idiosyncrasy. Before jumping into the substantial meat of the story, we witness Professor X manifest his powers in cool ways. Without qualms, without morals, Charles womanizes women as if his last name was Sheen. But this self-awareness and fanboy hipness translates First Class' dire historical consequences into pure cinematic gold. The juxtaposition may seem tangential, but it's thoroughly enjoyable.
Before Matthew Vaughn's refreshing arrival to the X-Men franchise, Bryan Singer was the man of the mutants. The defining virtue of Mr. Singer's X-Men movies was the unwieldy tone, a tone that resuscitates memories of James Carville's phrase: "It's the economy, stupid." But the iconic campaign message, in terms of an examination of X-Men, can easily be replaced by: it's the seriousness, stupid. The crown jewel of the franchise, X2 succeeded, because of its serious allegiance to the human condition. Singer's signature oeuvre may have shifted into overkill, but that's why 20th Century Fox hired Matthew Vaughn, a director broadly capable (look at his track record) of implanting a tangible human story within the framework of a cartoonish, comic book mythology. And Mr. Vaughn not only Kick's-Ass, he blasts a game-changing home run into the stratosphere. First Class is not only synonymous with a classy, comfortable form of air travel (remember that Seinfeld episode?), it's an apt descriptor of Matthew Vaughn's sturdy X-Men movie. And after flying First Class, much like Jerry Seinfeld, I can't go back to coach.

8.5 out of 10

Posted by Matthew Vanacore at 9:16 PM
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:00 am

http://frame2interlace.wordpress.com/2011/06/13/x-men-first-class/

X-Men: First Class

The Cast of X-Men: First Class



Matthew Vaughn’s X-Men: First Class is definitely an origin story done right. The writing was well done, including all the explanations one desires, and then incorporating two great back stories for the soon to be Magneto and Professor X. The fact that these men are from two different worlds, one from poverty and the other from unprecedented wealth, really builds on the reality that even though they become close friends (possessing many similarities) they are not going to remain in this fragile utopia they build for the X-men. From the beginning they were destined to represent two different worlds within the same and I was really impressed by how this was captured on the screen.

The editing was great, the score was captivating, and the acting was definitely memorable. I must admit, I walked out of the theatre swooning over Professor X (James McAoy), Magneto (Michael Fassbender), and the sultry Mystique, played by the enigmatic Jennifer Lawrence. These actors were definitely cast in the right role and played them to a tee. I really enjoyed Fassbender’s seamless combination of fury and tranquility, and the fact that he spoke a few different dialects (now that is talent!) Now, what I really hope is that Lawrence does not decide to go on an awful Hollywood induced skinny diet, because she is just luscious and oozes va-va-voom sex appeal. She totally captures that Golden Age Hollywood glamour and can back up her looks with a set of acting chops (hello, nominated for an Academy Award last year?). Ya, these actors are worth every penny.

James McAvoy looking fierce.

Michael Fassbender, looking all suave and what not.

The Delicious Jennifer Lawrence

In Variety‘s review of the film, writer Justin Chang captured my thoughts about Professor X and Magneto perfectly,

“…it’s remarkable how many things “First Class” gets right, whether it’s the decision to have characters speak different languages as the film’s frequent globe-trotting dictates, or the casting of Fassbender and McAvoy, who bear no resemblance to their respective older counterparts (Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart) but perfectly capture Charles and Erik’s symbolic might-vs.-right dynamic.”

C’est vrai!

~ by frame2interlace on June 13, 2011.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:01 am

http://www.360nobs.com/2011/06/x-men-first-class-takes-us-back-to-the-beginning/

360Cinema: X-Men: First Class Connects The Dots…

Written by Mistah Cole // June 13, 2011
X-Men First Class

Starring: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Rose Byrne, Jennifer Lawrence, Kevin Bacon
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Genre: Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

A fair share of people would probably be planning to go see the new X-Men because they believe it will be a continuation of the previous movies in the franchise. Sorry to disappoint folks, but X-Men: First Class neither continues from where X-Men: The Last Stand (2006) ended nor is it related to X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009). Rather than serving as a continuation, it does even better by taking followers of the X-Men movie series back to the very beginning to see how it all began.

This movie is the key to understanding a number of events/happenings in the X-Men movies and while that alone might not be reason enough to go watch it, take this into consideration; X-Men: First Class is a reboot of the movie series meaning every other X-Men movie to come will be linked to this one.

X-Men: First Class starts off in 1944 where we get introduced to Charles Xavier a rich kid who grew up in a huge mansion in New York and Erik Lensherr a victim of the Holocaust who grew up in a German concentration camp. Fast forward to 1962, present day in the movie, Prof. Charles a young Oxford graduate with a “special gift” and interest in mutation, is approached by CIA agent Moira MacTaggert to help convince her superiors in the CIA of the possible existence of a mutant threat to humanity known as Sebastian Shaw. Charles agrees to assist in stopping Shaw and along the line gets to meet Erik Lensherr who has got his own abilities too and an old score to settle with Shaw. Together they form an alliance and recruit some young mutants to help stop Shaw.

Ashley Miller, Zack Stenz and the rest of the crew responsible for the screenplay of this movie did a wonderful job as its plot is on point and connected. When they could have wasted time going around in circles just to look fancy and all, they avoided all that and ended up providing one of the best movies this summer.

This prequel directed by Matthew Vaughn is a lovely one which pulls back the curtain to reveal the origin of the X-men movie series which we’ve been following for years now. The actors in this movie were quite convincing in their roles and trying to find fault in their acting would be futile as they played their roles to the script.

All in all i couldn’t have chosen a better movie to watch at the cinema and though i was a bit disappointed it didn’t really have a fight scene that would make me go Woah!!, it’s alright because i understand its going to have installments coming up soon plus the planned telepathic fight scene had to be scrapped after X-Men: First Class director, Matthew Vaughn, saw the stunts adopted by Christopher Nolan in my beloved Inception (Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Ellen Page).

This is a must watch for comic buffs, lovers of the X-Men franchise and a great movie choice for those that just want to go see a good movie.

iRecommend

Rating: 8/10

*X-Men: First Class is currently showing at cinemas in Nigeria
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:02 am

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Mightier, Smarter, Better Posted: Sat Jun 11 2011, 02:42 hrs

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X-Men: First Class

DIRECTOR: Mathhew Vaughn

CAST: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Kevin Bacon, Rose Byrne, Jennifer Lawrence, January Jones, Nicholas Hoult

Rating: ***

So here it is, the tale of how the mighty-but-flawed X-Men came into being. And let this be said, this is a better film than the previous one in which the X-ers were being very dull indeed.

The beginning is in a concentration camp at the fag end of World War II, where the young Eric Lensherr (Fassbender) comes under the evil gaze of

Dr Schmidt (Bacon). The boy can bend metal to his will, and he finds out just how immense his powers are in the most tragic way imaginable: brought on by the brutal loss of a parent. We then take a leap twenty years hence. The world is in the throes of the chilliest period of the cold war, which culminated in the stand-off between the US and the USSR over the Cuban missiles crisis, and where, famously, the other guy blinked.

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X-Men:First Class melds fact and fiction without too much trouble even though the effort slows the film down, with the inclusion of the documentary clips showing blond American presidents and their speeches about nuclear weapons and keeping the world free. With the help, of course, of a handful of superhero mutants: the Oxford professor who can read minds, Charles Xavier (McAvoy), the inky blue Mystique (Lawrence), the guy who has feet for hands (Hoult), Eric-who-can-can-tame-metal, and a couple of others.

All the mandatory super-power show-offiness is fun enough, as this bunch readies to take on the baddies who want to start World War III. McAvoy gets into his mind-reading act with great relish, and Fassbender has a couple of thrilling scenes all to himself, which gives him an edge. First Class can safely be watched by first-timers, but old faithfuls of the franchise will get a little more, tracing the origins of their favourite characters. A split-second appearance by Hugh Jackman, a star of the previous X-Men, raised a bigger cheer among the audience than anything else that happened in this film, both a testament to the durability of the franchise as well as a promise of more to come.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:04 am

http://shallowgraves.org/?p=393

“Tomorrow, mankind will know that mutants exist.”
Posted on June 12, 2011 by Shallow Graves Admin

I bought my ticket for X-Men: First Class with much trepidation. After the disastrous X-Men: Last Stand and X-Men Origins: Wolverine movies, I felt like a jilted lover wondering if I should trust again. Knowing that Bryan Singer was involved as a producer and Matthew Vaughn, who directed instant favorite Kick-Ass last year, was at the helm coaxed me into checking it out. Michael Fassbender, whom I enjoyed immensely in Tarantino’s Inglourious Basterds and British indie hit Hunger, helped speed things along, and I found myself in a packed, Brooklyn theater anxiously waiting for the movie to start.

X-Men: First Class is set against the background of the Cuban Missile Crisis and tells the story of Professor X and Magneto when they were still Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Erik Lensherr (Michael Fassbender), friends working together to find other mutants and stop Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon) and his Hellfire Club from eradicating humankind. Erik is set on killing Shaw for personal reasons and doesn’t hide his disdain for humans whose bigoted and fearful treatment of mutants reminds him of his painful childhood during the Holocaust. Charles wants merely to stop Shaw and forge a peaceful relationship between mutants and unmutated humans. Their differing ideologies eventually drive a wedge between the two that sets the stage for the ongoing conflict between Magneto’s Brotherhood of Mutants and Professor X’s X-Men.

I did have some problems with the movie. The mistreatment of women in the movie was palpable and often unpleasant, but I believe much of this was an intentional commentary on the treatment of women in the 60s (and today for that matter). Shaw’s interactions with Emma Frost (January Jones) and Angel Salvadore (Zoe Kravitz), Charle’s treatment of Raven (later Mystique portrayed wonderfully by Jennifer Lawrence) and Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne) navigating what is essentially a man’s world at the CIA are clearly intended to make the audience groan about the limitations being placed on them by the men around them.

My concern came with noting the differences between the comic portrayals of the women versus the film. Moira, at one point, goes to Charles because she needs an expert on mutations when she was a Nobel Prize winning geneticist in the comics. Emma Frost is Shaw’s sidekick in the movie but in the comics is a brilliant CEO of Frost Enterprises and has her own affairs to which to attend. They are interesting and somewhat unsettling changes when you compare the film to Thor and note that the women’s roles were changed to allow them a bigger presence in that movie.

The racial issues were more disquieting. There was a conspicuous lack of Civil Rights Movement imagery, Angel was given very little depth, and Riptide doesn’t even merit one line of dialogue. I also inwardly cringed when Shaw, while confronting a group of mutants, mentions slavery and there is an immediate and lingering close-up of the only black man in the movie. It was disappointing especially knowing that the creators of Uncanny X-Men have said many times that they modeled a lot of premise with the Civil Rights Movement in mind going so far as to compare Charles to Martin Luther King Jr. and Magneto, with his uncompromising stance, to Malcolm X. Singer does hope to touch on these issues in the next installment of the series.

Part of what was so jarring about the movie is due to editing. The film was shot very quickly (10 months I believe), and the story was originally supposed to be X-Men Origins: Magneto. But, the script was changed several times and it shows. It was said elsewhere that it felt like watching two movies, Magneto: Origins and awesome 60s X-Men, at the same time. Between that and the constant location changes at the beginning of the film, it could sometimes take you out of the story.



That all said, the movie was fantastic fun! The relationship between Charles and Erik is the “emotional core” of the film and McAvoy and Fassbender make you become so emotionally invested in their friendship that when they eventually part ways you are devastated even though you already know their friendship will fall apart. (And I am a sucker for tragic bromances). It really is these two that keep the movie centered. The exploration of Erik’s life before he became Magneto was great fun and felt rather “international man of intrigue” at times as he searched the globe for Shaw. Watching Charles’s transformation from a somewhat smarmy flirt who expresses casual bigotry toward mutants who cannot hide their mutation (such as Raven/Mystique) into the man that will become the wise and caring Professor X was fascinating. And, enough cannot be said about the wonderful performances from the secondary cast (what a talented group of young people!).

I highly recommend that you see this movie as soon as you can and take some friends with you; you won’t regret it. Also, I dare you to try and come out of it not shaking your fist at the sky and bemoaning the end of Xavier’s and Magneto’s friendship!
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:04 am

http://feuervogel.dreamwidth.org/882399.html

X-Men First Class
Jun. 12th, 2011 05:17 pm
photo of the statue of Victory and her chariot on the Brandenburg Gate
[personal profile] feuervogel
Ben & I went out for dinner and a movie last night (Margaret's and X-Men). We went to dinner a little early, perhaps, but if we'd have gone a little later, the place would have been busy, and we'd have gotten stuck in a torrential downpour on our walk over to the theater.

I really liked the movie, though they just had to kill off the brother early on, and the women got some short-end of the stick (or were pastede on yey). Kevin Bacon can't do accents for s$#!, but the little British kid playing young Erik was quite good. (And the German was grammatical! Holy s$#!!) Also, Michael Fassbender (Erik) is really hot. (And Charles/Erik is so f#%@#&! canon. Their love is so tragic.)

X-Men has always been a blatantly obvious metaphor for how society treats the Other: LGBTQ, racial or ethnic minorities, the disabled, etc. This movie highlights how two people with relatively invisible differences (telepathy and magnetism) from very different social statuses interact with the world. Erik (Magneto) had a second invisible difference: being Jewish.

Xavier is the high socioeconomic status one, with a background made entirely of privilege. He believes (at least initially) that mutants and humans can live together, because they can all just get along.

Erik is a concentration camp survivor, whose background was probably working class at best. He's seen humanity at its worst, and his belief that humans fear mutants is based on his experience. His motivation is revenge, and his power was initially born in fear and rage.

I don't think it's a spoiler to say that Xavier's naive idealism is crushed. His school and its secrecy in future canon is evidence of that.

I wonder if the racefail (all the bad guys on Shaw's team are racial minorities) is a meta commentary on the privileged idealist's perspective in comparison to the disprivileged's perspective. After all, someone who's had experience with being treated like s$#! because they're different on the outside knows just how much bullshit Xavier was spouting. (I doubt the director was being that conscious of it, and it's certainly more likely that they fell on the usual tropes. It's an interesting thought, though.)
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:04 am

http://wickedchannel.com/2011/06/movie-review-x-men-first-class-2011/

X-Men: First ClassDirector: Matthew Vaughn

Cast:
James McAvoy as Professor Charles Xavier
Michael Fassbender as Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto
Jennifer Lawrence as Raven Darkholme / Mystique
Kevin Bacon as Sebastian Shaw
Rose Byrne as Dr. Moira MacTaggert
January Jones as Emma Frost
Nicholas Hoult as Hank McCoy / Beast
Jason Flemyng as Azazel
Zoë Kravitz as Angel Salvadore
Lucas Till as Alex Summers / Havok
Morgan Lily as Young Raven Darkholme / Young Mystique
Oliver Platt as Man in Black
Edi Gathegi as Armando Muñoz / Darwin
Ray Wise as Secretary of State of the United States
Bill Milner as Young Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto
Caleb Landry Jones as Sean Cassidy / Banshee
Álex González as Janos Quested / Riptide
Demetri Goritsas as Levene
Laurence Belcher as Young Charles Xavier

Story:
In 1962, at the height of the Cold War, two men from different backgrounds pool their resources to bring attention to the plight of those with genetic mutations, some that give them extraordinary powers, others that make them look different. Professor Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) is an academic in genetic mutations, while Erik Lehnsherr (Mike Fassbender) is a Holocaust survivor bent on getting revenge against those responsible for his parents’ death in the concentration camps. In particular, he’s after Klaus Schmidt (Kevin Bacon) who years later has turned up as a wealthy power broker known as Sebastian Shaw, who has become involved with playing both sides of the conflict between the United States and the Soviets.

Enjoying an X-Men film seems to be taboo, but I have been a fan of the previous X-Men movies for what they were. I was excited going into X-Men: First Class. You had Bryan Singer coming back to the franchise and producing the film while bringing in Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass) to direct. Together, they have created a movie that fits well into the context of the other films which brings us a very satisfying sequel.

I have always been a fan of superhero origins, and while this film did not really deal much with the origins o the heroes themselves, they did deal with the creation of the X-Men as a whole and especially dealt with the relationship of Erik Lehnsherr (Magneto) and Professor Charles Xavier. The dynamic between both of them was spot on from the outset of the film to the eventual turn of Magneto. The casting was done perfectly for those roles. They could not have done much better than having James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender playing the roles made famous by Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen.

Two of my favorite comic book characters were in this movie, which made me extremely happy. I have always been a huge Mystique fan and especially an Emma Frost fan. Jennifer Lawrence as Raven Darkholme aka Mystique was another great casting job. To see Raven come into her own in this film was a nice treat. And, as far as looks go, January Jones was a splendid choice for Emma Frost. Let’s face it, Emma Frost is smoking hot and January Jones is as well. Outside of the look though, I would have loved to see a little more done with Emma.

Surprisingly, the most questionable part of the casting was Kevin Bacon as Sebastian Shaw. He was not exactly reminiscent of the Sebastian Shaw from the comic books. Kevin Bacon seemed somewhat our of his element with his character and performance in this one.

Now, actually on to the film. I was extremely satisfied with how it turned out. The story was handled well and the action scenes were exceptional in most all of the instances. The film remainded very character driven and with such a diverse cast of heroes and villians, there were endless scenarios played out throughout the film. The action scenes gave the film that epic feeling that we were hoping from in this film.

I know that a lot of people are checking this one out with reservations, but you should not hesitate on catching X-Men: First Class. It is an action-packed Marvel superhero film with an abundance of action and exceptional characters. I think that most people will be pleasantly surprised once they see this one.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:05 am

http://www.jeffandwill.com/2011/06/12/x-men-first-class/

X-Men: First Class
Posted by Jeff in Movies

After a disappointing X-Men: The Last Stand in 2006 its taken four years for the franchise to put itself back together again (I don’t count X-Men Origins: Wolverine as truly part of the franchise because of its limited scope). X-Men: First Class doesn’t live up to the high standard set by X2, but it is still a quite satisfying film and hopefully a solid reboot for the mutants.

The film starts during World War II. We find the man who will become Magneto in a concentration camp while the future Professor X discovers Mystique in his kitchen looking for food. Jump forward a couple decades and Erik, Charles and Raven are working with the CIA to stop super baddie mutant (and the man who essentially made Erik into Magento) Sebastian Shaw. Shaw wants to start World War III by escalating the Cuban Missile Crisis. The idea is that mutants will rise in the place of humans.

Watching the origins of Professor X, Magneto, Mystique was cool, and heartbreaking. These three started as friends and, as we all know, ended up on opposite sides of the battle. We also get to see how Hank McCoy fully became Beast (this was a much more satisfying Beast than the one Kelsey Grammar played in Last Stand). Also seen were mutants who were in Professor X’s first training program: Banshee, Darwin, Havok.

James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender did a great job of stepping into the younger versions of Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen. Nicholas Hoult was a welcome find in the role of Hank McCoy/Beast. The chemistry between him and Jennifer Lawrence’s Mystique was excellent.

The movie certainly continues the allegory of the mutants representing any repressed race. Professor X, even in his mid-20s, wanted to assimilate and help society. Magneto was more content to force things to be his way.

If the X-Men series continues, I’d like to see more stories told in these early days of the Professor X’s school. I think these would be the best sort of origin stories. Movies like the Wolverine one, while entertaining, end up with a too constrained focus. Let’s keep seeing movies with more of the full X-men team.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:06 am

http://pnabarro.wordpress.com/2011/06/12/x-men-first-class/

X-Men: First Class
June 12, 2011
by pjnabarro

X-Men: First Class (2011)
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Actors: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Kevin Bacon

I’ve never been the biggest fan of the X-Men movie franchise. Of course, it will ultimately be judged on its profitability and crowd-pleasing exploits, but I’ve always found it hard to take the series’ po-faced ‘mutant’ politicking seriously, when it conflates cartoonish supernatural abilities (being able to breath fire, fly, turn blue etc) with disability/civil rights rhetoric. The only saving grace of the previous movies was the gravitas casting of Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen in the lead roles, and much like in those movies where the minor mutant characters failed to make much of an impact, in X-Men: First Class the drama only gains frisson when the younger versions of Professor X and Magneto, James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender, take centre stage. Unlike some commentators, I actually think McAvoy gives the better performance here – I know Fassbender has already amassed an impressive CV with memorable roles in Hunger and Fish Tank, but he never quite hits the right note, marred somewhat by the weak fleshing out of his character’s Nazi-chasing motives (was Kevin Bacon really the best casting as an evil ex-Nazi?!), and bizarrely by the end of the film, Fassbender’s character seems to have acquired his own native Irish accent. Nitpicking aside, X-Men: First Class just about merits a watch as one of the better summer popcorn spectacles around, though whether it’s earned a run as a new ‘young’ X-Men franchise will ultimately depend on the numbers. (June 2011)
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:08 am

http://nicksmoviereviews.com/xmen-first-class-2011/

Posted on Jun 12, 2011 by Nick DeNitto
X:Men: First Class (2011)

The X-Men franchise looks to redeem itself this summer with the release of X:Men: First Class. After a dreadful display with X:Men Origins: Wolverine, many felt as though the series had run it’s course. So naturally, a reboot (of sorts) was in order. First Class is not technically a reboot (it’s actually a prequel), but considering there are no returning actors and much of the content ignores the events of the previous films, that is essentially what it is. Regardless of where First Class fits in to the canon of the franchise, it is a welcome return to something the previous installment was severely lacking: entertainment.

First Class is an exploration of the origins of some of the primary characters in the X:Men franchise. Metal-bending Erik Lehnsherr (Michael Fassbender) is a holocaust survivor hell bent on getting revenge against the Nazi officers that killed his mother. It is in his pursuit of the evil Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon) that Erik is saved by Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), a telepath who has been recruited by the CIA to investigate recent mutant activity. The two join forces and gather a team of young mutants to combat Shaw, and his plans to unleash World War III at the height of the Cold War.

For the summer, First Class is a satisfactory action film. The special effects are impressive and the fight scenes are incredibly well choreographed. One specific scene involving Erik, two retired Nazi officers, and a knife will particularly stick in my head for years to come. Director Matthew Vaughn (who made the recent mess that was Kick-Ass) does an exceptional job staging these sequences.After a rocky first few scenes which had no flow and were difficult to watch, Vaughn (and his editor) got his act together and produced a film that was easy and enjoyable to watch. The violence was intense without being too graphic, and there is even a case of the F-bomb being dropped, making this probably the most grown up film in the series.

The best performance to be found in First Class is relative unknown Michael Fassbender as the pre-Magneto Erik Lehnsherr. After showing incredible talent in his one scene in Inglourious Basterds, Fassbender was bound to do great things in film. It is here as the revenge-driven Erik that he will probably find a springboard into more roles. Filling the shoes of Ian McKellan is a daunting task, but Fassbender enters the role ready to accept the challenge. His character is the most exciting to watch, and his performance is a big reason for that. James McAvoy is really good as the pre-wheelchair bound Professor X, bringing new life and vitality to a character that was pretty humdrum throughout the franchise. The rest of the cast, however, leaves much to be desired. Most of the young mutants are unimpressive and their performances are interchangeable. Most disappointing is recent Oscar nominee Jennifer Lawrence as the shape shifting Mystique, who never really captured the inner turmoil that the role called for. Kevin Bacon clearly just shows up for the paycheck in his role as the villain, and January Jones (AMC’s “Mad Men”) is bland as his right hand mutant. The only secondary actor to show any real desire to be there is Nicholas Hoult, who plays Hank McCoy aka Beast. The turmoil that Lawrence should have found in Mystique, Hoult certainly finds in Beast.

There is a glaring weak spot in First Class, and that is the script. First, if you are to judge this film as a direct prequel to the previous four, you will find some obvious continuity flaws. One of the least “spoiler”-ish of these being Emma Frost appearing here as a 30-something year old villain, whereas she appeared in Wolverine as a 20 year old being saved by Professor X. But I believe that all films should be based solely on what they are, and not what audiences think they should be. That being said, First Class is poorly written. The dialogue is trite and the message of “mutant and proud” is downright annoying (especially since they repeat the line about 10 times throughout the film). It’s been rather obvious that the X:Men films have been an allegory for homosexuality since X2 when one character essentially “comes out” to his parents, to which they reply with the cliche “parents in denial” response, “have you ever tried not being a mutant?” However, this “mutant and proud” business is a bit too much to handle. Even if it is just referring to being different in any way, it still feels as though the point is being battered into your head.

First Class is 132 minutes long, but if you can overlook that writing, it doesn’t feel that way. This film is a far cry from X2, but is a monumental improvement over the abomination that was Wolverine. If anything, go see it so Fassbender can become a popular name.
My Rating: (7/10)
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:09 am

http://fablog.fromabrick.com/f-u-c-views/movie-reviews-by-f-u-c/x-men-first-class/

Jun
12
X-Men : First Class

Director: Matthew Vaughn
Lead Actors: James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender

Plot Summary (IMDb) :
Before Charles Xavier and Erik Lensherr took the names Professor X and Magneto, they were two young men discovering their powers for the first time. Before they were archenemies, they were closest of friends, working together, with other Mutants (some familiar, some new), to stop the greatest threat the world has ever known. In the process, a rift between them opened, which began the eternal war between Magneto’s Brotherhood and Professor X’s X-MEN.

F.U.C Insights:

X-Men : First Class was truly first class. The greatness of the movie supported the movie’s subtitle. Growing up, I was a huge fan of Marvel Comics, especially Spiderman and X-Men. As I remember, X-Men First Class was actually composed of Cyclops, Jean Grey, Beast, Iceman and Angel, who later on turned Archangel. So technically, the movie got 1 1/2 of the characters correct with just the name of Angel included. Nevertheless, I really liked the movie even if they “again” changed the story.

I heard they were rebooting the X-Men movie franchise and this First Class movie was a pretty good start. I really didn’t like how they transformed the story of the previous X-Men Trilogy. Hopefully for this reboot version, they will produce an even better franchise even for some story tweaking. This will be a big challenge to Director Matthew Vaughn and James McAvoy – if he’s to get bald. Smile Still, First Class was a first start. Kudos to Director Vaughn.

James McAvoy as Professor Charles Xavier was terrific. I wasn’t really a fan from the beginning since I grew up seeing Professor X with no hair but McAvoy outdid himself. I think he was turning to be a really good actor. I first saw him in a lead role in Wanted and he did good. In this movie, he did really well. He showed versatility in his acting as he brought life to a typical Professor X fight scene. His co-star in this movie, Michael Fassbender as Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto was terrific as well. Their characters which turned out to be a bromance was really great. Fassbender was a good drama actor himself. Unlike McAvoy’s character, his Magneto character showed physical and telekinetic(magnetic) action scenes and to his credit, he did a good job in both. His only downfall was when he finally wore the Magneto costume, he looked very lousy. Versatility was the key for both lead actors. Individually, I think they can cut the movie in half (for each character) and still deliver two good movies but as a duo, they made X-Men: First Class exceptional. Oh and did anyone notice McAvoy’s and Fassbender’s acting accents? Brilliant.

Veteran actors in Kevin Bacon as Sebastian Shaw and Rose Byrne as Moira MacTaggert didn’t hold up as well. I think their addition to the movie was really great. Bacon was a true great actor and we can’t argue about it and I think he was very believable in X-Men: First Class. His character’s transformation throughout the movie was amazing. Byrne did good with her character as well. She was skinny hot in her lingerie scene but I think what really worked best was her acting. I think it saved her skinny lingerie. Smile

Since I’m already in the “hotness” topic, I’d like to special mention January Jones as Emma Frost. She was crystal hot. And I can’t stop myself from mentioning she was very hot. I’m sorry to say that I was very distracted by her hotness that I didn’t notice much of her acting. ;D Did I mention, she was super hot in this white lingerie/costume? The rest of the supporting casts and characters were great as well. Jennifer Lawrence as Raven/Mystique did good. She acted well with special effects. I wonder if she was also nude under those blue body make-up. I was just a little confused of her character’s maturity, though. But ultimately, she was a young hot Mystique. Nicholas Hoult as Hank McCoy/Beast was also great in his own. As the lone original X-Men First class character, he did justification with Beast’s character. I didn’t like how they fast forwarded his mutation into a blue beast but I think he starred well enough yet didn’t overpower the leads. It was also good that they gave Caleb Landry Jones as Sean Cassidy/Banshee and Lucas Till as Alex Summers/Havok their own air fight scene against Zoë Kravitz as Angel Salvadore. I think it was the best fight scene of the movie. I remember Banshee had an accent and Caleb did a good job with it. I really do not know how they will continue this X-Men story with introducing Havok before Cyclops but to Lucas’ credit, he was good and believable especially when he acted with the effects. I do not know if the Angel character should be included in this first class movie since I just found out her character in the New X-Men comics. Unfortunately for Edi Gathegi as Armando Muñoz/Darwin. I think for the group of the young mutants, he had the best and most awesome power but with an alias like Darwin, I wasn’t surprise he turned out to be a casualty. I actually thought he was acting really good. Two characters that were ultimately JUST acting were Álex González as Janos Quested/Riptide and Jason Flemyng as Azazel. Both were given less to no dialog at all. But to their credit, both were really great acting with special effects.

To any X-Men franchise movie, special effects was really not a problem. The CG effects were really exceptional. From each individual mutant powers like Mystique’s shape-shifting and Havok’s blasts to Magneto’s flying bullets control to the floating submarine off the ocean, everything was greatly detailed. And to spice it up, the scoring for each powers were really terrific. The sound effects coordinated well with the visual effects that it made all special effects very believable even for Professor X’s telepathy.

Actually, I asked other people’s opinion of the movie. Some said they liked it, as I did, while others said they didn’t like it. They didn’t like the movie because it was dragging and there were really lame and few fight scenes. Truly, the movie was really dragging and there were really few action fight scenes. But to the movie’s defense, the movie’s dragging story was really fine. It helped tell the story of the beginning of the children of the atom. I think they felt the drag since more than half of the movie were divided to tell the story of Professor X and Magneto. I think it helped to translate the bizarre relationship between the two. It also helped make a strong backgrounder for the eventual ending of the movie. And the individual stories of the rest of the characters added up to the length of the story. Although I wouldn’t treat them negatively also since they also helped in establishing the strength and value of each characters. And to defend the loss of action fight scenes, what could we expect in a movie with Professor X and Magneto as the lead characters? Its a fight between face action acting and very few hand gestures. And to McAvoy’s and Fassbender’s credit, I think they made some believable fight scenes between them. I would also like to defend the movie for using a slight copy of their original comics costume. For me the costumes were in between being corny and cool.

And as I mentioned earlier, I wasn’t much of a fan of tweaking the original story too much. But for this movie, I would let it slip. I think they actually made the story better, (but my advice to the director and writers) just include Cyclops and the rest of the original First Class in the loop to keep die hard fans intact. Overall, I give the movie a 4.9 out of 5 rating. This was pretty much influenced by the story tweaking and the very lame closing billboard but nevertheless, I liked it.

Some would say otherwise… but this is my blog anyway.
F.U.C (From.Unprofessional.Critic)
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:10 am

http://www.giantsizegeek.com/2011/06/x-men-first-class-movie-review-cool.html

Sunday, June 12, 2011
X-Men First Class Movie Review: Inglorious Mutants!

Just dug the far-out new groovy mutant movie, X-Men First Class! On one hand, I loved it, mainly because of the 1960s era setting. The sets (inspired by many classic films) and time period were very cool and it had some of the best actions scenes out of all the X-Men movies to date. James McAvoy as young Professor Xavier and Michael Fassbender as young Magneto brought extra dimension to each character. It was wonderful to see some of the mythology that Chris Claremont had developed in this movie. I loved the cameos, especially the one in the middle with the curse word that helped attain the PG-13 rating. Seeing Alex Summers was great and his costume with the circles on the chest was a throwback to Neal Adams’ early design. No idea who Azazel was until this movie, but I see that he was created by Chuck Austen to be Nightcrawler’s father. The Banshee was a riot and I got a kick out of seeing how his screaming power enables him to fly.

The one big casting downer was January Jones as the White Queen. Dammit, the White Queen needs to be played by a woman from the UK, there’s no way around it! Rosamund Pike would have been perfect, but I guess she must have been busy? I also didn’t like how the White Queen is subservient to Sebastian Shaw. Getting him ice for his drink? No effing way.

A lot of people are talking about Jennifer Lawrence like she’s the next big actress, but I found her to be wooden in a number of scenes.

SPOILERS from here on out.

A number of problems with this movie:

Xavier lived with Mystique for 20 years and never had any attraction for her? Not even when she morphed into Angie Dickinson? Come on.
Rose Byrne (as Moira MacTaggert) sees a Hellfire Club meeting in Vegas and decides to strip down to her underwear and infiltrate? Pretty nice lingerie she happened to be wearing too, with garter belts and everything.
Why is Rose Byrne’s character even called Moira MacTaggert if she’s not a scientist? They tried to play off a romance between her and Charles but either it didn’t work or was left on the cutting room floor.
Darwin’s death—they chose the wrong X-Man. Darwin can survive the naked vacuum of outer space for crying out loud, he could have digested that energy cocktail! Cool effect on his skin surface though.
The Beast isn’t attracted to Mystique? Come on. She beats the heck out of Vera any day.
The Beast’s transformation: how come they didn’t show it all? Less is more sometimes but this would have been great to see.
How did the Beast get to the airplane hanger? You mean he can drive a car with those giant furry paws?
When you finally see The Beast he looks pretty dorky in the airplane hangar, wearing those horn rimmed glasses.
The X-Men were in a real terrible situation on the island at the end. Magneto very intelligently found a way out of there. But what about Xavier’s crew? They needed to hightail it out of there fast, but it was never explained how. Professor X has to keep his students safely hidden, but he would have needed urgent medical attention and I can’t see any way but for the military to pick them up. Did Xavier mind wipe every military person who picked them up?
The lowest blow comes from Professor Xavier mind-wiping Moira at the end. That is really destroys whatever they were trying to create between humans and mutants, let alone the trust developed between the two characters. Moira did a lot to help out Charles and she gets rewarded by losing months of her memory?
It’s not exactly the feel-good ending of the year is it? A downer ending and yet Magneto picks up your spirits a bit in the very last scene.


Despite all this, still a good popcorn flick and I love it for the 60s references alone. While it doesn’t really tie directly into any early 60s X-Men stories, it was neat to see a comic book film set in the time period the characters originated. Michael Fassbender as Magento really makes it worthwhile, especially the first third of the movie where he hunts down retired Nazis. Now here is a film I wish could be made: take Michael Fassbender and put him in a Magneto movie written by Quentin Tarentino where he assembles a team of mutants to take out evil humans around the globe. A mutant version of Inglorious Basterds. Nuff Said!
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:12 am

http://www.aplacetohangyourcape.com/2011/06/x-men-first-class-review.html

Sunday, June 12, 2011
X-Men: First Class: Rise of the Anti-Hero
Forget everything you thought you knew about the X-Men and superhero movies. X-Men: First Class has blown away audiences around the world and it’s only just getting started.

Warning: The following review contains spoilers. Read at your own risk if you have not already seen X-Men: First Class.

First Class is not a typical Superhero Film by any means. In part, this is due to the fact that it is about a team of heroes instead of a singular Hero. There isn’t one character who stands out as the main Hero, making it difficult to assign other roles as well. Because of this, it quickly becomes hard to classify the film within the Superhero Genre. With some teasing and tweaking, one can fit the film’s plot into the schema of origin films I laid out before. But there is so much more going on in the film. My impression was that director Matthew Vaughn was essentially including these familiar elements that we’ve come to expect exactly because we’ve come to expect them. It is obvious from Kick-Ass that Vaughn knows his way around the superhero tropes. But right off the bat, he throws out the book and does the one thing no one has done before in a Superhero Film: he makes it all about the Villain.

Some people have forgotten that X-Men: First Class actually began life as X-Men Origins: Magneto, a film centered around the X-Men’s most fearsome Villain. Somewhere in the development process it was decided that it would be better to focus on the early days of all the X-Men and the Magneto film was scrapped. However, Erik Lensherr/Magneto (Michael Fassbender) still managed to be the central character of X-Men: First Class.
And so, First Class becomes something of a Super Anti-Hero Film, with Magneto as the main Anti-Hero, Raven/Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence) as the Anti-Damsel, and Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) as the Anti-Mentor. Magneto has a more violent agenda than most Heroes, and he is permitted to cross the line of killing. His journey to ultimately become a Villain is the one that we become more invested in.


One of the reasons that Magneto becomes the lead character is that he is fueled by passion and emotion, while Xavier is portrayed as much more cold and calculating. Xavier sees much of what happens in the film from a scientist’s perspective, and ultimately that becomes his main motivation. He wants to know whether Banshee can achieve supersonic flight or if Havok is capable of focusing his energy blasts and treats the characters like test subjects in an experiment. This comes to a head (quite literally) in the scene where Erik asks Xavier to shoot him as a way of testing his powers. However, Xavier already knows Erik can stop the bullet, so the experiment is worthless. But challenging Erik to move the satellite dish is much more interesting than him. And yet, that same scene seems to suggest that Xavier feels emotions best when he is taking them from other people’s minds.
Logic vs. Passion
On the other hand, Magneto approaches everything without thinking, rushing into situations where he is out of his depth and trusting that his emotions will make him strong enough to survive. His powers become bound to his emotions, forcing him to always be bubbling at the surface. His murder of Shaw is the final demonstration that he will always favor emotions over logic; while he agrees with Shaw’s ideas, the fact that Shaw killed Erik’s mother will always be the most important thing to Erik. In a typical Superhero Film, the Hero is the passionate character while the Villain is more logically minded. This reversal solidifies Magneto’s status as the central character; the audience will always root for passion over logic.
Mystique’s character becomes more complicated in this film than perhaps any other iteration of the character. She starts off being ashamed of her natural appearance and abilities, but we soon realize that it is Charles, her “brother”, who is ashamed. Her journey consists of moving from self-loathing to self-loving. At the same time, it provides an insight into Xavier’s mind: does he look down on physical mutations? Is he even more of an elitist as Magneto? Forcing Mystique to hide her form is the reason Charles loses her to Magneto in the end, and we see that Magneto is the one who is truly more accepting. This is yet another moment that endears Magneto to the audience and turns him into the Anti-Hero of the piece.
Raven/Mystique
In her role as the Damsel (or Anti-Damsel), Mystique acts as a link to the rest of mutant-kind. She reminds both Erik and Charles of the other mutants in the world who are ashamed of their powers, reminding them that they are fighting for the rights of those mutants. For Charles, she represents the mutants who need help, the ones who he will seek out and merge into society. To Magneto, she represents the truth that humans will never accept mutants, for if even Xavier cannot accept the blue monster that is Mystique, then what hope is there that humanity will? Her inclusion in the film is essential so that both of these views can be portrayed.
By choosing to focus on the Villain instead of the Hero, X-Men: First Class provides a unique twist on the characters of Superhero Genre. With last month’s Thor successfully playing with plot conventions, it seems that Marvel may be attempting to push through a new generation of Superhero Films to usher in the new decade. Whether or not this is true remains to be seen, but one can always hope.
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:12 am

http://articleonline.org/2011/06/12/watch-x-men-first-class-online-browse-my-motion-picture-evaluation-of-this-new-film.html

Watch X Men First Class Online: Browse My Motion Picture Evaluation Of This New Film

12 Jun, 2011 Business

Watch X Men First Class online is what a lot of people are saying to their associates who want to check out a movie that will involve higher superior action.

Kevin Bacon like a mutant Nazi! Rose Byrne in her pants! Nicolas Hoult executed up like Sully from Monsters, Inc! And these aren’t even the best elements about Matthew Vaughn’s vibrant, sprawling, ensemble origin story (perfectly, possibly the Bacon bits…).

A franchise reboot reminiscent of JJ Abrams’ 2009 Star Trek overhaul, this is the fifth film with the X Men canon as well as if it can’t pretty match Bryan Singer’s X2 (among the best of its kind), First Class continues to be rapidly, fresh and exciting.

It truly is intelligent and emotionally resonant, explosive and eye-dazzling. Factor in the zeitgeisty, hot-list cast and First Class is very likely to get among the summer’s best biggies. It sure as hell razes Brett Ratner’s disappointing X Men: The Very last Stand (which Vaughn was slated for at 1 point) and Gavin Hood’s time-waster Wolverine.

Poland, 1944: a youthful Erik Lehnsherr is separated from his parents in a very focus camp; meanwhile, in an affluent but isolated stately property in Ny a youthful Charles Xavier happens on an odd blue very little lady who’s ready to disguise herself as other people.

Eighteen ages later, Erik (Michael Fassbender) and Charles (James McAvoy) have matured into effective, charismatic adult males with opposing agendas.

Their paths cross while in the pursuit of previous Nazi Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon), a ruthless mutant supremacist plotting to use the Cuban Missile crisis to provoke a war amongst people.

Substantial globe-trotting (Argentina, Russia, America, Switzerland, Poland, the uk) inside of a Cold War context lend this the feel of the ’60s espionager.

But at heart To begin with Class is definitely the story of how close pals turn out to be bitter enemies and of how Charles and Erik come to be Professor X and Magneto.

Heard this an individual previous to? No matter whether it is Clark Kent and Lex Luther or Peter Parker and Harry Osborn, the ‘frenemies’ angle is really a well-worn superhero staple. But sturdy, sympathetic performances and bromantic chemistry among dashing, hazardous Erik and compassionate humanist Charles inject new heft.

An early scene sees Erik in an Argentinian bar toasting then torturing two Nazi associates of Shaw by using a single-minded menace reminiscent of Inglourious Basterds’ opener.

Yet the sequence happens before he is ever before satisfied Charles, plus the chance of redemption that this relationship brings is all the more impacting when played to its conclusion.

Dramatic irony functions significantly less from the favour on the Cold War plot, but the elegant creation design and style – the sleazy, hot Hellfire Club, the yachts, submarines and covert military bases conjure a James Bond glamour.

Meanwhile, the sea battle that crescendos the action doesn’t fail to thrill.

As for that supporting cast… it seems much like the Six Degrees Of Kevin Bacon game just received an entire good deal much easier. Jennifer Lawrence (Oscar-nommed, just snagged the lead with the Hunger Games) provides vulnerability and Winter’s Bone stoicism to shape-shifting future-Mystique, Raven, although Nicholas Hoult (BAFTA-nommed, the lead in Singer’s following movie Jack The Large Killer) adds sensitivity then rage to brainbox-turned-Beast Hank.

Caleb Landry Jones (stand-out while in the Last Exorcism) supplies humour as gobby baby-Banshee Sean Cassidy, and Zo? Kravitz (daughter of Lenny, star of festival hit Yelling In the Sky) gives the winged Angel Salvadore a hard-faced worldliness.

Her intro is really a highlight too, which has a pissed-up Erik and Charles checking her out in a very strip joint.

Strangely, it truly is the mutant enemies who come to feel underplayed.

Vaughn regular Jason Flemyng’s devilish Azazel, weather-bothering Riptide (Alex Gonzalez) as well as Mad Men sizzler January Jones as icy Emma Frost are denied a backstory – and with the scenario of Flemyng and Gonzalez any true dialogue.

Thank God for scene-stealing, scheming, chocolate-munching, sociopath Shaw. Bacon may make effortless a larger-than-life part that evolves from guffawing Nazi sadist to slick Bondian baddie.

There is certainly many ground to cover to provide the gang an opportunity to stretch their legs (wings, feet, etc), but thankfully Jane Goldman’s restricted script and Vaughn’s zip and pacing (abundant in his fantastic anti-superhero Kick-Ass, where he also teamed with Goldman) necessarily mean the balance amongst big set-pieces and character enterprise is deftly held.

If To begin with Class isn’t going to rather obtain the anarchy and irreverence of Kick-Ass it is really partly due to the fact this is an unique beast – not missing in charm and wit, but occasionally in risk of veering towards broader laughs.

This is not a person for tots, nevertheless – carrying a similar 12A rating as the Dark Knight, it mirrors Christopher Nolan’s unwillingness to shy from scenes of cruelty as well bleak for infants.

“Mutant and proud!” asserts a naked, blue Jennifer Lawrence, in the closest X Men: Initially Class will get to a catchphrase. She might be referring to Vaughn’s film, which normally requires DNA from Singer (back again while in the fold as producer) and Marvel and mixes it with Bond and Batman, bromance and coming-of-age angst to build a neat, character-driven actioner using a social conscience that is anything to be happy with. Top rated class.

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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:14 am

http://theblackboxoffice.com/2011/06/review-x-men-first-class/

REVIEW: X-MEN FIRST CLASS

Posted by blackboxoffice

REVIEW: “X-Men: First Class”. 2011, 20th Century Fox.

Americans, in the absence of their own ancient mythology unlike the Indians, Chinese or Europeans, have developed a national mythology of a different kind where instead of gods and goddesses, they have their Anakin Skywalker, Darth Vader and Superman. “X-Men – First Class”, with its near perfect script, apt direction and some breathtaking visual effects, firmly enforces another mythological universe to this – those of the mutants.

Much before Professor X (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) fought at the opposite end of the fragile war and peace with inferior humans, they were best of friends, fighting for the good of humanity and mutants alike, in a world that did not know mutants existed.

When a powerful mutant threatens the world, the two working together develop a difference of perspective that will pit them against each other.

The film’s focus is on Erik Lensherr or Magneto, beginning with the same scene that the first “X-Men” opened to in a concentration camp. It moves through his hatred of the man that killed his father.

The character of Charles, almost Gandhi-like with his infinite love and belief in humanity, takes second fiddle. And that’s all right. After all hatred makes for a better subject than love especially in a film with dark undertones like “X-Men”.

Director Matthew Vaughn and his writers do an apt job in articulating the mutant universe, their fear and their need to belong. The metaphor is the insecurity of every geek or everyone different desperately trying to belong in a world hostile to them.

While Professor X chooses the path of love, Magneto chooses that of hatred, thus pitting them against each other in an eternal war.

The film thus navigates the many shades between black and white expertly, reaching in the end a point where both Magneto and Professor X, though being at the same end of spectrum with similar intentions, are nonetheless divided by the choices they make.

It is just like the rest of us find ourselves in life and the position we take and follow, which ultimately define us.

Magneto is also a perfect choice, and the good writing ensures that in the end he is made a tragic hero, on the lines of Prometheus of Greek mythology with the same angst, love and rebelliousness.

The main drawback of the film is that it is a little awkward and caricatures many situations in an attempt to be true to the other “X-Men” films.

It also draws heavily from Zack Snyder’s underrated masterpiece “Watchmen” and though it refuses to go dense into the human, and mutant condition, it is a commendable effort.

Though the audience can predict the end, aware as they are of the other “X-Men” movies, yet a good scriptwriting (consider handling so many characters and infusing life in them through good characterising) ensures that the entertainment and novelty values are not lost.

The casting is also almost spotless and all the actors revel in bringing out the angst and sublimity of their emotions.

“X-Men: First Class” in the scope of its story and its deft handling thus, it’s not just the confirmation of a well-established franchise, but the birth of a new one. Same when you consider an American mythology.

Cast: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence
Director: Matthew Vaughn
Studio: Fox
Rating: 3.5 stars

Review by Satyen K. Bordoloi, IANS
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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:15 am

http://www.mast-dunya.co.cc/2011/06/x-men-first-class-movie-review.html

Men: First Class - Movie review
Posted by Waheed Mughal | Labels: Bollywood celebrities, Hollywood New Movies, Movie Review, X-Men First Class (2011)
X Men: First Class
U/A; Action, sci-Fi
Dir: Matthew Vaughn
Cast: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Rose Byrne, January Jones, Oliver Platt, Kevin Bacon
***1/2
This 20th Century Fox release directed by Mathew Vaughn with story by Sheldon Turner and Bryan Singer, scripted by Ashley Edward Miller, Zack Stentz, Jane Goldman and Vaughn, charts the epic beginning of the X-Men saga.



Following the not-so-happening X Men Origins: Wolverine, this 60's set story, imagining the rise of Professor X, Magneto and their earliest mutant disciples, is drenched in cold war paranoia and served with a mythical dimension that may not necessarily enthuse Stan Lee purists.

The screenwriters expand the Auswitz-set prologue of year 2000's X-Men to include Nazi nihilism and x-treme action following the regrouping of powerful mutants to fight against world decimation, and is underlined by a James Bond kind of stylish swagger towards the finish.

Young camp refugee Erik Lensherr (Bill Milner), who has the power to bend metal with his mind, becomes evil Nazi Dr Schmidt's (Kevin Bacon) personal experiment with uncontrolled power.

Out of prison camp, an adult Erik (Michael Fassbinder) seeks revenge with mind-bending help from dashing Oxford academic Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) whose utopian visions leaves little room for their combined forces to last beyond the prison of this uniquely styled franchise.

Raven (Jennifer Lawrence), shape-shifting adoptive sister to Xavier, provides the psychological conflict required to catapult this thrill-a-minute actioner to something higher than just that.

The pronounced ideological conflict between Xavier and Erik also help raise that bar.

Helmer Vaughn showcases his expressiveness to great effect while stamping the narrative with visions of intolerance and suspicion within the setting of the period of Nazi domination, and in the latter half of nuclear paranoia and Cuban missile crisis.

The recruitment and training sequences, unlocking of extraordinary potential through instinctive ingenuity - of the plasma-blasting Havok (Lucas Till); sonic screamer Banshee (Caleb Landry Jones); the adaptive Darwin (Edi Gathegi, too little seen); and big-footed Hank McCoy (Nicholas Hoult) are particularly engaging. Their emotional, philosophical and physical progressions are cleverly defined.

Chris Seagers' retro-oriented production design is shown off to great effect by ace lensman John Mathieson's absorbing tracking and sharp camera angles.

Fassbender and McAvoy bear little resemblance to their earlier franchise counterparts Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart, yet they manage to fit in and make Charles and Erik memorable.

Hoult and Lawrence show off their respective characters' existential conflicts to great effect while Bacon's Schmidt and January Jones' Emma Frost give stark villainy added dimensions.

This flick is fast paced, smartly engineered, strong on psychological depth and has action that is visually stunning. Can we ask for more from a super-hero franchise?

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Post by Admin on Tue Jun 14, 2011 2:20 am

http://www.bollywoodwiki.in/review-xmen-class-class/

‘X-Men: First Class’ – first class indeed!
on June 12, 2011 at 10:56 am

Cast: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence; Director: Matthew Vaughn

Americans, in the absence of their own ancient mythology unlike the Indians, Chinese or Europeans, have developed a national mythology of a different kind where instead of gods and goddesses, they have their Anakin Skywalker, Darth Vader and Superman. “X-Men – First Class”, with its near perfect script, apt direction and some breathtaking visual effects, firmly enforces another mythological universe to this – those of the mutants.

Much before Professor X (James McAvoy) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender) fought at the opposite end of the fragile war and peace with inferior humans, they were best of friends, fighting for the good of humanity and mutants alike, in a world that did not know mutants existed.

When a powerful mutant threatens the world, the two working together develop a difference of perspective that will pit them against each other.

The film’s focus is on Erik Lensherr or Magneto, beginning with the same scene that the first “X-Men” opened to in a concentration camp. It moves through his hatred of the man that killed his father.

The character of Charles, almost Gandhi-like with his infinite love and belief in humanity, takes second fiddle. And that’s all right. After all hatred makes for a better subject than love especially in a film with dark undertones like “X-Men”.

Director Matthew Vaughn and his writers do an apt job in articulating the mutant universe, their fear and their need to belong. The metaphor is the insecurity of every geek or everyone different desperately trying to belong in a world hostile to them.

While Professor X chooses the path of love, Magneto chooses that of hatred, thus pitting them against each other in an eternal war.

The film thus navigates the many shades between black and white expertly, reaching in the end a point where both Magneto and Professor X, though being at the same end of spectrum with similar intentions, are nonetheless divided by the choices they make.

It is just like the rest of us find ourselves in life and the position we take and follow, which ultimately define us.

Magneto is also a perfect choice, and the good writing ensures that in the end he is made a tragic hero, on the lines of Prometheus of Greek mythology with the same angst, love and rebelliousness.

The main drawback of the film is that it is a little awkward and caricatures many situations in an attempt to be true to the other “X-Men” films.

It also draws heavily from Zack Snyder’s underrated masterpiece “Watchmen” and though it refuses to go dense into the human, and mutant condition, it is a commendable effort.

Though the audience can predict the end, aware as they are of the other “X-Men” movies, yet a good scriptwriting (consider handling so many characters and infusing life in them through good characterising) ensures that the entertainment and novelty values are not lost.

The casting is also almost spotless and all the actors revel in bringing out the angst and sublimity of their emotions.

“X-Men: First Class” in the scope of its story and its deft handling thus not just becomes the confirmation of a well-established franchise but the birth of a new one as well. Same when you consider an American mythology.

Rating – 4/5
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