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tumblr_kohrleBoLY1qznd83o1_1280I had the opportunity to see The Wolverine this past weekend and it’s a solid film, but before I continue I must warm you of spoilers.  If you’re still reading and don’t want to know anything about this movie leave now, because I intend on spoiling the be-Jesus out of this movie.  You were warned — here we go.  The movie The Wolverine is inspired by the 1982 Chris Claremont/Frank Miller wolverinetweetsmallI wished that they’d just done a straight up adaptation of Chris Claremont/Frank Miller miniseries, setting it in a moody, neon-lit, crime-riddled version of the ’80s.  Another major problem of The Wolverine and one of its biggest surprises is that it’s a direct sequel to X-Men 3: The Last Stand.   When First Class came out in 2011, I was sure that we were going ahead and forgetting X-Men 3 ever happened, but instead, The Wolverine doubles down and picks up right where that one left off.   I can respect that James Mangold, the director of the film, chose to do it that way.  He’s building something by salvaging a failure.  For a Wolverine solo film, The Wolverine exceeds the low standards set by X-Men Origins: Wolverine, so it will be regarded as a success, but because this film also co-exists in the world of all movies X-Men that bar was re-raised to a high standard by 2011’s X-Men: First Class, but also the standard being set by Marvel’s own in-house Marvel Cinematic Universe films starring the various Avengers.

Finally, it’s a mess that turns pretty funny at the end, and a post credits sequence on par with X-Men Origins: Wolverine, but more bore.  That’s a shame.  The characters deserve better, and particularly Jackman, who’s 13 years into this whole Wolverine business and plays him with the same effortless charm we’ve come to expect, deserves a whole lot better.

Your beloved Raphy

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