X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)

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An ancient mutant is revived and enlists the aid of Magneto and three other powerful individuals to reshape the world in his own image.

X-Men Apocalypse is a new X-Men origin story which takes advantage of the time meddling of Days Of Future Past to essentially ignore many of the previous events of the franchise. Bryan Singer once again takes the helm and in one scene even openly mocks the weakest instalment – The Last Stand – but he actually makes many of the same mistakes of that particular film. There are too many characters, many of which feeling pointless and dispensable, the set pieces are handled like a child playing with action figures rather than providing any emotion or drama, and the characters and their relationships are superficial and poorly realised; in particular the flashbacks to the first film and First Class serve only to remind how much better they were in this regard. There is also far too much CGI making it often feel like a glorified cartoon and the production design as a whole has a tacky “Toys R Us” quality to it.

There is enough going on to stave off boredom, but Apocalypse has a surprising lack of action for its needlessly long running time and the best sequence of the film set at the Weapon X facility actually serves no purpose to the larger story except as pure fan-boy gratification. Apocalypse is not as bad as The Last Stand, but the weak dialogue, juvenile humour and two dimensional characterisation made it very difficult for me to care what was going to happen, which considering the fact that I grew up with these characters is quite a damning criticism in itself.

As a whole, the latest X-Men movie is decently executed but purely by the numbers modern blockbuster fodder.

6/10

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