This review was written by Anthony J Digioia. Follow him and his website here for more awesome reviews: SilverScreen Analysis
“LOGAN” is directed by James Mangold and stars; Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Dafne Keen, Boyd Holbrook and Stephen Merchant.
This story takes place in the not so distant future as an aging Logan tries to care for Professor X in the New Mexico desert. But this will not be easy as a young mutant shows up being hunted by a group of dangerous men. Which is the bare-bone plot to this one without going into any spoilers at all.
Now I was so pumped for this movie. Hugh Jackman has been playing this role since 2000 and in my opinion his performances in the role of the Wolverine over the years, especially early on, were one of the major factors in helping bring some legitimacy to the comic-book movie genre.
Jackman has been playing this character, excellently I might add, for 17 years now and like all good things they much come to an end, and in my opinion “Logan” was the equivalent of star quarterback winning the Super Bowl in his final season.
I thought this movie was simply amazing on every facet and could not have asked for a better closing performance for Jackman as the Wolverine. Now if you had a chance to check out my review for 2013’s “Wolverine” you may remember me saying I thought Jackman was best in the role when the character is dealing with turmoil or inner conflict and that was exactly what this film delivers.
We have never seen the character in this state before and it was absolutely compelling. Logan is a broken-down man, worn out, and tired of life, and seeing a once powerful and seemingly unstoppable hero in the dark places the character is in this story, was both heartbreaking and intriguing. Something that was pulled off with its full impact through the writing, and more specifically the amazing performance of Jackman, who conveys this fractured mental state with perfection.
The story-line was a simple formula but when placed with the character of Logan, the life we know he has lived, and the years of fighting he had endured, it comes off so much more impactful than it would with some other character. This was a comic-book movie that never felt like one, and it was a breath of fresh air for the genre. It was a well-written, highly emotional drama, that just so happened to have one of the most famous comic-book characters in it, and I thought the result was a riveting blend of dramatic story-telling and raw violence.
As for the R-rating, something that added to the intrigue of this movie. It was well earned, and even more so better utilized to sell the direction and tone of the script. Very early on, the f-bombs were dropped repeatedly, and for a glimmer of a second and I was hoping it wasn’t going to force things. Then after the first action-sequence it was clear this would not be the case, and that the R-rating would be something this film would use to its advantage.
The action was violent, bloody, well placed and fantastic, finally capturing the true feel of Wolverine’s rage without always cutting away right before the kill-shot. Over the years, we have grown accustomed to seeing Jackman rage-out with the double handed chest strikes on his enemies signifying a kill, but never showing it.
This was finally the full-on claws to the head violence fans have wanted for years and it did not disappoint. I thought for the most part the action was excellent. There were some moments of slight over-editing but it was minimal. There were still some awesome fight-sequences that were gritty, raw, and perfectly tailored to the mood and tone of the story.
As for the rest of the cast the were all great. I thought Stephen Merchant and Boyd Holbrook were believable in their roles. I did think Holbrook’s character was rather generic but he was still serviceable for this plot. Patrick Stewart was excellent once again. It was also compelling to see him as well in a physical and mental state we have never seen before. His delivery was amazing as was his chemistry with Jackman which it always has been. That chemistry being something that was vital to success of this story-line.
As for Dafne Keen she was fantastic as well. She fit this role perfectly and for a girl as innocent looking as she was, she still came off as completely believable in the action scenes. The delivered the same type of rage we see from Wolverine and she felt comfortable in the strong persona her character gave off as the story progresses.
Overall this was a fantastic film. While it may not have been a perfect film from a writing or technical aspect, it was pretty damn close. James Mangold’s direction was subtle, but precise and perfect fitted for sending this character off into the sunset.