Matt Adcock reviews X-Men: Apocalypse (12A)
Since the dawn of civilization, we have had those walk among us who have incredible ‘beyond human’ powers. These mutants stem from an ancient godlike entity who could transfer his consciousness from body to body, assimilating the powers of those he takes over. His name is Apocalypse (Oscar ‘The Force Awakens’ Isaac), the first and most powerful mutant of Marvel’s X-Men universe.
Virtually immortal and invincible, Apocalypse is awakened after thousands of years and immediately embarks on wiping out humanity. Only Raven / Mystique (Jennifer ‘Hunger Games’ Lawrence), Professor X (James ‘Filth’ McAvoy) and a team of young, inexperienced X-Men stand in his way.
Sounds good right? X-Men: Apocalypse is a return to the franchise of original director Bryan ‘The Usual Suspects’ Singer, it boasts a fantastic cast and serious budget, it is also the worst X-Men film to date. The plot is a horrible mess, which feels lightweight, muddled and overlong.
It’s hard to watch such a revered franchise making such a huge misstep as a big fan of the X-Men films. The biggest (of many) problems is bad guy Apocalypse himself, he’s a poorly realised villain who looks like he’s wandered onto set from a cheap Power Rangers show. Isaac is a superb actor but he’s totally hamstrung here by a terrible script and incomprehensible motivations. He’s over powered too but his powers come and go – one minute he can wipe out a room of enemies with a single look but when facing the X-Men he obliges each with an unmemorable one-on-one battle.
Then there are Apocalypse’s four disciples, made up of Magneto (the excellent Michael ‘Steve Jobs’ Fassbender who looks bored throughout), Storm (Alexandra Shipp), Psylocke (Olivia Munn) and Angel (Ben ‘EastEnders’ Hardy). Their purpose is hard to fathom other than being there for forced and wasted fights against the X-Men, it gets to the point where you start to feel bad for them as they obviously don’t want to be there.
The only bright spot was seeing Quicksilver (Evan ‘Kick-Ass’ Peters) reprising his speedy antics but even this isn’t as fresh or as jaw-dropping as in Days of Future Past. I don’t where the X-Men go from here but it would be tragic if Apocalypse was their last hurrah…