Movie Review: The Wolverine

We all know his name, we all know his origin, and we definitely know what he can do. This famous comic book superhero has kept crowds cheering and cringing on film and on paper with his violent means of slicing and dicing using his razor-sharp claws and easy temper. Out this month, we venture back into the world of superheroes yet again this year, this time getting a first hand look into the violent and mysterious world of The Wolverine. 

(Spoilers Ahead!)
Hidden away in the Canadian wilderness, Logan aka Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) remains haunted by his past love Jean Grey (Famke Janssen) and has become a hermit of his former self. Logan is also haunted by the events of a bombing in 1945 Japan, where he saved the life of Yashida, the future CEO of a technology corporation in Tokyo. Now in present day, Logan is approached by Yukio, a mutant able to see how people will die, who offers him to return to Japan to say his farewells to the dying Yashida. Once there, Yashida offers Logan a chance to transfer his immortality and have a slow and humanly death that Logan wishes to have in order to return to Jean. After refusing, Yashida's doctor, the mutant Viper, injects Logan with a robotic parasite that affects his healing ability, making him vulnerable for the first time. The next day, at the funeral of Yashida, Logan is ambushed and must escape with Yashida's grand-daughter, Mariko. Together, the two must evade deadly assassins and ruthless ninjas as they search for the cure for Logan's healing ability. In the end, Logan creates a strong bond with Mariko and must face his most deadly foe: The Silver Samurai.  

Last time we saw the clawed Canadian on screen, he was equipped with a bad hairdo and the most CGI-ish claws you've ever seen, and he was teamed up with the lamest team you could possibly assemble. From a screwed-up Deadpool (I'll get to that) to a weird Gambit (Taylor Kitsch...huh, did you see John Carter and Battleship?), Logan's team of mutants assembled by William Stryker, the man who created Logan's metal claws, was a bit of a disappointment. In the tempered mutant's first origin story, the whole origin part of it is okay in my book, it's just the character development and plot that's got me wanting to forget the film ever happened. The worst of the characters was Ryan Reynolds' Wade Wilson aka Deadpool, who started out as the cocky sword-swinging assassin Deadpool was meant to be, but later became Weapon XI who had no mouth and was tattooed in weird lines and circles. They had the concept there, with Deadpool's powers of teleportation and his deadly sword-wielding skills, but just didn't put the character together just right. Maybe add a costume and Ryan Reynolds' loud mouth and you've got a pretty bad-ass Deadpool film (possibly rated-R for the character's genuine violent and inappropriate nature). Either way, The Wolverine overcame the bad previous origin story and carried on the beloved X-Men film arc.

Jackman, Hugh Jackman. That's the name you always hear whenever someone mentions a Wolverine film, or even the character in general. Ever since he rescued his mutant friend Rogue and entered Xavier's School of Gifted Youngsters in 2000's X-Men, Wolverine has captured our attention with his temper and amazing yet violent abilities. Jackman has become the perfect Wolverine/Logan with his charm and humor, along with his fearful anger when his claws come out. Hopefully, with the completion of his latest Wolfie film, Jackman will return in numerous X-Men films (such as 2014's Days of Future Past) as the furious character he was born to play. While he did deserved that Oscar for his performance in Les Miserables, I'll always want him to play the clawed animal he's portrayed in nearly six films already.

Overall, The Wolverine was a pretty well-done adaptation from the famous comic book story arc, creating the characters, such as Viper and The Silver Samurai, pretty well and making the action violent enough for a PG-13 rating (Logan literally almost ripped his heart out...that scene could have been a lot more bloodier). The final battle between Logan and Silver Samurai will forever be in my mind as the most awesome superhero face-off since the fast-paced, quite destructive battle of Superman and General Zod.

I gave this film a 9 out of 10 because it had good, sword-slicin' action, a well-done plot based on a famous story arc, and a Jacked-up Wolverine versus an almost-robotic giant samurai made from the stuff Logan's been cutting up baddies with since the beginning.     

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