A review of the new superhero movie “X-Men: Dark Phoenix”

Including “The Wolverine” and “Logan” but excluding spin offs (the Deadpool” films), this is the 10th “X-Men” movie and it looks like the last. Set in the early 1990s a decade after the events of “X-Men: Apocalypse”, the story revolves around the acquisition of extraordinary powers by Jean Grey (aka the eponymous Dark Phoenix) played by Sophie Turner (Sansa Stark from television’s “Game Of Thrones”) and a battle beween the X-Men team and a group of aliens led by the white-haired Vuk (Jessica Chastain who is known for her red hair). 

On the plus side, there are some fun special effects and I liked the notion of the good X-Men led by Dr Xavier (James McEvoy) teaming up with the bad X-Men led by Magneto (Michael Fassbender) to combat Vuk and her ilk, but the means by which Jean Grey became the Dark Phoenix is risible and the aliens seem to have wandered in from an entirely different film. Also there is a sad underutilisation of acting talent, most notably in the case of Jennifer Lawrence as Raven.

In dramatic contrast to the Avengers franchise, the X-Men series leaves us with a whimper rather than a bang. Stan Lee, creator of the cast of characters in both collections and to whom this film is dedicated, is no longer alive to see this rather limp finale.


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