Hugh Jackman returns as The Wolverine for reportedly the last time in a much more adult take on the comic book movie. Logan is a 15 rated movie and features gory violence, lots of swearing and most interestingly is much more of a character led story.
The year is 2029 and mutants are all but extinct. Logan is trying to scrabble together enough money to escape civilisation with Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) when a young girl comes into his life. What follows is a road movie, interspersed with violent action scenes as Logan struggles with his fear of building relationships.
Easily the best solo film outing for Wolverine, but still with faults, this at the very least feels like the perfect swan song for the character.
Jackman has described the film as a “darker version of Little Miss Sunshine” and it’s here that its key strengths lay. The scenes with Logan, Xavier and Laura (Dafne Keen) as a surrogate family are where the film soars. Elsewhere it brings in lesser known character actors to fill out the supporting roles, Boyd Holbrook (of Narcos fame) and Richard E Grant are intriguing bad guys whilst Stephen Merchant and Eriq La Salle play crucial roles that are there to reflect Logan’s emotional turmoil.
Faults are still there, initially it feels quite jarring to see the character in such a different, more adult setting. The timeline and world setting are loosely sketched, is it fair to blame this film for the previous X Films confusing us all so much? Most crucially though it loses momentum at points, the goal being sought by the group isn’t as important as the relationships they form, but it would be nice for it to have a more tangible purpose.
If only they had explored this side of The Wolverine to begin with, as it’s one worth exploring.
Finally, don’t wait till the end of the credits for a scene. The film is over when it fades to black.