Logan: The first Trailer is here! And it’s set the internet alight, going suitably ‘viral’.
It looks distinguished. As in, competent, inventive and distinct from all other X Men products, whilst remaining somehow within that universe and its mythology. Hugh Jackman looks better than ever in the role of Wolverine /Logan. Yes, he has aged, though not quite to the elderly status implied by the supposed source material of Old Man Logan (an excellent comic book). It’s a shame that this is set to be Mr. Jackman’s last turn with the metal claws. He’s in great shape, still. But weathered, with minor and subtle changes to beard / hair indicating the usual metamorphoses that define these sorts of films.
Patrick Stewart also features and he has aged up his version of Professor X. Of course, Sir Patrick is a man in his 70s in real life, but vital and energetic. This is a very studied portrait of old age, with little touches like a faltering voice and body language. Theatrical technique, married to cinematic format (very difficult to accomplish; Stewart nails it in one shot).
The key strength is atmosphere. This could be a classic western and /or an apocalyptic adventure. Think Mad Max meets Unforgiven. Fitting, as Jackman’s Logan was always part Mel Gibson, part Clint Eastwood, whilst being his own animal.
There is a simplicity, a clarity here. Film grammar and visual story telling at its best. Matters helped by a clear and simple premise. There is a girl. She’s in trouble. Logan is implored by old mentor, Professor X, to come to the rescue. Cue a fight to what is very probably, a death of some sort..
Quibbles? Drawbacks (claw-backs?!). The premise is derivative and has been done before, arguably within the X Men and Wolverine series. The happy ending of Days of Future Past is arguably undone by this futuristic nightmare-scape. The villains look fairly generic and disposable: where are Richard E Grant, Stephen Merchant et al? No love interest. No doubt any shortcoming is simply an indication that more is to come in trailer 2, before the film’s release in March 2017. We look forward to reviewing it then. This trailer bodes well. Cue that Johnny Cash music..