In a summer of superhero movies overload, it is a shame that none of them has managed to really cause a dent or become relevant enough to stay in the collective conscience of moviegoers, Iron Man 3 was disappointing.
Man of Steel was all kinds of meh. Add The Wolverine to the growing list.
You might need mutant powers to follow-up with the timeline of all these X-men movies. The Wolverine happens after the events of X-Men: The Last Stand. It has very few elements that relate it to X-Men Origins: Wolverine. And quite frankly, I just don’t get the infatuation with this X-man, out of them all, to give him movie after movie. Yet again, the only reason The Wolverine was made is apparently to draw in some serious cash. The good thing is that unlike other superhero movies, Wolverine has been played by only one actor – Hugh Jackman – who has gotten his character down to a science.
The script, which I bet was written in less time than it has taken me to write this review, starts with Logan flashing back to surviving the Nagazaki atomic bomb and saving a young Japanese man in the process. Flash forward to present time and Logan is trotting it in some woods, trying to stay away from civilization until he is sought out by a Japanese woman who wants to take him back to the man he saved those many years ago, now the head of Japan’s leading corporation and dying of cancer. That man, Yashida, offers Logan something he had been seeking for a long time: a way to die.
The cast, most of which is Japanese, does a good job. But that’s not saying much because the material they’re given is dismal at best. There are too many villains. None of them is memorable enough. Even the big bad villain reveal, aimed to be shocking, comes off on the cooler side of tepid, predictable, boring, uneventful. None of the characters are engrossing. They are all there to advance a movie that’s seemingly going nowhere interesting.
Despite some strong scenes interspersed here and there, The Wolverine comes off on the weaker side in the X-men series. For a casual viewer, the movie might prove entertaining and different enough (it takes place in Japan, not New York) to watch. But for those who had high hopes that this would be their movie of the summer or at least keep up the momentum that X-Men: Origins started, be ready for one big fest of claws coming out, the big bad guys panicking and you yawning.