The newest film in the X-Men franchise has arrived, linking the original trilogy and its prelude, X-Men: First Class, together in an attempt to combine some of the audience’s favourite characters. With stars such as Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman and Ellen Page reprising their super-powered roles, the film features a narrative where mutants are near extinct, in a future reminiscent of Nazi Germany, due to the actions of Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence).
In order to change the future, the small number of mutants left attempt to send Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) back to 1973 using Kitty Pryde’s (Ellen Page) newly-discovered and somewhat unexplained ability of merging one’s consciousness into a younger version of themselves in the past. In this sense, X-Men: Days Of Future Past vaguely follows the 1981 comic book of the same name, in which Kitty sends her own mind back in time to prevent an apocalyptic future. It is also refreshing to see an X-Men film which does not entirely focus on Wolverine but on the relationship between Professor X (James McAvoy/Patrick Stewart) and Magneto (Michael Fassbender/Ian McKellen).
Much to the excitement of comic book fans everywhere, the infamous sentinels are portrayed as the main threat to the X-Men in this film. Those who are unsure of these villains should be aware that they are robots created by Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage) to police mutants and detain them. However, they work too effectively and are eventually used to kill anyone who is a mutant and those who attempt to help them.
What makes these villains so significant however is how they allow both Xavier’s X-Men and Magneto’s Brotherhood Of Mutants to work together in order to determine their own survival, as presented wonderfully in the film through the breathtaking portrayal of the unstoppable sentinels in the future.
X-Men:Days Of Future Past takes a rather more gritty approach than the former films, with a number of onscreen deaths in the post-apocalyptic future. With that in mind, the action scenes are excellently rendered and, despite its tendency to switch between past and future quickly, the story is fairly easy to follow. The colours added in post-production differentiate the contrasting time periods; scenes set during the 1970s are vibrant and colourful, whereas the scenes set in the future are tinted darker, giving the impression that the future had no hope for mutantkind, and giving a nostalgic feeling to the past.
Days Of Future Past makes up for Patrick Stewart and Ian McKellen’s last X-Men appearance, The Last Stand, which was seen to ruin the franchise for a number of people. X-Men: Days Of Future Past uses time-travel as a means to whitewash over the events that had occurred in previous films.
It should be mentioned that if you are unaware of any of the previous X-Men films, this movie may not be the best to watch first; it relies heavily on knowledge of the preceding films. With that in mind, X-Men: Days Of Future Past neatly packages the entire franchise together to allow for the announced film X-Men: Apocalypse, as hinted by the appearance of the super mutant in the post-credit scene.