X-Men: First Class

On Sunday, my wife and I saw X-Men: First Class at the Pacific Theaters Glendale 18 in Glendale, CA. It was the first film presentation I've seen in a while, and I was a bit surprised that this movie is not being offered in 3D. And you know what? I didn't miss it at all.

I'm a big fan of the X-Men movies, and this one is a worthy prequel. Set mostly in 1962 before and during the Cuban missile crisis, it tells the tale of how Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto (Michael Fassbender), Raven/Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), and other "good" mutants got their start working together to defeat the evil Sebastian Shaw (Kevin Bacon) and his band of "bad" mutants as they try to foment World War III. We also see how Xavier's triumphant team splits up as Mystique and a few others end up following Magneto, setting up the stories from X-Men, X2, and X-Men: Last Stand. (On a side note, look for a cameo by Hugh Jackman as Logan/Wolverine.)

I was surprised at how little I noticed that the presentation was film, not digital. Of course, I did see the reel-change markers—once you've seen them, you can't not see them—but the print was very good shape, so there weren't a lot of scratches, and I saw very little gate judder, indicating a good film projector. And as I mentioned, I didn't miss 3D at all, even though there were plenty of shots that would be quite effective in 3D.

The sound levels were high, but not overly so—at least, not while I had my earplugs in. The average level over the entire movie plus trailers was 79.8dBA, the highest 1-minute maximum was 93.0dBA, and the level exceeded 84.0dBA 10 percent of the time, 77.0dBA 33 percent of the time, 72.5dBA 50 percent of the time, and 60.0dBA 90 percent of the time.

I really enjoyed this installment of the X-Men franchise, and I highly recommend it to anyone with a taste for adventure, gorgeous shape-shifting women, and/or handsome men with magnetic personalities.

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ca1ore's picture

I thought this movie was good, but not as good as the reviews had suggested. They do fool around a lot with the mythology, so if you are a long time X-Men reader, there will be things that rankle. But, at the end of the day, Hollywood has always had a rather loose approach to adpating meaterial from other mediums.
It seems pretty evident that sequel(s) are planned, so perhaps next time around we'll get to the proper characters.

notabadname's picture

I saw it in a digital cinema, which I am a big fan of, without 3D. I have become a fan of digital projection because of the one thing that annoys me more than all else at the theater - focus. A just-out-of-focus projector drives me up a wall with movies. Maybe I am just sensitive to it, but with digital projection, like with a TV at home, the image is always pixel perfect in regards to focus. And I will take a sharp 2D image, like this movie had, any day. And I, like Scott Wilkinson, did not miss the 3D. The film was very enjoyable for me as well, and did a fine job of connecting the youthful characters with the established franchise. I did find some of the plot "over-the-top" and a couple of the mutation's "powers" a little hard to buy into, but I enjoyed it all the same. I don't want to give spoilers, so will say no more than that about plot, but hey, how much reality can one expect in a movie about people who control metal, spawn weather or fly :)


uavK.Reid's picture

I really enjoyed the film as well. I saw it opening night. I did not miss 3D at all. The cameo by Hugh Jackman was an unexpected surprise. Hopefully, a sequel will be in the works.

Archangel25's picture

I was not surprised how bad this movie was. All of the X-Men movies were terrible. You will have to be a comic book fan who have read all of the X-Men titles being with the first X-Men with the class which consisted of Scott Summers (Cyclops) OLDER brother of Alex Summers (Havok), Jean Grey (Marvel Girl), Hank McCoy (Beast...in the comic books he did not turned hairy this fast), Bobby Drake (Iceman), and Warren Worthington III (Angel...why would they give a girl with wasp wings the name Angel?). At first I thought this was a prequel to the X-Men of the movies not the comic books but it must be a reboot because in X-Men: The Last Stand at the beginning, a bald, walking Charles Xavier was getting out of a car driven by Erik to go see Jean Grey. In this movie, he had a head full of hair and could walk before being crippled which by the way this is not the way he was crippled in the comic book, and Erik/Magneto separated and form their own teams. I could go on and on but I do hope the next time an X-Men movie is made, IT IS DONE RIGHT!!!!!

Scott Wilkinson's picture
I must admit that I'm not familiar with the original X-Men comic books, so I wouldn't know if the movies are true to them or not. If I were familiar with the comics, and the movies were not true to them, I'd probably be unhappy about that as well. I did notice that some of the characters from the previous movies weren't in this one, which seemed a bit odd. And I haven't seen The Last Stand in a while, so I didn't remember the inconsistency you point out about Xavier, which is the sort of thing I object to as well. Still, I enjoyed this movie and the others, perhaps more so because I don't know the comic books. In any event, you make good points, and thanks for sharing them with us!
Chosen's picture

I'm a big marvel fan and yes it does irritate me some when Hollywood plays with characters when they have so much material to choose from. So in recent years I have come to the realization I'm never going to get my fantasy comic book movie. OK well maybe Dark Knight is pretty dang close but I don't except to see the comic to be followed at all in these movies.

So I go into theater to sit down and watch it from a movie goers perspective. I pretend like I never heard of the X-men or read a single comic. By doing this it puts me at ease while watching the movie.

I have to say from a movie stand point this is one of the better ones. Characters are a lot more interesting, Fassbender is an excellent Magneto and the relationship he has with Charles really sucks you into the movie. I'm glad they did focus on characters in this instead of mindlessly throwing people with super powers fighting in a melee like X-3.

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