Geek Squad

X-Men puts its superhero "muties" in charge of flattering the core audience

Notice I haven't mentioned the plot's particulars--perhaps a similar afterthought in the movie's pitch sessions. Paced like Star Wars for two reels, Singer's tangled yarn proceeds to ravel faster than a time-crunched Buffy episode. Magneto kidnaps a young mutant, Rogue (Anna Paquin), from Xavier's safe house, and, in case we hadn't quite grasped the point, ties her to the Statue of Liberty. Even by Sixties standards, setting a battle for the souls of mutant folk on Ellis Island is a Sentinel-sized cliché (in the comics, the same point is made by letting the mutants "reclaim" the derogatory "mutie"). Executive producer Richard Donner's own bubble-brained Superman at least had its magical breather--that romantic night-flight with Margot Kidder's Lois Lane. In X-Men, all we get are Wolverine's flesh-piercing claws--which look really, really cool, by the way. For fans, perhaps being taken seriously is enough.

 

Cool thing: Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) and his claws in X-Men
Cool thing: Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) and his claws in X-Men

X-Men is playing at area theaters.

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