How the mighty have fallen in “Logan.” It’s the year 2029, & Professor X (Patrick Stewart) is far gone in dementia, his rapid ravings only disturbed by the administration of highly powerful drugs. Logan (Hugh Jackman), is a bearded, haggard and gimpy shadow of his former self, consuming intensely and coughing regularly, his famous recuperative abilities much reduced.
Of the other X-Men, there is no trace (some mysterious disaster has ruined them) other than a fragile Caliban (Stephen Merchant), hardly functional in the role of Professor X’s caregiver.
There is, throughout this newest X-Men film, a foreboding sensation of farewell to all that. Which is only suitable, given that this is the last film in the franchise in which Jackman and Stewart are playing these famous roles. Both men have announced in interviews that they are hanging up the adamantium claws and the psionic abilities that have been their characters’ interpreting features since the series was released returning in 2000.
The figures are going out with a wheeze, the toll of years of fighting evildoers crushing them actually and emotionally. But in Logan’s situation, he is also held by a volcanic anger against the dying of the light. When roused from his funk and stirred into a last frenzy of action, he deploys those shining claws with such berserker-fueled ferocity (many are the heads and torsos graphically impaled) that this is the 1st “X-Men” film to go out into the world with an R rating. (All past “X’s” have been PG-13.)
Director/co-screenwriter James Mangold (Scott Frank and Michael Green share screenplay credit) has a particular appreciation for Wolverine, having directed Jackman in 2013’s eponymous “The Wolverine.” Instead of putting the emphasis on superhero superpowers, Mangold delves deeply into these characters’ human-scale weaknesses.
At the begin, Logan is an embittered husk, loaded with regret, looking back on a career where “bad (expletive) happens to people I care about.” So he is tried to end caring. Except he can not. He, along with Caliban, is Professor X’s caregiver, at one point even tenderly carrying the man and his wheel chair upstairs to tuck him into bed.
And he is attracted, very reluctantly, into caring for and protecting a mysterious young girl mutant named Laura, who he finds possesses the same adamantium-claw-deploying abilities as he does. Changes out they are genetically connected; and though she also possesses a raging character to match his own, he becomes her protector.
A mad researcher (Richard E. Grant) and an army of mechanically and genetically enhanced bad people pursuit the military across nation, with battles and bloodshed regularly marking their progress.
Laura is mute for most of the film and Keen, in her feature debut, conveys a outstanding range of emotion via her large soulful sight. For their aspect, Jackman and Stewart give perhaps the most heartfelt performances that they are ever taken to an “X-Men” film. Though the tone of the movie is pervasively downbeat, they are both going out on a very high note.