Sunday, June 5, 2011

What's Wrong With Me?

I'm completely convinced at this point that there is something psychologically wrong with me. Of course, you have be somewhat deformed in the brain in order to get into the business of film criticism, because nobody wants to judge movies. People want to enjoy movies, and that's their primary goal. I wish I was stupid enough to do that, and that's not a put-down of anybody who goes to see movies to enjoy them. Being stupid is rarely a bad thing. It shields you from harm in a sort of way. You'll notice that no sociopaths or serial killers are complete idiots. Then again, that may be because they don't make for pretty great movies.

The catharsis behind this all is X-Men: First Class, the latest blockbuster on the block that has everyone buzzing. It makes me feel so bad about not enjoying it, because everywhere I go, I find people raving about it. My friends and family love it, and I just did not, and I feel I need further explanation of why. People don't step into a movie with a necessary idea of how it was esthetically composed, other than critics who intend for such. People don't realize that nearly every shot in a film has to have a desired purpose or reason. With that in mind, X-Men: First Class is clunky as all hell in intention.

Take one of the early scenes, for instance, where Charles Xavier meets Raven Darkholme. It starts out abrupt cutting of Charles heading downstairs, and it raises absolutely no suspense or unease. Then, when he finally reaches the kitchen, he jumps so oddly into accusation of Raven in the form of his mother. There is no sense of discovery, with the exception of a giddy look on his face when he sees Raven's blue form. It all flows too smoothly and unrealistically. The next scene depicts Sebastian Shaw murdering Erik's mother in front of him, and there's absolutely no emotional pit at that moment. No grieving for the dead woman. Just an emotional outburst of over-the-top visual effects, and Erik crushing two guards' skulls with their own helmets. That's the sort of scene you'd expect of some low-class horror flick.

Aside from the execution, it was also very discouragingly sexist. I doubt the men in the audience cared very much because there were hot scantily clad women on the screen. I was tempted to ignore it based on scenes of Moira using her sexuality to gain access to a high-end club, or Raven taking pride in her nude blue form, but it never really goes anywhere. Moira is ultimately just a ditsy idiot who falls victim to the plans of men, as made perfectly clear by the ending of the film for her. Raven is seen as something of a slut, trying to seduce Erik while still holding a place in her heart for Beast, but ultimately walking away from the latter.

The biggest travesty of all is that the film betrayed everything that it was in the first place. Everyone should know that Moira does remember Charles in the original X-Men canon, not to be a geek about it, so wiping her memory is just predictable and idiotic. Magneto was never meant to be a villain, yet the ending so clearly paints him as one. I won't even get into how stupid his costume looks, but it does look really stupid. And then there's how Charles became paralyzed, which is quite underwhelming as it comes from a bullet. Nothing worth losing it for. Just a throwaway casualty, much like that of Darwin. I ultimately find the film that could've been rather informative to be entirely unnecessary. It's hard to think anything could be worst than Wolverine or The Last Stand, but I firmly believe this is.

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