We’ve known for awhile that this would be Hugh Jackman’s final performance as Wolverine/Logan on screen. He’s said so publicly many times even before this movie started filming. An emotional Patrick Stewart also confirmed that he would be hanging up the Professor X… wheelchair(?) after Logan as well. Does the film provide a fitting send-off for these two beloved characters? Does the R rating improve the overall experience? Keep reading this Logan review to see what at least one fan thought.
Let me answer my second question first. Logan earns every bit of its R rating, and the movie is far better for it. Deadpool proved that an R-rated superhero movie could still make stupid amounts of money, and while not every superhero film *needs* to be rated R, Logan is a film that absolutely benefits from the additional freedom that the rating provides. With that out of the way, let’s continue on to the review. I’ve always been proud to be able to write spoiler-free movie reviews, and though this one was more difficult than most, I can promise you a spoiler-free review all the way up to the review box at the bottom (there’s a small, very vague non-movie kind of spoiler in the fine print at the very very bottom, but there’s plenty of warning before that). Let’s get on with it, shall we?
If you’ve seen any of the trailers or other promotional material for the film, you’ll know that we’re dealing with an older Logan. We’re seeing Wolverine in a way that we’ve never seen him before: slowed, aging, and vulnerable. The film definitely seems to have taken some inspiration from the Old Man Logan series of comic books, though mostly in character rather than plot. The film opens quite a few years in the future, and Logan is simply trying to blend in and disappear. You’ll know from the trailers — and from the fact that we already know that Patrick Stewart is in the movie — that Logan is still in contact with Professor X in some capacity. We’re also introduced to a mysterious young girl, introduced only as Laura. Comic fans should figure her out pretty much instantly, but the movie does a good job of weaving her story into the larger overarching story of Logan. That’s really all I want to say about plot points specifically because nearly anything else could delve into spoiler territory, and that’s just not something I want to do.
As the credits were rolling, the one thought that just kept popping into my head was that this is a very heavy movie. This is the kind of movie that just weighs on you in a few different ways. Being so far in the future, it’s somewhat separate from all of the previous X-Men movies, and while that allows the movie to stand on its own, there are some plot points that could stand to be fleshed out a bit more. Past events are hinted at, and you’ll have some idea of what has brought us to where we are as the movie takes place, but it is a bit thin in places.
The action, though, fantastic. I mentioned the freedom that the R rating provided, and they took full advantage. Fights are brutal, visceral, and exactly what we should have been seeing from Wolverine this whole time. Better late than never, though, right? Hugh Jackman was fantastic, as always. We’re introduced to Dafne Keen as Laura, and she holds her own throughout. Logan might not have the body count of John Wick 2, for example, but there is plenty of appropriate action with the type of carnage you’d expect from a superhero with freaking knives on his hands.
I don’t want to get too specific into the actors and their performances (again, trying real hard to avoid spoilers here), but suffice to say that nearly all of the main characters were very effective in their roles. I wouldn’t have complained if there were a bit more backstory about some of the newcomers and other minor characters, though with a 2hr 17min runtime they were already up against the clock a bit.
So does this movie provide a fitting send-off for two beloved characters? I’d give that a resounding yes. While this is an action movie at heart, it really gives you a gut punch directly in the feelings. We’re seeing a hobbled and broken down Wolverine — a character we’ve previously seen be nearly invincible — which is definitely off-putting. Would I recommend that you go see Logan? Absolutely. This is a heavy movie, but a movie that’s worth seeing.
I’m going to leave one semi-spoilery but not really detail in really tiny letters at the very bottom underneath the review box below, so it will be entirely up to you whether or not you want to read it. It has nothing to do with the movie itself but does involve the movie-going experience. You can safely read the review box but just stop there if you’re at all worried. You’ve been warned.