Wellie wellie well… we have our new CYCLOPS, JEAN GREY, and STORM. After a lot of casting rumours in the recent weeks, it looks like our new X-MEN movie is ready to get underway. This time around we get another sequel to the FIRST CLASS franchise. We’ll follow our heroes through the super rad 80s as they battle a big bad baddie known as APOCALYPSE, the first mutant. Like. Ever… You might want to boot up your 80s translator…
STORM will be played by ALEXANDRA SHIPP (the AALIYAH movie). The character may seem bland based on what we’ve seen on screen before. However, her story from the comics has many interesting arcs worth exploring. Her origin story involves thieving on the streets of Morocco(?). Her powers are most triumphant, cuz she like controls Mother Nature, dude. She could be a very dangerous target for Professor X and his team to hunt down. Let’s say, she might take some convincing to join the X-Men.
CYCLOPS will be played by TYE SHERIDAN (TREE OF LIFE, MUD). This young actor has impressed me so far. He seems to bottle up a lot of emotion, but still convey it on screen. He’s almost restrained. When you think of it, these acting traits are rather appropriate for the character of Cyclops. I hope the film explores his backstory and how he struggles to control his powers. I feel like his story could include some tragic events since any time he opens his eyes an optic blast of lethal energy blasts forth. An interesting connection across the FIRST CLASS movies is Cyclops (aka Scott Summers) relation to HAVOK (Alex). In the comics they are brothers, so I assume this connection will carry over to the movies. The last X-MEN movie showed Alex participating in Viet Nam.
JEAN GREY will be played by SOPHIE TURNER (Sansa Stark from GAME OF THRONES). Each season of THRONES, Turner has shown more and more range of her acting abilities. She could end up being an inspired choice, especially considering her role may extend into future X-MEN features.
Jean may play the most pivotal role in the X-MEN cinematic universe. Her personal relationships eventually involve Cyclops and Wolverine. What’s most interesting about visiting her character’s origins is how she handles the birth of her bodacious powers. She is arguably the most dangerous (re: totally gnarly) of any of our heroes.
Now let’s get into what might happen in X-MEN: APOCALYPSE…
I’m looking forward to some sort of mentorship between Xavier and Jean, perhaps akin to Mr. Miyagi and Daniel-san in the original KARATE KID from the tubular 80s. I wonder if Professor X will recruit these new heroes, only to be thrust into a world saving mission against Apocalypse? His new recruits won’t be prepared or trained for this. It could be intense to see X manage the team on the fly, trying to defeat the enemy and stop them from hurting themselves in the process.
One the X-MEN’s most non-non-heinous villains finally hits the screen. I’m totally talking about APOCALYPSE, played by OSCAR ISAAC. We got a brief glimpse of A-Poc at the end of the last X-MEN movie. We watched this mysterious figure assemble Ancient Egyptian Pyramids with telekenesis. Whereas the new team of heroes are inexperienced, A-Poc has had centuries to learn and prepare for this confrontation. How big will the scope of his attack be? Will he threaten the entire planet? His name kind of totally indicates that, eh.
Surprise news hit the other day, PATRICK STEWART said that he and IAN McKELLAN would not appear in this go-round. That would be most heinous. An X-MEN movie without these two would be a total bummer. I think an easy way to place X is with the intro. Maybe he’s with Wolverine, filling in the blanks of this new timeline Logan entered since he, you know, totally altered the course of history, dude. Then again, maybe this would be a cheap excuse that would stand out awkwardly? I just hope we somehow get a bit more time with Stewart and McKellan.
With this 80s setting, I wondered who else could join the team or make an appearance. We know what the team will look like in a decade or two, so it sort of limits who can join the team (for the long run). However, as FUTURE PAST showed us there can be casualties in the X-MEN universe. One character I’d love to see on screen is DAZZLER. Her mutant powers allow her to manipulate sound into energy. She can transform noise into lights, sort of like JUBILEE. The visuals alone scream for special FX attention. Her powers are just ripe for celluloid… er, um, digital screens.
The 80s also allows for social commentary. The movie could focus on the Cold War or Reagan’s war on drugs, for example. Since it’s a comic book movie, I’m more compelled on how they could use the decade’s music and pop culture. Sure, that’s shallow. But that’s the 80s, right.
X-MEN: APOCALYPSE will expand the team and bring us another step closer to a rebooted universe set in contemporary times. It will be nice to see these younger actors age on screen, and become the heroes we met in the very first X-MEN.
What do you think?
Should they have casted bigger names to play these new heroes?
Would you rather have director MATTHEW VAUGHN return to the franchise? Or do you like the idea of BRYAN SINGER steering this franchise towards the events of his first X-Men film?
What other heroes or villains should appear from the comic books?
What storyline would you like to see the X-MEN movies tackle next?