The popular comic book was finally onscreen in live action format. The task seemed impossible considering its wide range and diversity of characters. But the X-men movie is a sufficient attempt. It’s story is rather straightforward which makes it easier for those unfamiliar with the material. Mankind has genetically mutated and a senatorial hearing demands mutant registration. The argument is that mutant powers should not be hidden from the public so that other humans can feel secure. Examples of the good mutants are the telekinetic Jean Grey and telepathic Professor X while the opposing group, meaning those against the Senate bill, include the metal controlling Magneto, the reptilian Toad, and Saber Tooth. One main character is a wanderer with self healing powers and his name is Wolverine whose hands grow steel claws when he is angry.
Directed by Bryan Singer, the story is taken seriously and contains a variety of personalities. Hugh Jackman plays a grumpy Wolverine and sports a pompadour hairstyle. Anna Paquin is the overly-cautious Rogue who can drain people of their energy when she touches them. Patrick Stewart is the sanguine professor X who is permanently on a wheelchair and runs a school for mutants. He has a chamber shaped like a globe where he closes his eyes and can envision anyone’s whereabouts around the planet. As for chemistry, it’s worth mentioning that Jackman and Famke Janssen (as Jean Grey) work well together. But it is Ian McKellen who is very effective as the embittered Magneto. His plan, although quite vague, is to transform humanity into mutants. A brief back story on his childhood takes place in a Nazi camp in a scene which draws pity. The movie relies heavily on terrific special effects and although light on story, does not exclude the importance of its performances.