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X2: X-Men United (2003)

tomatometer

87

Average Rating: 7.4/10
Reviews Counted: 224
Fresh: 195 | Rotten: 29

Tightly scripted, solidly acted, and impressively ambitious, X2: X-Men United is bigger and better than its predecessor -- and a benchmark for comic sequels in general.

78

Average Rating: 6.8/10
Critic Reviews: 45
Fresh: 35 | Rotten: 10

Tightly scripted, solidly acted, and impressively ambitious, X2: X-Men United is bigger and better than its predecessor -- and a benchmark for comic sequels in general.

audience

84

liked it
Average Rating: 3.7/5
User Ratings: 968,422

My Rating

Movie Info

When a failed assassination attempt occurs on the President's (Cotter Smith) life by the teleporting mutant Nightcrawler (Alan Cumming), it's Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and his School for Gifted Youngsters who are targeted for the crime. While Jean Grey (Famke Janssen) and Storm (Halle Berry) try and locate the assassin, Cyclops (James Marsden) and Xavier (also known as 'Professor X') seek answers from their old foe Magneto (Ian McKellan) in his glass cell...Little do they know they're

Nov 25, 2003

$214.8M

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All Critics (224) | Top Critics (45) | Fresh (195) | Rotten (29) | DVD (51)

There's little zest, less grace and, particularly in the writing, no creative spark to ignite the imagination.

April 15, 2013 Full Review Source: Wall Street Journal
Wall Street Journal
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The plotting seems dangerously self-interested, being concerned almost exclusively with the survival of the mutants themselves, and, behind the succulent effects, the tone is oddly hectoring.

April 15, 2013 Full Review Source: New Yorker
New Yorker
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Bigger and more ambitious in every respect, from its action and visceral qualities to its themes.

April 15, 2009 Full Review Source: Variety
Variety
Top Critic IconTop Critic

The emotional spectrum has widened, too, encompassing buoyant mirth and heroic tragedy.

February 9, 2006 Full Review Source: Time Out
Time Out
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Very smart, if way too long.

May 28, 2003 Full Review Source: Newsday
Newsday
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Suffice to say that I was steadily engrossed and entertained and ultimately moved by a drama that is, in the end, more human than mutant.

May 23, 2003 Full Review Source: New York Observer
New York Observer
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Bigger and badder than No. 1, but still a blast.

December 29, 2010 Full Review Source: Common Sense Media
Common Sense Media

'X' hits the spot.

July 7, 2010 Full Review Source: Big Picture Big Sound
Big Picture Big Sound

This has set the standard very high for this Summer and it will be interesting to see what, if any films, can match its calibre.

July 7, 2010 Full Review Source: Dark Horizons
Dark Horizons

For this brief shining moment, the "X-Men" universe held perfect pitch, and funny book movies had a new standard of execution to live up to.

December 7, 2009 Full Review Source: Modamag.com
Modamag.com

A truly superior sequel to the original...

April 29, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinema Crazed
Cinema Crazed

The higher aspirations sometimes weigh the action down, creating a story that is interesting but not always engaging, lacking the exuberance that could have made it truly exciting.

April 21, 2009 Full Review Source: Cinefantastique
Cinefantastique

It takes a true cinema talent to turn the daunting and rather unwieldy 40 years of material into a coherent yet complex, smart yet incredibly fun entertainment that satisfies both the fanboys and newbie moviegoers alike.

December 28, 2008 Full Review Source: TheMovieReport.com
TheMovieReport.com

X2 feels very much like a step on the way to something else; but if you can forgive it that, and its occasional hastiness, it's well worth going to see.

December 7, 2007 Full Review Source: Eye for Film
Eye for Film

Singer and his screenwriters know the value of a surprise and they deliver their share without dipping into the absurd. The result is a movie that surpasses expectations, a superhero flick that can rightfully take its place alongside the best.

August 5, 2007 Full Review Source: Bangor Daily News (Maine)
Bangor Daily News (Maine)

Bryan Singer ... makes sure the animating theme of this series -- the freedom to be different in the face of intolerant authority -- doesn't get lost in the din of battle.

July 23, 2007 Full Review Source: eFilmCritic.com
eFilmCritic.com

Possibly one of the best superhero franchises in history, X2 is thoroughly engaging, well acted and well plotted. Bryan Singer is a master of the genre.

August 8, 2006 Full Review Source: Cinema Sight
Cinema Sight

Les mutants reviennent sur nos écrans en très grande forme

October 2, 2005 Full Review Source: Panorama

A bigger and better sequel to the 2000 original.

July 5, 2005 Full Review Source: Bullz-Eye.com
Bullz-Eye.com

Like the first film, this one once again failed me to draw me into the world of the X-Men.

March 5, 2005 Full Review Source: NYC Film Critic
NYC Film Critic

As a big screen comic book, X2 is the most rewarding I have yet seen.

January 15, 2005 Full Review Source: Looking Closer
Looking Closer

A superbly done roller coaster of a sci-fi/fantasy spectacle.

October 14, 2004 Full Review

Audience Reviews for X2: X-Men United

Wolverine returns from a failed attempt to discover his origins to find the X-Men under siege from a shadowy organisation bent on the extermination of mutantkind. As a long time fan of the comic books, the original X-Men film was a disappointment. Its superficial realisation of the characters and their relationships and an all but absent plot was wholly unsatisfactory, but what it succeeded in doing was laying the groundwork for a sequel that could take the ideas presented and run with them to glorious effect; and that's exactly what Bryan Singer did with X2. Wolverine, who was always by far the most intriguing character, rightfully takes centre stage and his exploration of his past seen here is far more interesting (and accurate) than his own cinematic vehicle X-Men Origins: Wolverine that came 7 years later. The sophisticated, multi-layered plot beautifully ties together many threads and disparate characters to perfectly capture the best themes of the books, namely prejudice, divided loyalties and moral ambiguities and each character is given just enough room to shine. The action sequences are also a huge improvement; the opening sequence features more thrills than the entire first films combined and every set piece is a perfectly pitched combination of excitement, plot development and characterisation; the assault on the mansion and Magneto's escape being the pick of a brilliant bunch. X2 pre-dates Batman Begins by 2 full years and at the time was easily the most "adult" superhero film around and contains the formula of the intelligent blockbuster that Nolan would go on to perfect. If only Brett Ratner hadn't fumbled the ball so badly for the third instalment, I suspect that this film would be rightfully recognised as the coming of age of Marvel Studios and the beginning of the Renaissance of the superhero genre.
October 17, 2013
garyX
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer

More super heroes. More action. More fun. Better acting, upon re watching still held its initial impression; which is a good thing. I advice watching it. Nice set up for the third movie.
June 7, 2013
Nikhil N.
Nikhil Nandu

Super Reviewer

Bryan Singer's sequel to the mutant-based saga is more in-depth and captivating than its predecessors. The film does well in blending in the excessive star-power in its cast while also developing a well-articulate plot. Its action sequences as well as its emotional sequences delivers to keep the audiences in wonder and awe. 4.5/5
May 6, 2013
Eugene Bernabe

Super Reviewer

The X-Men series is a goldmine for superhero writers. Just think of an ability and you have a potential mutant. Add the racism analogy and you have cool super-heroes with a message AND a cause to fight for.

X2 brings all of this together in a story so packed with action, in a script so easy to follow, it is a really enjoyable flick.

Unfortunately, at over two hours, it gets a bit tedious as you squirm in your seat for the climax.

And each of the movies seems to need a scene where the parents are unrealistically distant and horrified by their "mutant" kid. How many parents have kids with disabilities, but love and care for them regardless of their condition? If that "disability" is a super-power, wouldn't that make them love that kid even more?

If you are watching X2 again, or even for the first time (after seeing X-Men: First Class), you'll find the Magneto scenes even more enjoyable.
July 14, 2012
Mark Beckford

Super Reviewer

    1. Piotr Rasputin AKA Colossus: Hey I can help you.
    2. Wolverine: Help them.
    – Submitted by Clare M (12 months ago)
    1. Wolverine: Boyfriend? So how do you...?
    2. Bobby Drake/Iceman: [hesitating] We're working on that.
    – Submitted by Augusta M (20 months ago)
    1. Magneto: What's your name? [as he uses his powers to take away the lighter]
    2. John/Pyro: John
    3. Magneto: What's your real name John?
    4. John/Pyro: Pyro [as he uses his powers to take back the flame from the lighter]
    5. Magneto: Quite a talent you have there Pyro.
    6. John/Pyro: I can only manipulate the fire. [extinguishes the flame] I can't create it.
    7. Magneto: You are a god among insects. Never let anyone tell you different. [hands lighter back]
    – Submitted by Ben W (20 months ago)
    1. Magneto: How does it look from there Charles? Still fighting the good fight? From here it doesn't look like they're playing by your rules. Maybe it's time we play by theirs!
    – Submitted by Ben W (20 months ago)
    1. Magneto: Mr. Laurio, never trust a beautiful woman. Especially one who's interested in you.
    – Submitted by Ben W (20 months ago)
    1. Wolverine: I'll take my chances with him.
    – Submitted by Kaye E (21 months ago)
View all quotes (19)

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