Posted on 6/02/06 05:10 PM
The movie is quite watchable and entertaining. Big screen viewing definitely recommended.
The underlying theme of imposing a cure on someone who may or may not need it is explored in several storylines: the politicians wanting to cure the mutants, Professor X "helping" Jean integrate, Magneto acting on his convinction that the mutants are the cure to the human civilization.
The old cast. Especially Famke Janssen, who pulled off "goddess" without really being given much in the way of dialogue/arc to work with.
The new cast. Kelsey Grammer, Shohreh Aghdashloo, and was that Vinnie Jones!?
While there are some nice character moments in the first half of the movie, they're nowhere nearly as substantial as in the first two movies. As the story progresses, characters are either sacrificed to plot advancement (esp. Magneto), insufficiently explained (esp. Jean/Phoenix), or just doing the action thing (esp. Storm).
Some scenes just seem awkward or pointless, e.g. Wolverine hearing Jean call out to him and then going after her only to get, erm, nowhere.
Killing off Cyclops for no apparent reason. (Cranky producer lashing out at the actor because he followed Singer to Superman Returns is not a reason, just evidence that logic gets a little psychedelic in Hollywood.)
The curing leitmotif taking on a sanctimonious note when all the curers end up being dealt with quite cruelly, to the point where the whole things gets heavily soaked in melodrama. Too much "poetic justice," if you will, with Xavier being killed by the thing he tried to suppress, Magneto losing his powers, and that politician guy being miraculously rescued by his son.
The scene where Wolverine kills Jean. On the one hand, her asking to be saved by the guy who brings out the Phoenix in her (as opposed to Scott, the controlled, clean, straight guy) adds an interesting nuance or two to the character's arc in the trilogy. On the other, with character development being shoved in the background, the build-up to that scene is missing in more ways than one, which makes it a wee bit out of left field and kind of out of proportion in terms of the emotional effect it's supposed to have.
All in all, the movie is not all that it could have been, but it's definitely worth watching.