Drama. Western. Road movie. Logan is far more than just another superhero film, grounding the genre to satisfy a wider audience but not losing the charm and fun that’s made it such a success. Learning from the mistakes of DC, Logan creates a dark and cruel world without sacrificing colour or a sense of humour.
Closing the door on his definitive role, Hugh Jackman is finally allowed to unleash the ferocity and bloody carnage of the character trapped for so long by the blockbuster intention of the franchise. With Deadpool proving the box office potential of R rated superhero flicks, Logan goes full throttle with some of the most brutal violence you will see in a mainstream picture; blood soaked and torn limb from limb, the body count rises steadily throughout and finally allow us to see the obvious results of a manimal with 3 unbreakable claws. Director James Mangold brought a sophistication to The Wolverine that was shackled by the expectations of a family audience but here he creates a perfect portrayal of the X-Men character in a barren, hopeless future. Logan rises above a lot of its competition as it’s a character piece first and an action film second, using the brilliant fight sequences to compliment the splintered psyche of an older, broken Logan.
Wolverine has worked in the past as a father figure to the likes of Rogue but here it is most apparent in the form of Laura, a young mutant who drives the plot and proves to be just as savage and thrilling as Logan when it comes to taking out the enemy, as lacklustre as they may be. Jackman continues to be perfect as the titular mutant but the standout performance belongs undoubtedly to Sir Patrick Stewart as a very different Charles Xavier from the wise mentor we know; elderly and cranky, Xavier is both an object of pity and admiration as a source of both tragedy and comedic relief from the consistently angst ridden Logan. In terms of world building, Logan depicts a dark conclusion for the X-Men universe that is tragic but realistic; adding a layer of grittiness that sets it apart from the idealism of Marvel and the grime of DC.
Logan is a fanboy dream come true, sending off Hugh Jackman in a blaze of blood and guts while further creating hope for the future of the stagnating superhero genre. It’s gory, a tearjerker and, well, any film that gives Stephen Merchant an action movie one liner deserves at least some credit.