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Research paper topic: Xmen Movie - 1218 words
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X-Men Movie I am critiquing the movie "X-men". This movie is based on a comic book and on an animated series. Both the animated series and the comic book revolve around mutants. These mutants often look human, however many look quite different than any normal human and also their powers are quite extraordinary. This creates one problem when converting to movie form. Make-up gadgets and special effects must be used so that our reality where the film is made may accurately reflect the reality where the film is set.
Also, the characters from the animated series and the comic books all have personalities and physical features that the actors in the film must try to match. This is a difficult thing to do. Not only must the actors physically look like the character concept but they must also be able to play the correct personality. The movie also must keep in context with the animated series and the books. The sources both share a timeline and general background knowledge and stories that the movie must conform with. When you add this onto the feat of making a movie that is aesthetically and engaging for audiences you have a very tall order. For the most part however, the movie was successful in many of these areas.
The special effects were well done in this movie. Storm's power over the elements is well displayed. I believe that it is one of the high points in the movie when we get to see storm use her powers. Cyclops's eye beam was also well done special effect wise. However the head gear that they used, while close enough to the original, was very bulky. This hindered the actors acting capability. Actors do a lot of acting with their faces and facial features.
Entire messages are sent with the eyes. This did create some problems for Cyclops in the movie. The headgear, while it was aesthetically pleasing, should have been reduced somewhat in size in order to better see the actor's features. Rouge's powers are well displayed as well. At this point in the timeline she has not yet gained her super strength or power of flight.
So that is one less problem. She still however has the power of pulling other mutant's powers from them. This tends to be a case of simply overlaying the special effects onto her from the original. However the only power that she really takes advantage of is wolverine's healing. The special effects on this part seemed realistic enough. However I have never seen that kind of healing in real life, so I really must take it for granted.
Speaking of Wolverine, his claws had a bit of a metamorphosis from the original sources. They were much bigger and thicker. This detracted slightly from the idea of the original sources. The claws appeared much more unwieldy however this did not seem to impair wolverine's use of them. And so it did work out well. The claws also brought up the question of how they fit into wolverine's hand, being so much bigger. However, wolverine's healing power did seem to work well. The mind powers of others in the movie were slightly under done. However there were a few scenes that focused on the mind powers of various individuals.
Mystique's costuming was very well done. So were her shape changing special effects. The various effects of her shape changing were believable looking and true to form with the various sources. Magneto's powers of magnetism were also well done. The sheer force of will and power behind Magneto was well represented by the special effects. The toad guy was an obvious extra, however, his tongue stretch effect was quite striking and caused the viewer to shrink back and go "ugh".
The rest of the minor roles were also well supplied with effects. Kitty Pryde's phase and Iceman's flower were well done special effect wise. The general acrobatics and fighting that went on were well choreographed. Many of the maneuvers were a little super-human, however, that is to be expected because of the nature of the film. There was a small amount of special effects used here as well and those effects were used well. The matching of actors to the various roles met with varying degrees of success.
Professor X was very well cast. The physical resemblance went well with the degree of character of the actor. Magneto too was well cast for the most part. However magneto seemed slightly childish in the movie. Storm and Wolverine were probably the best cast actors.
It is hard to find someone as tall as storm should be to be true to form. However, other than being slightly shorter than needed (and this was made up for with various camera angles), Storm was well done. The aloof and powerful attitude of storm was also well acted. Wolverine's feral attitude and looks were well matched to the sources. Mystique was well cast as well. It was a hard part to play, do to the fact that most of the acting for this role had to be done solely through facial features that were covered by the costume.
Rouge was fairly well cast. Do to the fact that this movie is set before she becomes an X-man it is therefore acceptable that she be younger and much less sure of herself. While this is not the Rouge that we usually see in the sources, it is easily one that will grow up to be her. Cyclops was a slight let down. Cyclops was a little young for this role, and the personality too childish. He did not give off the commanding aura of being the leader of the X-men.
It is true that there is a lot of tension between Wolverine and Cyclops, it was done, in a few places, in too childish a manner. The total effect was one of making Cyclops and Wolverine into two teenagers in a one-up contest. Over all the casting was done well. The casting was quite difficult also due to the fact that the sources portray the X-men as being larger than life. For instance the average human is six heads tall while the average X-men is eight.
However the X-men did tend to dominate over the few humans they encountered, making up for the loss in dynamisms. Most of the movie kept in context with the sources. The back-stories of the characters that were explored were mostly in sync with the sources. The only area where this was truly lacking was an obvious marketing attempt. The younger X-men that were at the academy at this point in time actually should have been long gone at this point. Both Kitty Pryde and Iceman for example were X-men long before Wolverine or Rouge. However as it is portrayed, there is even so much as a teenage romance blossoming between Rouge and Iceman.
This was obviously done for marketing purposes in wanting to include as many X-men in the movie as possible. However, if they decide to make a sequel they will have to address this problem or diverge further and further from the time line of the original source material. All in all I liked the movie though and I thought it was rather good. Film and Cinema.
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