(director: Bryan Singer; screenwriters: Simon Kinberg/story by Bryan Singer, Simon Kinberg, Michael Dougherty & Dan Harris; cinematographer: Newton Thomas Sigel; editor: John Ottman; music: John Ottman; cast: James McAvoy (Professor Charles Xavier), Michael Fassbender (Erik Lehnsherr / Magneto), Jennifer Lawrence (Raven / Mystique), Nicholas Hoult (Hank McCoy / Beast), Oscar Isaac (En Sabah Nur / Apocalypse), Hugh Jackman (Wolverine), Rose Byrne (Moira MacTaggert), Kodo Smit-McPhee (Kurt Wagner / Nightcrawler), Tye Sheridan (Scotty Summers/Cyclops), Sophie Turner (Jean Grey), Ben Hardy (Angel), Alexandra Shipp (Storm), Oliva Munn (Psylocke); Runtime: 136; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producers: Simon Kinberg/Bryan Singer/Hutch Parker/Lauren Shuler Donner; 20th Century Fox; 2016)


Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz

This is the fourth directing venture by Bryan Singer (“Excalibur”/”Mockingbird Lane”/”X-Men: Days of Future Past”) of this Marvel comic franchise film of 20th Century Fox, and his magic touch with the franchise seems to have disappeared. This one is set in 1983, as scripted by Simon Kinberg. It has its trite and over-extended story grow overstuffed even if the visuals remain pleasing.

We observe that the villain Apocalypse (Oscar Isaac), an Egyptian god, has awakened after 5600 years of sleep¬† and wants to destroy the world to give it a fresh start with him running things. Apocalypse proceeds with his plans and teleports the world’s nukes to outer space, and he recruits disheartened superpower mutant Magneto (Michael Fassbender), living in Poland as a married factory worker, to help cleanse mankind. The good guy Professor X (James McAvoy), the mutant teacher at the School for Gifted Children, and his teaching colleague Hank McCoy/Beast (Nicholas Hoult), oppose the madman.

Meanwhile we follow the dark story lines of Storm (Alexandra Shipp), Angel (Ben Hardy), and Psylocke (Oliva Munn). There’s an unneeded cameo from Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) And also amnesia suffering CIA agent Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne) is back.

It’s up to Raven/Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), Hank McCoy/Beast, Professor X, and all the other good mutants like Cyclops (Tye Sheridan), Nightcrawler (Kodi Smit-McPhee) and Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) to save the world.

The production might be seamless, but the comic book film failed to move me. Its Auschwitz scene, with Magnento, left me cringing at how tasteless it was.

X-Men: Apocalypse

REVIEWED ON 5/27/2016       GRADE: C+