Michael Fassbender also shows up as Magneto for some reason; the movie doesn't really need him and though he's good at what he does, he ultimately feels like a distraction. Dark Phoenix has a loose narrative with a predictable plot and cardboard villain. Dark Phoenix isn't especially ugly or upsetting, but it's no pleasure to sit through, either. You might smirk at scenes of the former Sansa Stark smiting unworthy men, or snort at the increasingly leaden dialogue spouted by Professor X. The X-Men, whose powers range from teleportation to controlling the weather, must save them.
The blue-skinned shape-shiftier Raven, aka Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), is in charge of the mission squad, and she warns Prof. It's rather embarrassingly scripted and acted out by a cast who, pretty much across the board, look like they'd rather be anywhere else, but at least it's not quite as bad as "X-Men Apocalypse", "X-Men Origins: Wolverine", or "X-Men: The Last Stand". A mysterious solar flare has crippled the shuttle and cut off all communications. A long held secret releases an uncontrollable anger that erupts in spectacular power. One detail that particularly amuses me is the characters' ages. Raising doubts in Beast (Nicholas Hoult) about his mentor's motives.
Simon Kinberg, who makes his feature directing debut after years as a series writer and producer, keeps the action lean, nearly brisk.
The X-Men preparing for battle in Dark Phoenix. "Her reaction to my death was so raw". It's laughably apparent that something happened to Jean in space.
"Dark Phoenix is a fairly watchable addition to a franchise that has felt stretched to breaking point". Imagine a film where this power hooks its feelers in a woman already prone to disaster, whose life is marred with tragedy of her own making, and who can't master her tidal wave emotions.
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The forces attacking protesters included the Rapid Support Force (RSF), a paramilitary force with a well-documented record of abuse.
But for Janssen, the question about the future of Jean Grey and her own future with the franchise is a little easier. Still, Dark Phoenix is not as much trainwreck as it is a slow-moving auto collision that ends up screeching to a halt right before it scratches the bumper in front of it. It feels like Jessica Chastain's character was cut or altered significantly in this process.
I will still be seeing Dark Phoenix, and our review of the film will be out Friday morning, because the X-Men will always be important to me and, with the exception of Apocalypse, I've never skipped one.
Jean is the focus of this film, grappling with her sense of belonging, her abilities and the powerful entity that has overtaken her. I've been pretty skeptical about Dark Phoenix's writer/director, Simon Kinberg, who also wrote The Last Stand, taking another go. The standoff at Jean Grey's house gets the redux treatment. And my guess is they will repurpose how they want to explore these characters. Unfortunately, there isn't much improvement on the second take.
Sticking close to Jean, Kinberg anchors her fast-evolving rage in the realisation that Charles has tampered with her memories. But for a series supposedly dedicated to the pleasure of superhero movies, "Dark Phoenix" somehow ends up illustrating their limits. That's a victory I'll take. Cut to 1992, and Jean (Sophie Turner) is now part of the X-Men under the guidance of Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) as they prove to humanity that mutants are here to help, not harm.