logan

Logan’s Travels with Charley (and Wolver-tween): Yes, No, Maybe

(Spoilers? Just some mild ones, bub.)

Yes, it’s good to see Wolverine in action again. Pairing him with a mini-me (or mini-him… er, actually a female mini-him) smelled like a big fat gimmick upon first glance (or whiff) but Wolver-tween is interesting, entertaining… and jarring. Seeing her decapitate an enemy was oddly refreshing. Why?

11 year old Dafne Keen accomplished what Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones couldn't: the female reboot of an iconic male character you wouldn't mind seeing on film again.
11 year old Dafne Keen accomplished what Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig, Kate McKinnon, and Leslie Jones couldn’t: the female reboot of an iconic male character you wouldn’t mind seeing on film again.

No, Boblius doesn’t suffer from bloodlust. Wolver-tween’s carnage and the rest of the film’s mature content all justify Logan‘s R rating. Reportedly, Hugh Jackman took a pay cut to keep the violence intact. (In case this sounds confusing, let Boblius explain: The more restrictive the rating, the smaller the prospective audience therefore the smaller the potential box office receipts.) By slashing his own salary, Jackman made the film’s harsh content less of a financial risk to the studio. But…

…maybe Jackman played the free market to his (and the film’s) advantage. He likely got a bigger cut of the box office gross after taking a smaller paycheck upfront. If the film performed well enough he could have his violence-cake and eat it too. According to our friends at Box Office Mojo, Logan‘s grosses currently stand at more than four times its production budget. Jackman is eating plenty of violence-cake right now.

Patrick borrows the "swan song" hat Stallone used in Creed for his last appearance as Professor X.
Patrick borrows the “swan song” hat Stallone used in Creed for his last appearance as Professor X.

Yes, it was good to see Sir Patrick Stewart re-embrace his baldness for one last adventure as Professor X. He was allowed to stretch different acting muscles with Charles Xavier as more of a Sophia Petrillo this go-around than a Dumbledore. But Stewart must be sad to see the X-men gravy train come to its terminus. He probably made more money acting from a wheelchair in 5 movies (yes nerds, Boblius is aware of his scattered cameos in other X titles) than Raymond Burr did in 200 episodes of Ironside. Boblius has had mostly praise for Logan so far but was it a perfect film?

No. There were a few tropes it would have been nice not to have to see again. An evil corporation run by a mad scientist? Yawn. But Boblius is glad Logan gave us a respite from William Stryker as the X-men’s utility villain. And what’s with Canada as Shangri-La? The mutant kids will be safe once they set foot in Bob and Doug McKenzie’s “Great White North?” In this alternate universe is Justin Trudeau the successor to Professor X? Eye roll time. If you asked Boblius to handicap a fight between Donald Pierce’s Reavers and a squad of Mounties, his money’s on the cyborgs. (No offense to Boblius’s Canadian relatives including an uncle who once appeared as a Canadian Marlboro Man in a print ad – true story.)

Jackman goes out as Wolverine while maintaining his cool. The same couldn't be said for Roger Moore's latter Bond movies...
Jackman goes out as Wolverine while maintaining his cool. The same couldn’t be said for Roger Moore’s latter Bond movies…

Maybe Jackman could have squeezed out a few more Wolverine movies. If he had, he would have become the Roger Moore of the X-men franchise. Moore made enough scratch from his Bond movies to retire to Switzerland and barely appear on film in the past 30 years. He was entitled (before he was entitled as “Sir” Roger) to make as much he could playing 007 but his last two performances – which featured Bond disguised as a clown and surfing on icebergs – sank the series for several years. Jackman has avoided this mistake which will sustain both his and his signature character’s viability for some time to come.


Questions for our health:

-Would you actually watch a Hunger Games movie if they used the kids from Logan?

-Who would you let Marvel recast as Wolverine in the post-Jackman era?

-Who could Marvel recast as Wolverine which would make a fanboy’s head actually explode?