Film historians will tell you that the current superhero domination of the movies began in 2000 with the release of the first X-Men movie. It's amazing how things have grown over the past 13 years. Last time I popped the first X-Men into my DVD player I was taken aback at how...small it is compared to the superhero films that have come since. It's almost a quiet character piece, with some very small action scenes.
But here we are now, 13 years later, and the seventh film (yes, I'm counting the two Wolverine solo films) in the franchise comes out next year, X-Men: Days of Future Past. Based on the legendary X-Men storyline of the same name, Days of Future Past begins in a dystopian future, where giant, mutant-hunting robots called Sentinels are on the verge of eliminating mutants once and for all. The Resistance, composed of the X-Men and their enemies, come up with a desperate plan: send one of their own back in time, and prevent this future timeline from happening.
In the original comic, it was Kitty Pryde who was sent back in time. In this movie version, it's Wolverine, because as Marvel discovered in the mid-1990s, everything's better with Wolverine!
Damn near everyone who's been in an X-Men movie is back for this. Hugh Jackman is Wolverine (of course), Patrick Stewart and James McAvoy are back as old and young Professor Xavier, Ian McKellan and Michael Fassbender are back as old and young Magneto. For the present X-Men, Halle Berry is back as Storm, Anna Paquin is back as Rouge, Shawn Ashmore is back as Iceman, and Ellen Page is back as Kitty Pryde. For the past X-Men, Nicholas Hoult is back as Beast, Lucas Till is back as Havoc, and Jennifer Lawrence is back as Mystique.
For new characters, we've got Peter Dinklage as Bolivar Trask, the scientist who invented the Sentinels. Omar Sy is on board as Bishop, and Evan Peters is Quicksilver.
Having Quicksilver in it is interesting, as Quicksilver is also a longtime member of The Avengers, and he's already been announced as being in The Avengers: Age of Ultron as well. Kevin Feige, the head of Marvel Studios, says that Quicksilver can be used for The Avengers on two conditions: in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, they can't mention that Quicksilver is a mutant and/or Magneto's son. It was kind of hoped that, as a great Easter egg for fans, Quicksilver would be played by the same actor in both Days of Future Past and Avengers: Age of Ultron, but sadly, no. Aaron-Taylor Johnson will be playing Quicksilver in Age of Ultron.
But I digress. Behind the scenes, the big news is that Bryan Singer, the man who started this franchise with X-Men and X2, finally returns to the director's chair. Singer was originally going to direct X-Men: First Class, but scheduling conflicts with his fantasy epic Jack the Giant Slayer meant he had to bow out. Singer still got a co-writer credit for First Class, though, and he and his company Bad Hat Harry Production produced it.
Enough of this preamble, let's look at the trailer, shall we?
That looks very interesting. We don't see any Sentinels yet (darn), but we do get the characters. All those familiar faces again! And it looks very quiet, very moody, very character-based. Much like the beginning.
X-Men: Days of Future Past hits theatres May 23, 2014.