Every X-Men Film Explained

Dark Phoenix marks the 12th film in the X-Men franchise.  While there is still one more X-Men film in the can, this will be our last journey with this set of characters.  Now that Disney owns both Fox and Marvel, they will supposedly reboot the franchise at some point and make it part of the Marvel universe.

Until then, all signs point to Dark Phoenix being the natural conclusion of this chapter of the franchise. As we prepare to say goodbye, here’s a brief primer on the first eleven films to help refresh your memory.  

 

The Original Trilogy

  • X-Men   The movie that introduced the X-Men characters to mainstream audiences.  Charles Xavier — founder of the Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters — and his fellow peace-loving mutants, try to stop Magneto and his Brotherhood of Mutants from mutating world leaders to bring about worldwide acceptance of mutants.    

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Charles Xavier (aka Professor X), Magneto, Wolverine, Rogue, Mystique, Jean Grey, Cyclops, Storm,  Sabretooth

  • X2  (AKA X-Men United) Heroes and villains work together to stop Wolverine’s creator, William Stryker, from using Cerebro as a weapon to find and kill all mutants.  

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Nightcrawler, Iceman, Pyro, Lady Deathstrike

  • X-Men:  The Last Stand  The first attempt at telling the Dark Phoenix story from the comics.  A drug company found a cure suppressing the mutant gene. This divides the mutant community.  Magneto reforms the Brotherhood and with a resurrected Jean Grey in Dark Phoenix form at his side, declares war on humans.  A final battle between the mutants ensues in San Francisco.

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Angel, Beast, Juggernaut, Kitty Pryde, Colossus, Callisto, Multiple Man

The Wolverine Trilogy

  • X-Men Origins: Wolverine   Wolverine’s origin story.  We learn more about his relationship with William Stryker, how he got those adamantium claws, and why he doesn’t remember his past.  This is the only movie where Gambit appears. Ryan Reynolds plays a weak version of Deadpool in this film and doesn’t even get to use the character’s trademark sarcasm.  (He redeemed this in his own feature film later.)

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Gambit, Deadpool , Blob, John Wraith, Chris Bradley, Agent Zero

  • The Wolverine   After the events of The Last Stand, Wolverine returns to Japan to protect a friend’s granddaughter.  

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Yukio and Viper  

  • Logan  Wolverine and Xavier, now old men, try to protect a young girl with powers similar to Logan’s, in a world on the brink of destruction.   

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Laura

The New Trilogy

  • X-Men: First Class  A soft reboot of the franchise.  New actors play younger versions of the characters.  This is an origin story for several X-Men characters including Mystique, Magneto, Beast, and Charles Xavier, set during the Cuban Missile Crisis.  We find out why Xavier is in a wheelchair.

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Emma Frost, Azazel, Havok, Darwin, Sebastian Shaw, Banshee, Angel Salvadore, Riptide

  • X-Men:  Days of Future Past   Wolverine goes back in time to 1973 to stop the mutant-killing Sentinels from being invented.  This movie unites the cast from the original trilogy with the cast from First Class .

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Quicksilver, Bishop, Blink, Sunspot, Warpath

  • X-Men: Apocalypse   The first mutant awakens after thousands of years and puts together an apocalyptic team to create a new world order.  Xavier and Mystique must find a way to stop him.

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Apocalypse, Psylocke, Jubilee, Caliban

Deadpool Duology (And Once Upon A Deadpool)

  • Deadpool  The origin story of Deadpool.  Deadpool seeks revenge on the man who disfigured him.  Woe to the man known as Francis.

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Negasonic Teenage Warhead, Ajax, Angel Dust

  • Deadpool 2  To honor the memory of a loved one, Deadpool tries to save an orphan mutant from time traveling soldier Cable. 
  • There’s even a PG-13 version! <— With 15 minutes of new scenes! Read our review of Once Upon a Deadpool

Significant X-men/mutants introduced:   Domino and Firefist

 

The final X-Men film, The New Mutants, is slated to finally get a theatrical release next April.  Previous trailers suggest it will have a different tone than other X-Men movies and may even be a horror film.   As the title suggests, it will not feature Wolverine, Magneto, Mystique, or any other mutants we’ve come to love, but rather will feature a new cast of characters.  

Whether you need Peetimes for the latest superhero movies, need to know if there’s anything after the credits, or just want to stay up to date on the latest movie news, RunPee has you covered.  Follow us on Twitter @RunPee. Get Peetimes from our app to avoid missing the best parts of your favorite movies including Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Toy Story 4, and Men in Black: International.

 

Is Deadpool in the Avengers’ Universe?

Movie Review – Logan

Movie review : X-Men First Class

X-Men: Days of Future Past – movie review

X-Men: Apocalypse (movie review)

Movie Review – Once Upon A Deadpool

Hugh Jackman Admits He Never Knew What A Wolverine Was

high jackman as wolverine from X-men
Honey Badger don’t care. And neither does Wolverine.

Hugh Jackman, AKA X-Men’s Wolverine, admitted to Stephen Colbert on The Late Show that he’d studied wolves before his first film with the X-Men. He mistakenly thought a wolverine was a type of wolf. [pullquote position=”left”]So, kudos to an actor who immersed himself in zoology for a part.  And now I have to see the original X-Men again and watch for the subtleties of his ‘lone wolf’ portrayal.[/pullquote]

For those of you who also don’t know, a wolverine is a real animal, native to arctic and subarctic areas (see the connection now with Logan and Alaska?), and renowned for having a super bad temper when provoked. If you corner a wolverine, it will go bananas on you, fighting like the kind of berserker we’ve seen in Jackman’s Wolverine.

So it worked out…but to be honest, I think the better berserker mutant was done with Logan’s mini-me, Laura (from the excellent film, “Logan“). [pullquote position=”right”]That little girl had the kind of feral, remorseless ferocity intended to evoke the real wolverine deal. Less lone wolf, and more like a small, cuddly creature that will cut you.[/pullquote]

This 3 minute video, for example, is nuts. Watch as an annoyed wolverine takes on a black bear, a creature no one else in the the history of forever would think of pestering. By the end, you’re kind of feeling bad for the bear. You go, you small ferocious weirdo:

A wolverine is a carnivore in the Mustelidae family, existing alongside other easily irked animals like the weasel, the skunk, and infamously, the bizarre honey badger. And remember, Honey Badger don’t care. After seeing this viral, strange, and very funny video, I wonder how Jackman would have felt if his character was called Logan, the Honey Badger:

This last 4.26 minute video calls wolverines the honey badgers of the north, pulling it all together. It’s a lot of fun. And educational! Always a great combo:

According to an interview with The Economic Times, Mr. Jackman is a fan of the RunPee app, and likes to check his own movies to see if his scenes get turned into Peetimes. We love hearing this kind of thing. If I was a celebrity, I’d check my films on the app too. 😉

Read our RunPee movie review of Logan, and a link to all articles on the blog tagged with X-Men

Movie Review – Logan

 

 

 

Stan Lee – His Favorite Marvel Characters

Stan-Lee-spider-man-with-fans
Stan Lee with fans dressed as their favorite supes…with his true love: Spider-Man

There’s no doubt Stan Lee, often together with frequent co-inventor/artist Jack Kirby, created some of the most beloved, enduring, and influential superhero characters.  Without Lee, there would be no Marvel Universe, at least not with the faces by which we know it. [pullquote]Lee was a man with a mission of hope for millions of kids, giving a heroic voice to the underdogs, the alienated, and the disenfranchised.[/pullquote]

Here are a few of Lee’s apparent favorite superhero creations:

  1. Lee seemed to identify most with Spider-Man, an emotional, talkative, and sometimes naive teen. According to Quora: “Spider Man symbolizes the little guy and that appeals a great deal to Stan. I’m not saying that Stan doesn’t love any other creation because that isn’t true. He has love for all of his characters that he brought to life. I just think that Spider Man has a special place in his heart. If you look at some of the publications and advertisements you will see Stan with Spider Man quite often.”
    It doesn’t hurt that this character became the face of Marvel for many years.
  2. Dr. Banner/The Hulk -[pullquote position=”right”] Banner was a man tormented by an often violent inner volatility. His human form contained a man a science, characterized by rational  intellect — never knowing when he would lose his cool to become an overpowered child-like rage monster.[/pullquote] He’s the personification of the ultimate battle between the Id and the Ego. AV Club reports: “There’s definitely an element of wish fulfillment in the Hulk for readers that wish they could let themselves fully give in to their anger—my appreciation for the character developed during my closeted teenage years—but Lee and Kirby were clear early on that this was a curse for Banner rather than a gift.”
  3. Black Panther – At the height of the Civil Rights movement, Lee created the first eponymous African superhero, starting with King T’Chaka, eventually  passing the role to his son King T’Challa. [pullquote]A previously under-served, large section of the world’s population could finally find superheroes who looked like them — an entire paradisaical high-tech country of them, in fact — in the secret cities and unspoiled countryside of Wakanda.[/pullquote] The Rolling Stone reports: “An entire generation of children will now know that a black superhero, society, imagination and power can exist right alongside Peter Parker, Steve Rogers, and Bruce Wayne. An entire generation of children will not know what it feels like to not see themselves reflected back on costume racks, coloring books or movie screens. We’re at a pivotal time where these characters and stories are coming not out of permission or obligation, but necessity.”
  4. For The X-Men, as an ensemble, this might be cheating, but he loved these fleshed out characters, who tried to do the right thing in a world that didn’t want them. [pullquote position=”right”]They were flawed but regular people at heart, caught up in circumstances where they were forced to make a choice: to look out for regular humans, or to look out for fellow Mutants.[/pullquote] In theory, the choice should be easy (both sides could reap the rewards of working together), but in reality it was like forcing opposite poles of magnets to align. You can’t help but feel a sense of tragedy for both sides. As a child, I self-identified as a mutant, or perhaps as someone from another world, impersonating as a human. According to the AV Club the young mutants were “a bunch of awkward, uncertain outcasts, drawing strength from each other in order to get through life in a world that didn’t especially like them, who just happened to have superpowers to boot. For a pre-teen who often felt like the odd one out in school, it was a lightning bolt, a volcanic eruption that ripped open the pop culture I had been consuming and showed me the way to a different one, one that existed inside the pages of comics. The heroes were fascinatingly flawed, all of them given to social isolation in one form or another, and it spoke to me in a way few things have. The symbolism of the mutant heroes is powerful, which is why they’ve been used as an allegory for just about every marginalized group at this point (and were created by Lee with the express intent of functioning as such).”
[pullquote]This week, the galaxy lost a voice of vast imagination and fun, who held deeply felt humanitarian roots, shaping millions of young lives through the colorful comicbook medium. [/pullquote]He also influenced modern adults, bringing all-too-human characters to the big screen, reshaping the superhero landscape indelibly from anything we’d seen before. If you’ve enjoyed the 20+ film saga of the MCU, or the X-Men movies, you can’t help but be touched by Stan Lee’s contribution to entertainment, and feel a deeper understanding of ourselves.

We at RunPee love superheroes, clearly identifying with the underdogs who decided to do something for the world, even if it’s as simple as helping everyday people in small ways, one bladder at a time.

Here’s a couple of our recent Stan Lee articles, and one cool quiz: 

RIP Stan Lee – you will be missed

Quiz – Learn About Marvel Studio’s Great Stan Lee

Stan Lee – His Marvel Cameos are a Secret Character

Every Stan Lee Cameo in the Marvel Cinematic Universe

 

 

Movie Rewatch Review – Deadpool

Chimichangas for everyone
MAXIMUM EFFORT!

What is it about popular films on TV and their commercials? It seems the more beloved the film, the greater the number of ads.  Watching Deadpool with my mother last night, the commercials came hot and heavy every few minutes — I’m positive at least 45 minutes of runtime were aggressively selling something. As opposed to Deadpool himself, who only sold laughs, naughty references, and gonzo violence. But since one can DVR television these days, we fast forwarded our way through the barrage.

My mother had never seen Deadpool before, and normally doesn’t like superhero films. When the Marvel credits flipped through, she almost deleted the film right there. But I promised this was was super maxi fun, so she watched it, and even liked it.[pullquote] The magic of Deadpool is that it’s so clever and cool and funny that even non-geeks enjoy it.[/pullquote]

All this lead up disguises the point that I didn’t take a lot of notes while watching. Normally I fill up several pages of thoughts, asides, and commentary. This one, not so much: I hated taking my eyes off the screen for even a moment. The notes I did scrawl were written so fast they’re illegible. [pullquote position=”right”]Deadpool has an endless stream of visual gags, Easter-eggs, in-jokes, out-jokes, and cinematically cool moments, starting with that amazing time-stopped opening sequence that must be seen to be believed.[/pullquote] And then re-seen, over and over again, just to be sure to catch all the special touches in the background/foreground/everywhere, and firmly plant Angel in the Morning in your head all day.

The only time you can really take a break from devouring the screen is while Wade Wilson is being tortured…which is also, by the end of that sequence, the only scene were Wade stops cracking wise. (Sad face. But he gets his groove back soon enough.)

I did notice I few gags I missed on previous viewings. A good one: Deadpool’s merc bar is called Sister Margaret’s Home For Wayward Girls, which spoofs on that other sign we see in front of the X-Men Mansion (Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters). [pullquote]In another scene, Deadpool references a good time for a Pee Break, which of course we at RunPee appreciate.[/pullquote] Francis mentions sewing Wade’s mouth shut, which calls back to that unfortunate incarnation of Mr. Pool in Wolverine: Origins (shudder). And lastly, Deadpool predicts his own future movie franchise when he talks about how superhero origin stories (Deadpool 1) are followed by a sequel (Deadpool 2), which is then turned into full larger ensemble team effort (X-Force is coming. Lord help us).

A common question is where does Deadpool fit in the Marvel pantheon? The answer: wherever you want him. Really. As a character who name drops his own actor and regularly breaks the 4th Wall (ie: talks to the audience, just like Ferris Bueller — which he also references), he fits into our own viewing universe. He hangs out with X-Men (in both timelines, even if he can’t keep the continuity straight), and even leaves hints that the Marvel Cinematic Universe exists.

We’ve covered Deadpool, both 1 and 2, in some detail here on RunPee, and happily crowed about the upcoming PG-13 Deadpool 2 coming this Christmas season (with 15 minutes of new footage!) Rejoice, my friends! MAXIMUM EFFORT!

Movie Grade: A+

More Deadpool Articles on RunPee.com – 

Every Deadpool post — and we have a lot of them — is here.  <—– Click it.  You know you want to.

The Deadpool Before Christmas – A PG-13 Version: New Footage, New Film

Is Deadpool in the Avengers’ Universe?

Every Hilarious Deadpool 2 Trailer

Deadpool 2 Outtakes, Bloopers, and Banned Jokes

Deadpool Musical Parody – Beauty and the Beast

[pullquote]If you’re a Disney Princess fan, you might not exactly appreciate Disney’s Prince of Gab, Deadpool.[/pullquote] And here we get a little in-joke about the other Disney Marvel heroic ensembles: with nods to the Avengers, X-Men, and…Betsy? I don’t know which franchise Betsy’s from.

Also, we learn a new term (presumably not new to comic book fans) — the X-Force. The official trailers seem to be about assembling Deadpool’s X-Force entourage, but the term isn’t part of common parlance just yet. I’m sure it will be by this weekend, when Deadpool spurts across America (<—- sorry for that off-color joke. Deadpool’s naughty-ness “rubs off”...)

Beauty and the Beast fans will recognize this as the live-action Gaston Song, which is great in itself, and included below for comparisony fun. Both movies are officially Disney nowadays, so it shouldn’t offend too much. Plus, the news is that Deadpool the Musical won a Webby Award for Best Writing. It’s a nugget of sweet, sweet weirdness:

Read our review of the live action version of Beauty and the Beast, and every Deadpool article on RunPee.com.

Finally, here are some links to both movie soundtracks:

 

New Wolverine Takes Up Claws for Next Movie

Remember Laura, the little girl clone of Wolverine from the great X-Men film Logan? There is talk of a Logan spinoff to follow Laura’s story.  I don’t think that move would come as much of a surprise. They left the ending wide open with the new mutant kids going to Eden, and the actress made for a memorable breakout character in her sensitive, yet vicious feral child.

Stealing the show from Hugh Jackman? Wait, even harder – from Sir Patrick Stewart? What? Well, she did.

So, yeah — I do expect we will see more from this actress. The X-Men franchise hasn’t been reluctant to keep a good thing going (sometimes long after it stopped being good).

Movie Review – Logan

    Grade: A+
    Dan writes: I just watched the movie, so I’ll think about it some more before I write a full review. Until then, I can easily say that this is by far the best X-Man movie. (Not that that is a high bar to clear.) The story, dialog, acting, pacing, and fighting were all extraordinary.
    You can probably tell from the credits that this is an emotional movie. I’m man enough to admit that I cried more than once. And the ending… Yeah, I’m getting misty just thinking about it.
    Jill, RunPee Wife here: With Dan in Hong Kong, I’ll expand on the Logan review.
    So. The X-Man franchise has been wildly inconsistent. Some of the films in the series were dreadful (hey there, Last Stand and Apocalypse). And some were extremely competent and enjoyable (X-Man 2, plus First Class and Days of Future Past). The original X-Man movie was genre-defining, giving us a live-action superhero ensemble with real storytelling. It provided a mold for future superhero films to follow. There was nothing really like it before. And, we got our first taste of Wolverine, and the world fell instantly in love with the brutal, endearing character.
    …And then…there were the Wolverine stand-alone films, which were problematic. The first one was stricken from cannon. Not sure if the second was similarly disowned. But Hugh Jackman so owned the iconic role that really, no one should be surprised they went in for thirds.
    The difference this time is astounding. Logan is a perfect movie. It’s character-driven, a drama. The stakes are thankfully small, and so is the focus. It doesn’t even feel like a superhero flick – it takes more cues from Westerns (Unforgiven springs to mind, and Lonesome Dove; Shane is specifically homaged). It’s also a traveling buddy film, with Jackman and the always fantastic Patrick Stewart playing brilliantly off each other. Lastly, it is a movie about family – even with such three damaged individuals as Wolverine, Professor X, and newcomer Laura. I completely bought into Laura: she embodies the feral child we would expect on learning her background. Her fierceness was bold and exciting – violently gleeful – and also deeply realized. Kudos to this young actress  – she completely holds her own against the two grizzled veterans.
    Where Logan succeeds the most is in execution of a sunset arc for a really broken character – a man who has sometimes been a hero, and sometimes just a wild thing. You feel the real emotional weight of this movie, from the first three minutes, to the final moments; nothing that ultimately happens here should come as a shock to fans.
Amazingly though, even non-fans can jump right in, with no prior X-Man knowledge. That is a rare thing. Try taking a newbie to an Avengers film (and I love the Avengers). I saw Logan with a Muggle, and she cried right along with me. Which is also to say: bring tissues. There’s humor here, and some very cute moments, but this isn’t a happy film. It is an ending. And I don’t know where this will fit into X-Man cannon – since they established time-travel is a thing, anything can be changed – but neither do I care. Logan is just right, where and as it is.
    Thank you, Hugh Jackman, for providing the universe with an unforgettable character, and having the integrity to not sell your arc short in the end. And thank you, too, for publicly admitting you love the RunPee app. We love you right back.