Logan: A Superhero Tragedy

I saw Logan on it’s first Friday it was released. The theater was full of people and surprisingly, quite quiet(thank god). But as good as the screening was, I was just too in my own damn head. Often I found myself thinking about shit for school, or how the scene was written and a bunch of other over analysis about the filmmaking. Leaving the theater I felt indifferent about the whole experience, knowing I did watch a good movie and spent time with family, but knew I as a viewer wasn’t doing my job. So when class got canceled and someone suggested going to see Logan, I was onboard.

Logan was directed by James Mangold and stars Hugh Jackman as Logan, Patrick Steward as Charles Xavier, and Dafne Keen as Laura, and was written by Michael Green and David James Kelly. Right off the bat, I really loved this movie. Yeah, loved it. I really haven’t said that about a film in a long time. But this film, watching it for the second time when I’m fully relaxed and immersed, really blew me away. It’s exactly how to be gritty: don’t try to be gritty.What I mean by that is the writing allowed the film to be gritty and grounded into themes of death and loss while allowing room for the lighter themes of family and heroism. The use of violence and vulgar language paired well with the characters, even though years of PG-13 filtration.

This is where I want to talk about the story itself, where I may spoil some elements of the story, so beware.

This film made me question superhero movies. A lot of the most recent ones have been showcasing heroes on the up and up, or if not that story, the hardships they’ve faced, like the recent “Captain America: Civil War”. But we’ve never seen one where we see the hero on the down and out. And that’s where Logan innovates. Not only is it the only film I’ve seen where the hero ultimately dies, but it’s the only one I’ve seen that is openly aware where it’s heading and doesn’t have a problem letting the audience know. So what the film does is it defies the hero: his values, his family, his personality, and his story. The film asked who is Logan and why was he a hero? What made him a hero? And not only did the film show us who Logan was, but why he was who he was.

That brings me to the use of themes in films. Themes, like in novels, should be hanging in every chapter, keeping the story from spiraling into in-cohesiveness and fluttering about. Logan reminds audiences it’s themes over and over again, through mention of old and dead X-Men, Charles and Caliban’s deaths, and brutal murders of bad guys, that death is the ultimate antagonist of Logan. The story’s message is that no one can escape death, not even the man who thought he’ll never have to face it. The movie makes this message not only effective, but powerful with it’s great writing set ups and character building by the terrific Hugh Jackman.

I’m not a fan of the X-Men universe that Fox has set up, with exceptions of X-Men: Days of Future Past and Deadpool. I wasn’t ever the guy who was excited for new movies from the franchise, because I felt like they were all so weird and over saturated with characters. But Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine I’ve always liked, and probably my favorite X Man. And I’m happy that Fox really left the filmmakers to do their thing rather than budding in, because they really gave Hugh’s character a proper send off. So I’m really going to miss character, but I’m not going to be sad about his absence because of how great his finale was.

That’s all I got to say, besides if you haven’t seen Logan, go see it, it’s bloody awesome. I hope you guys enjoyed this blog, and if you did, feel free to like, share, and follow.

Have a great day!

-Jake Enemark

Photo Credit belongs to James Mangold

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