Editor’s note: This review was first published May 23, 2014.
‘Days of Future Past’ a superb addition to ‘X-Men’ franchise
Time is a wonderous, infuriating concept. It flows in one direction, forever immutable. Until we throw a pebble into that stream, forever altering lives and events in ways immeasurable and unforeseeable. The infinite outcomes stemming from changing one moment in time — say, killing a mutant-threatening human, causing him to become a martyr against mutantkind, resulting in a dystopian future where mutants are hunted and humans are herded like cattle — can cause a migraine something fierce.
So we’ll leave the mechanics of space-time travel to those with the desire to try to unravel those complexities. Instead, we’ll focus on the sheer excellence that is “X-Men: Days of Future Past,” a brilliant, emotionally captivating addition to the “X-Men” film franchise.
Chocked full of dark humor, unrelenting wit and an underlying gravitas centering on the ability — no, the need, really — to combat hate and fear with hope and understanding (and maybe a superpower or two), “DoFP” pulls together that which makes the “X-Men” story so resonate. Because, like its predecessor comics at their best, “DoFP” doesn’t focus on the fist-to-claw brawls. These battles are much more meaningful, much deeper and philosophical, cutting to the core of who we are as people, and who we are as humankind.
Five history-changing stars out of five, and a critic’s pick.
P.S. — Stay for the after-credits scene for a glimpse into what “X-Men: Apocalypse,” set for a 2016 release, will be about.