62- X Men: First Class [7.0]
As the first class discovers, harnesses, and comes to terms with their formidable powers, alliances are formed that will shape the eternal war between the heroes and villains of the X-Men universe.
X Men: First Class succeeds in a fashion that Bryan Singer’s films never did, as the thematic elements that make the comic book characters so interesting are more subtlety dealt with than the manner in which Singer smashed them over your head. Sure, there are characters (literally) uncomfortable in their own skin, saying pride-oriented slogans (“Mutant and proud”), but First Class leans heavier on dealing with the question of superiority or inferiority in relation to a mutated species.
First Class is not without its cheesy moments, but its inherent to the source material. Thankfully, unlike so many other comic book films, the tone is played fairly straight and there isn’t a lot of winking at the audience at some of the more inherently sillier elements. The stand out performances belong to the two leads in Michael Fassbender as Magneto and James McAvoy as Charles Xavier. The film would collapse on itself without the strength of their dynamic, and thankfully, they manage to elevate the material. (The same can not be said of Zoe Kravitz, who can not act her way out of a box. Or any other object, I’d imagine)
Hopefully, Matthew Vaughn will revisit these characters and take them to a different decade, where other political and social issues could serve as a strong background for future films.