(KCBS) – KCBS Entertainment Editor Jan Wahl reviews the prequel to the X-Men series starring James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence and Kevin Bacon.
X-MEN: FIRST CLASS (PG-13)
Another big summer surprise..not as brilliant or bright as the one Woody Allen just gave us with Midnight in Paris, but just as surprising as a prequel in this Marvel Comic Mutant franchise. As someone who completely ignores this series, I was thrilled to sit through a good, fun movie. We meet James McAvoy, one of my favorite actors, as a gentle super genius. He brings everyone up to his level, inspiring hunky Michael Fassbender as the early Magneto and Kevin Bacon, another fine actor who is so hateful you want to rush the screen and destroy him. Director Matthew Vaughn and four credited screenwriters keep the story first, action second, but don’t worry, action freaks, there is more than enough. Much of this interesting and popcorn fun movie takes place during the Cuban Missile Crisis, like Woody Allen’s film set in 1920′s Paris, maybe this X-Men will send historically illiterate people to look up the Bay of Pigs, the Iron Curtain and other relevant backstory. A high rating of four hats..who knew? What a good summer surprise.
BLANK CITY (not rated)
1970′s New York City was the place to be for wildly imaginative, rebellious filmmakers. This documentary about them recreates the world of primitive yet colorful and bizarre films, trying to be authentic to the experience of the lives and artistry of the auteur. The movies often do not play like anything of lasting value, but hats off to the people who tried to tell their vision on film in a new, gutsy way.
SEE RIGHT NOW: MIDNIGHT IN PARIS, CAVE OF FORGOTTEN DREAMS, A.C.T.’S TALES OF THE CITY