X-Men: Dark Phoenix is a superhero film directed by Simon Kinberg; it belongs to 20th Century Fox’s now defunct XCU (X-Men cinematic universe), taking place after the events of X-Men Apocalypse and is based on the Phoenix Saga from Marvel Comics.
Prior to writing this review I had been putting off watching this for a second time, it is a horrible film. Can I just ask the question before we get into the review, who thought letting Simon Kinberg a man who can’t even write films lead alone direct them, direct this was a good idea? All of the good X-Men films had very little involvement from this hack, or if he was involved, he was heavily reigned in by the director of whichever movie he was working on.
That said let’s get into the review.
First off, the action scenes in this film are atrocious, when you realise that they belong to a block-buster superhero film they seem even worse. They are a mad rush of CGI paired with the weakest blandest fight scenes you might ever see in your life, it is so lifeless and boring, it makes you wonder if they gave up on this film before it even started filming, and Fox wanted to release it just so it would cost, new franchise owners, Disney money; makes you think.
Secondly the acting, I can’t even bring myself to really go into this, so I will only talk about 2 noticeable bad performances, the rest are painfully average and feel so underdeveloped that you begin to question whether they even exist. James McAvoy as Professor X and Michael Fassbender as Magneto are the only 2 okay performances and even then, the incredibly bad, prequel era George Lucas esque bad, writing takes away anything it can from either performance.
The first of the woeful performances is Sophie Turner as Jean Grey. If I had to put together a list of the worst performances, or worst actors of 2019 Turner would surely be on it. I understand she was in Game Of Thrones and that was popular, empathies on was, but that doesn’t mean she is a good actress. Her performance has as much range and emotion as a bin bag floating down the side of the road, she can’t maintain an accent and as such it keeps slipping, she just can’t act, she can’t and if Hollywood learns one lesson from last year it should be to dump Sophie Turner as fast as they can.
The second performance and perhaps the more controversial pick is Jennifer Lawrence as Mystique. Never before in the history of film has it been clearer that an actor has only been in a film because they were contractually obligated to be. It is clear from the very first moment she appears on screen, in her human form because Lawrence doesn’t like the makeup, she is being payed millions to wear, that she doesn’t want to be there. Her now infamous line of “you should change the name to X-Women”, made me both cringe and feel annoyed at the same time, and shows everything that is wrong with this film.
Overall, I have to say bravo to Dark Phoenix as it actually made me like the rotting carcass that is X-Men: The Last Stand so well done for that!
McAvoy and Fassbender are okay.
Sophie Turner shouldn’t be cast.
Jennifer Lawrence should have left when she stopped caring, they should have let her go.
Someone should have stopped Simon Kinberg from ripping the X-Men apart.
The overuse of CGI hurts.
Reviewed by Luke