X-Men: The Last Stand
Entertainment: +2
Acceptability: -2

Cast: Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Ian McKellen, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, Kelsey Grammer, Rebecca Romijn, James Marsden, Shawn Ashmore, Aaron Stanford, Vinnie Jones, and Patrick Stewart. Sci/fi action. Written by Zak Penn & Simon Kinberg. Directed by Brett Ratner.

Its been a while since Ive read a comic book. So, somebody tell me, when did Tennessee Williams start penning for D.C. Comics? I remember cartoon action heroes in capes defending the defenseless and seeking the American way. But both the recent Fantastic Four and now the X-Men prefer the introspective side of its glass menagerie. This group displays more self-centered angst than the cast of Days of Our Lives.

The mutant superheroes are given a choice; they can undergo a procedure that takes their super powers away and therefore offers them a normal life, or they can reject the change and continue their stand against super villains. The cure would end their alienation from prejudicial human beings, but if they listen to the defiant Magneto, who preaches survival of the fittest, they will use their energy to rule the world. Elwood P. Dowd had to make the same decision; reject the serum and continue life with a six-foot rabbit, or take the shot and see Harvey never no more. What to do?

The preceding adventures had the prerequisite battle sequences enjoyed by sci-fi action enthusiasts, but the stories also contained a positive analogy we Christians could relate to. Like the ostracized superheroes who suffer bigotry because of difference, the followers of Christ often battle a comparable prejudice.

The heavy message, however, gets the usual shallow comic strip treatment. This is after all, an action adventure populated with characters who throw fireballs, walk through walls, and levitate houses with a simple squint of the eyes. Its about super fights pumped up by super studio effects (such as the dismantling of the Golden Gate Bridge in order to use it as a link to Alcatraz Island I got to admit, that was pretty cool). As with most screen adaptations of comic books, this one is loud, violent and skin deep. But they are a whiny bunch, laden with all that woe-is-me angst. Despite its special effects and tight-fitting leather, X-Men III will most likely be remembered as the first super soap opera.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Distributor: 20th Century Fox

Crude Language: A young girl calls a dome-headed villain a d---head.
Obscene Language: 2 b-words and 3 or 4 expletives (damn and hell)
Profanity: None
Violence: Explosions, kick fighting, gun shooting, necks breaking, and threats of planetary destruction abound mostly comic book style, with the heroes eventually defeating the baddies. Several people are killed. Much too violent for children.
Sexual Intercourse: A sexual situation has the woman wrapping her legs around her lover in an erotic way. The scene changes from sensuality to violence.
Nudity: A woman stripped of her powers is seen huddled on the floor, sans clothing. The positioning prevents the exposure of private parts. One villainess female is dressed in a blue, scaly, skin-tight outfit that makes her look as if she has nothing on.
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: A teen girl alludes to males wanting just one thing from females.
Drug Abuse: None
Other: None
Running Time: 103 minutes
Intended Audience: Teens and Adults

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