Thursday, April 28, 2016

X2: X-Men United (2003) Through a Kid’s Eyes

Since we’ve read the original versions of both Secret Wars and Excalibur by Claremont and Davis my daughter knows most of these characters.  This has allowed her to join the legion of fans with internal brain conflict between the excitement of seeing the characters live, and dealing with what is changed and what should be changed for live action.

“Nightcrawler doesn’t go ‘whoosh’ when he teleports, he goes ‘BAMF’”
(There were still a great many out loud, “awesome”s for his action scenes.)

“Wolverine’s hair is really weird live.”

And following his bottle freezing trick:
“Iceman is really cool…
Oh!  Ha Ha!”

She called Bobby’s cat licking the frozen coffee and also, due to that ingrained anti-racism that seems to be working well, called his family “a bunch of poopies.”  However, it took an extended bit to register the cat licked Wolvie’s claws because there was blood on them.

General excitement came from the cameos of other characters she knew, such as Kitty.  She misidentified Siren as her dad, Banshee, because my comics are old (like me) and Siren wasn’t born yet in them.

She was surprised that Colossus didn’t sound Russian in the film, which I believe is more a comment on my ability to do accents than her paying attention.

She found Storm’s wig too distracting to focus on anything else when she was around.  I think we really need a V-Chip for TLC.

There was also an interesting mix of what she can figure out and what she can’t.

As soon as she saw the back of the neck scarring on various mutants she made the connection and went, “Heyyyyyyy!”

On the other hand, she knows who Lady Deathstrike is, and then spent the entire movie asking if one of my Dad’s favorite actresses, Kelly Hu had knuckle cracking power.

She was also puzzled as to why the adamantium set up still looked “fresh.”   When the Deathstrike claws got the dramatic reveal, she found Wolverine’s “Holy ****!” exclamation completely acceptable. This in in spite of her usual zero tolerance for profanity.  I guess Hugh Jackman gets a pass. However, the *clank* at the bottom of the tank following the metallic tears was given a full on, “deeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee-sgusting!”

Who am I to judge, though?  After seeing this film multiple times, this was the first viewing where I noticed the nature documentary on TV about babies being left alone was foreshadowing.

She reacted to the famous “live action Wolverine Unleashed for the first time” pretty much the same way the rest of the world did. There was a great many instances of “Well!” and “Oh God!” in our living room.

She had an easier time sympathizing with the antagonists of the first film this time around.  She was actively rooting for Mystique. When she was about to be discovered, my daughter yelled for her to “quickly swish.”  (Meaning transform her appearance.)  That was followed by, “Or hide…yeah, that works too.”

This came from that anti-prejudice thing again, especially at a level that turns an individual against family members.  Pretty much every time Stryker was on screen she’d say things like:
“My God he’s evil.”
“Why doesn’t someone just shoot him?”
“Put him in Cerebro and let him die, that would be easier.”

Magneto’s unleashed scene was also found to be impressive, though she thought it was sickening when he pulled the metal out of the guard’s body.

Once more there was a mix of “getting it” and “not getting it” for the scene Mystique sets the hapless guard up.

She recognized Mystique in the bar immediately, not because of Rebecca Romjin’s face, but because she was wearing a blue scaly dress. (Which, I embarrassingly admit, I never noticed before.)

However, once the guy passed out in the men’s room, my daughter’s initial, confused thought was, “There’s something in his butt?”
Which quickly changed to:
“Oh…she’s injecting metal into him.”

She forgot Mystique was in the film for final assault, and then called her impersonating Wolverine in the spillway.  (Other parents of pre-teens will recognize this from homework questions as the, “I don’t understand anything…I know that, I know that, I know that,” phenomenon.)

As the flood was poised, she also mentioned forgetting about the dam, quickly covering herself with, “It’s a complicated movie.”

She demonstrated her genre savvy once more in the tragic ending.

“Jean’s not gonna die. She’s in the next one, I saw her when I was little.”

Jean is then covered with millions of gallons of water.

“She’s gonna die and then get better.”

And lastly, as a familiar fiery shape appeared in the water:

“Ohhhhh, that’s why she turned yellow…because she's the Phoenix.”


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