Spring and Logan
Hey, look! It's spring. Sort of. I know. There are vast chunks of the US that are still buried under snow, and it's a little bit cooler than usual around here. (Yesterday, it was 63F. And right now it's 67F.) But technically...spring. I like spring. I hate summer. (And if you lived in Texas you'd understand why.) Sunny days with temperatures in the upper 60s and lower 70s are my favorite. And here we are. Yay! I used the pretty pink flowers today for a reason: irony. It's going to off-set the dark.
Because last night I took a break from the massive page proofs and went to see Logan with Dane.
There are so many things I loved about this film, and a couple that I didn't. I selected this trailer because it actually better fits the mood of the film. The second trailer is...too hopeful. The Johnny Cash cover of NIN is the perfect soundtrack. It's exactly right. So, if you haven't seen it yet, hold that thought in your head when you go in. And now, I'm going to place the rest of this review behind a link because...spoilers.
Things I liked: the problem with giving a character as much power as Marvel gave Professor Xavier is that realistically...Xavier is a human being. Yes, yes, he used his super powers for good, and I've always liked him for that. But one of the conceits of the super hero world is that good guys are always good guys. Ridiculous amounts of power are never wrong in their hands. They're always on the correct side of the moral equation. However, human beings are flawed. They age. They get sick. I adored the fact that Marvel gave Xavier Alzheimer's in this film. As if the disease weren't a big enough nightmare on its own, the idea of one of the most powerful brains on the planet being ravaged by it is just...shudder-worthy. That Xavier was then responsible for hurting everyone around him as a result...well...there you are. Kudos to whatever writer concocted that scenario. I also liked that Wolverine was stuck being the caregiver and was inadequate to the task. Let's face it, he's never been Mr. CaringNurture. It would be unrealistic to portray him as changing on that front. The fact that he's trying anyway...well...I really liked that and can relate to it. You can actually see how hard it is for him. I liked that he arranged for care--as adequate care as he could find--and that still doesn't relieve him of the responsibility, guilt, and pain of the situation. That works for me. I loved Laura. She was a smart, capable kid while staying a kid. She was vulnerable without being too vulnerable. It worked. To use a Buffy expression, there was a mutual exchange of butts, and she did it while wearing a girly unicorn t-shirt with ruffles. That's huge. The whole idea that it's okay for a girl to be angry--even raging--is a big step. Normally, girls and women portrayed in this way are either sexualized or de-feminized. Another thing I liked: black people being portrayed as happy, contributing citizens. They were good people--farmers, not drug lords, or inner city poor.
Things I didn't like: Once again the black characters are expendable. They are the motivation for white people to do good deeds and then they are killed off. Yeah. No. Stop that shit. Now. I also felt it too entirely too long for Logan to come around to showing he cared for Laura. That killed the emotional impact for me. Yes, Logan is a show don't tell character. Any time characters speechify about morals and ethics and blah blah, Wolvie rolls his eyes, but he always comes through in a pinch when characters actually walk the talk. The problem may be because I missed the scene where he showed some tenderness toward Laura. (In which case, this just demonstrates how important that scene is.) But let's just say an "Oh, that's what this is like." in the last fifteen seconds of life doesn't do it for me. It's too selfish and depressing even for Logan. Again, he's the type that comes through in the end. Yes, it's a conceit. Emotionally unavailable people are guaranteed to miss the boat when it comes to these moments. It's what they do. Pretending otherwise is stupid...but this is fantasy. In this case, I'm good going with it.
I'll have to watch it again to double check. There are films that I watch and am just not in the correct mindset for. Fury Road was one of those. (So was Donnie Darko, one of my favorite films ever.) It takes a second viewing before I really get into the meat of it. I suspect this is one of those. Nonetheless, I deeply respect Logan. It's a great movie, and perhaps the best super hero film ever made.
 Mind you, I'm not behind what that ultimately says about disease and infirmity. But loved ones are certainly hurt and families are destroyed by Alzheimers. This is the disease's fault, not the patient's.
 There's a reason I don't have kids.
 Too bad we're still only okay with girls being intelligent, or angry, or capable. [sigh] Baby steps.
 Doubt this? Two words: Hillary Clinton.
 I still have trouble seeing a film with so many homophobic slurs in use being considered the Feminist Battle Standard of 2016. But at least I don't hate it now.
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is a Science Fiction and Fantasy author living in Texas.