The Wolverine

The WolverineLogan (Hugh Jackman) travels to China to say goodbye to a dying old friend, Yashida (Hal Yamanouchi). Logan had saved Yashida from an atomic bomb in World War II while Logan was at an internment camp. On his deathbed, Yashida tells Logan that he can take away his immortality, something Logan has been pondering. Yashida has found a way to transfer the healing capability from Logan to himself. He hopes to obtain this super power to extend his life.

Yashida’s granddaughter, Mariko (Tao Okamoto) is going to take over the company when he dies. This will make her the most powerful person in Japan. There are many, including Yashida’s son, Shingen (Hiroyuki Sanada) and a band of Yakuza ninja warriors, all of whom are trying to kill Mariko. With the help of Yukio (Rila Fukushima), a girl who can see the future, Logan and Mariko try to escape the Yakuza.

Yashida’s doctor, Dr. Green (Svetlana Khodchenkova) isn’t who she seems. She is actually a mutant herself, known as the Viper. She implants a bug in Logan’s chest, which inhibits Logan’s ability to heal himself.

After losing his immortality, Logan finds himself in the battle for his life trying to protect Mariko.

The Wolverine is probably one of the worst superhero movie ever. The villainous mutant is someone I’ve never heard of. The Viper. Granted, I didn’t read a lot of X-Men comics as a kid, so maybe I missed this. Maybe she’s something. During her big transformation into super villain, her skin turns all lizard-like and starts to peel off. She rips her scaly off to reveal her new persona. Only, she is the same person, only with new layer perfect skin. And no hair. That’s it. What kind of villain is that?

I felt like there wasn’t enough real action for an X-Men movie. (The 3D didn’t add anything. At all.) Sure, there are plenty of fight scenes, but it is all ninjas and sword fights. It gets to be too much. (And, really, should ninjas need to be shouting directions to each other? I thought they were all about stealth and their superior combat abilities? Perhaps I am mistaken.) To me, this was like a Tokyo Drift episode for the Wolverine. It was completely disconnected and unnecessary. I guess after this many movies in the franchise, they were due for one like this.

If you have seen any of the X-Men movies, you are aware of what Hugh Jackman can do as the Wolverine. I don’t fault him for this one, though. I blame the poor writing and execution of the movie. The rest of the cast doesn’t fare any better. It comes across as an early kung fu B movie.

The end credits scene is a set up for the next X-Men movie. If you consider what the next movie is supposed to be like, it makes sense. If you take it at face value, it fits in with The Wolverine, in that it seems odd and out of nowhere.

Hopefully, the X-Men franchise can get its healing powers back and revive itself from this mess.

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