• A look back on ‘Wolverine’ and ‘Wick’


    Karen Kunawicz

    It took last year’s Deadpool to help Hollywood realize superhero films can tread adult, R-rated territory. As I mentioned all too briefly last week, Logan was serious business, and I wish the first two films in the Wolverine franchise were brave enough at the time to risk that type of storytelling.

    When you watch a good superhero movie, you often think, “Hey, I want to be a super hero too! I want to be strong, near invincible, have super powers.” But then you watch Logan and you think, with great power comes isolation and a great burden too.

    Writer and director James Mangold (The Wolverine, 3:10 to Yuma, Walk the Line and Kate and Leopold) has truly outdone himself.

    After watching Logan, I went to YouTube and looked at a brief highlight reel of Hugh Jackman’s career as Wolverine. Then I went to watch 11 minutes of his audition for the part. A salute goes out to the casting director who found him in 1999 and the producers who saw magic there.

    Let’s also not forget Patrick Stewart as Charles Xavier—brilliant as always. The cast also includes Dafne Keen who does an amazing job taking on the difficult role of the young, troubled X-23, and Boyd Holbrook from Netflix’s Narcos as Pierce. It’s great to see his career taking off—he is set to appear in Shane Black’s The Predator (yes, that “Predator”) next year.

    Hugh Jackman takes a bow in ‘Logan,’ his last movie as the mutant Wolverine

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    I went into John Wick: Chapter 2 making one big mistake—I started off by taking the movie seriously! Then I saw Peter Stormare as a classic mob boss, writer comedian Peter Serafinowicz as the “sommelier” who graciously peddled arms in an elegant backroom (you may remember him as Aldo from Melissa McCarthy’s Spy and on a side note, he has written for Guardians of the Galaxy, Shaun of the Dead, and Star Wars: The Phantom Menace).

    Wick would left and right shoot pursuers in a big fancy party and none of the guests would get killed, Lawrence Fishburne a.k.a. Morpheus appears, murdered bodies would fall on the ground in New York and there would be no police or responders.

    I figured—I think I’m supposed to treat this like a comic book. A bit like the Angelina Jolie – James MacAvoy film, Wanted.

    John Wick: Chapter 2 brings back the wonderful Ian McShane, Lance Reddick from Fringe and is another vehicle for new action star Ruby Rose (OINTB) who we just saw in Resident Evil: The Final Chapter and xXx: The Return of Xander Cage.

    * * *

    If you’re looking for something big, Kong is out tomorrow, with Taylor Swift’s ex, Tom Hiddleston. What were you thinking, Loki?

    John Wick Chapter 2 and Logan both opened last week. KONG opens tomorrow and is available on the IMAX format.


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