The year is 2029, no mutant births have been recorded in the last 20 years. The once raging Wolverine is now a mere alcoholic. The scene starts off with Logan (Hugh Jackman) getting beaten up by goons; Director James Mangold does not make a delay in setting the dark tone of the film, which is quite in correspondence of Logan’s recent past and impending future. The past few years have been harsh on him. With his reduced capacity to regenerate, he now struggles to retract his claws, needs glasses, and makes a living as a chauffeur while battling alcoholism. He seems to have fallen down his immortal pedestal and made his descent into the sheer representation of human suffering and fragility. His apparent immortality has finally taken its due toll.
As the movie progresses, we see Logan is not alone in his misery. Charles Xavier (Sir Patrick Stewart), the founding father of X-Men seems to be near his end, too. He is now suffering from Alzheimer’s and suffering from seizures that set off calamitous reactions on humans. Logan acts as a reluctant son in taking care of the ailing Professor – torn between his duties, capabilities, and wants. Helping Logan take care of Xavier is Caliban (Stephen Merchant) an albino mutant who has the power to track approaching enemies. Music director, Marco Beltrami’s music only adds to the drama and emotions, further elevating Logan above other movies of the genre.
Mangold relies on the art of poetic storytelling rather than going on the beaten happy-go-lucky track which superhero movies seem to have resorted to. With critics comparing it to Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven, Logan seems to have evolved past the superhero genre into a more mature display of human emotions and fateful processions. Mangold further dives in the realms of heroism, giving Logan a reason to continue his miserable life: Laura (Dafne Keen) an 11-year-old second generation mutant, created in a lab with powers eerily similar to the Wolverine.
In hot pursuit of Laura is a Bounty Hunter: Pierce (Boyd Holbrook) and evil biologist Dr. Rice (Richard E Grant) who will take any measure possible to acquire her. This forces our team of three deadbeat superheroes to embark on a long and dangerous trip to Eden, which is supposedly a safe haven for mutants like Laura.
Amongst all the CG gore (which rightly earned Logan an R rating), the movie manages to explore the themes of family, sacrifice, isolation while probing into more of the intimate, personal and deconstructed lives of superheroes, exposing their human-like vulnerabilities and insecurities.
As mentioned earlier, this movie violates genre stereotypes over and over again and manages to surpass the hackneyed use of CGI and other clichéd themes which you’d expect of a regular superhero movie. Director Mangold has quite evidently put in commendable effort to achieve those nuances. Ironically, with Hugh Jackman’s 10th and final outing as Wolverine, his character has never been more emotionally alive – his sheer vulnerability has made his grandeur more human and relatable. This seems to be the perfect way for both Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart to end their legendary, unfaltering and unforgettable legacies in the X-Men Universe.