Logan ★★★★★

“This is what life looks like: people who love each other, a home. You should take a moment, feel it. You still have time.”

James Mangold and Hugh Jackman return (after the criminally underrated Japan set tale, The Wolverine) to tell one last story about the clawed mutant using the western genre as inspiration for this film, specifically Shane (as their previous outing together used The Outlaw Josey Wales).

Logan is best described as a religious experience. We don't get to see the title character being the best he is at what he does nor do we ever get to see him fully back to how he used to be when he was younger. Logan is a sickly man, on his last leg thinking of when it would be right to end it all as his old friend, Charles Xavier, mentally and physically rots. Then the conflict appears as a group of mercenaries, The Reavers, hunt a young mysterious girl named Laura and thus he and the ailing Xavier head out on one last journey, one of suffering, death, and self discovery.

Hugh Jackman returns to the role of Wolverine for one last time with just as much (if not more) emotional fervor as he did in the last solo outing for the character. His character is raw, unhinged, someone who is tired of losing everything and watching everyone around him die and Jackman delivers the role with such heart and intensity. Patrick Stewart is heartbreaking as the deteriorating Xavier, watching this character who has had a presence, physical or not, in all of the previous 9 X-Men related films slowly coming to his final moments is sure to leave even the bitterest of people pained. Dafne Keen is an absolute standout, giving a quiet intensity with her eyes alone and a feral brutality unseen in on this level in the franchise before. Boyd Holdbrook as the leader of The Reavers, Donald Pierce, is entertaining without being hammy and Richard E. Grant does fine in his smaller villainous role.

The violence is clearly presented at it's bloodiest in the franchise but it never feels overhanded. When it's there it fits the tone of the film and serves the story. Jackman and Stewart constantly cursing (sometimes at each other) feels natural, instead of attempting to seem "adult" it just is. The western genre is one that fits the character and setting perfectly and one that Mangold is all too familiar with. The pacing is that of a western, the tone is that of a western, the cinematography is... well, you get the point. Never does the film "jump the shark" into being a standard superhero movie, it always takes the grounded and bloody road. I've had much love for this character ever sine I first saw him way back in 2000 at the young age of 5 and being absolutely amazed at this brooding tough guy and to see Jackman's take on the character (and likely Logan's own cinematic career) come to an end, while heartbreaking, is handled with the utmost care and respect that it serves as one hell of a finisher.

Logan - 5/5