14 years ago, Bryan Singer directed the original X-Men movie and followed it in 2003 with X2. Both movies launched X-Men into cinema and were mostly loved by audiences and critics alike. He left after X2 and since then the X-Men franchise has floundered until the most recent movie, X-Men: First Class, which was a reboot of sorts with all the X-Men being played by younger actors. Bryan Singer is back for X-Men: Days of Future Past and while it mostly succeeds, it's not as good as First Class or X2.
The main plot of Days of Future Past involves time traveling back to the 1970s through the powers of Kitty Pryde, played by Ellen Page. Acting on Professor Xavier's (Patrick Stewart) suggestion, Kitty Page uses her powers on Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) to send his conscious back in time to him in the past to stop Raven/Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence) from killing Dr. Boliver Trask (Peter Dinklage). Dr. Trask is creating weapons that are able to kill mutants called Sentinels. By stopping her from killing Dr. Trask, she is never captured and her genes are never used to help create the Sentinels. With the past, present, and future all being represented in the film, the writer, Simon Kinberg, did a great job weaving all these together without confusing the audience.
Along with the X-Men we are all familiar with from the previous films, a few new ones are introduced in this movie. Most are done successfully with some cool new powers such as Blink (Bingbing Fan) who opens two portals, one that creates an entry and the other an exit, much like the game Portal. The best new character is Quicksilver (Evan Peters), who gets about 20 minutes in the movie and steals the show. His time on screen is the most fun during the movie. Seeing Quicksilver makes me want a Flash movie with the same effects used in this movie. Singer was able to capture the sense of speed not only visually but also with sound design.
This is were my biggest problem with the lies. After the escape scene that Quicksilver helps with, the movie loses its sense of fun. In First Class and other Marvel movies, they are able to tackle serious issues while still maintaining the sense of fun. Once Quicksilver disappears, this sense is never regained. I wish there were more scenes with the mutants playing with their powers and seeing how they can combine them in inventive ways. We see this in the opening of the movie and never see it again.
It was great to see Wolverine interact with the new cast and Hugh Jackman delivers. Michael Fassbender (young Magneto) and James McAvoy (young Charles Xavier) also give great performances. Jennifer Lawrence (Raven/Mystique) has some good action sequences which are a lot of fun although she gets little else to do in the movie. It will be interesting to see how she is handled going forward now that she's a major Hollywood star. You would have to believe she will get more of a major role in the next film.
Overall, I really enjoyed Days of Future Past. It mostly delivers what it tries to accomplish; although, in my opinion, doesn't reach the fun of X-Men: First Class. I believe it is my favorite Wolverine movie and definitely worth seeing.