‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ Isn’t The End Of The World, But It’s Not Quite X-Traordinary Either

While X-Men: Apocalypse won’t be out until May 27 in the US, early reviews are already pouring in — and they’re not all convinced. The fourth X-Men movie by Bryan Singer sees Professor Xavier’s mutants join powers to fight Apocalypse, a powerful god-like being who’s recruited four destructive horsemen to destroy the world. Stars such as Jennifer Lawrence, Michael Fassbender, James McAvoy and Nicholas Hoult are all returning, joined by popular newcomers such as Sophie Turner and Olivia Munn.All of that to say that expectations are quite high, especially in a year where six superhero movies are slated for release. But the current rating on Rotten Tomatoes sits at 44%, so what went missing? Here’s a roundup of what critics loved, hated and kind of enjoyed.

Professor X and his proteges / 20th Century Fox

Professor X and his proteges / 20th Century Fox

The two main reasons to be excited for X-Men: Apocalypse seem to be that the movie is honoring the themes of the rest of the X-Men franchise, where mutants have to struggle with the feeling of being outcasts, and that the new X-Men introduced are fantastic.Screen Daily points out why the movie resonates so well:

Cyclops and Jean Grey / 20th Century Fox

Cyclops and Jean Grey / 20th Century Fox

According to Vox, the comic book fans with high expectations for the new X-Men introduced on screen don’t need to worry.
Village Voice also praises the budding X-Men, who suddenly have to go from pupils to real fighters.

20th Century Fox

20th Century Fox

The first problem identified by reviewers is the number of heroes involved: It’s a mess. Just like Captain America: Civil War, it’s tricky to introduce a plethora of characters with different powers while still giving them each the screen time they deserve, and it seems Apocalypse is depriving some of its best actors of material to work with.
Over at Entertainment Weekly, the confusion reached an all-time high.This issue was also pointed out by The Hollywood Reporter, who makes it sound like it might have been better to have just a little fewer characters involved.


The second bone critics have to pick with Apocalypse unfortunately regards the villain. It’s a shame, since he’s in the title and basically the trigger for the entire plot; plus, he’s played by the fabulous Oscar Isaac. But the first viewers were far from impressed.
As Entertainment Weekly explains, it’s not necessarily that Apocalypse is badly depicted — it’s just that he’s boring.


Same goes for The Wrap, who suggests “Monotony” as an alternative subtitle.

20th Century Fox

20th Century Fox

All in all, many reviews admitted that there were some good sides to X-Men: Apocalypse, but that they might not be good enough to compete in the superhero showdown that’s been taking over theaters.Variety also found that the young X-Men were the most exciting, but still they didn’t outbalance the chaotic feeling of the movie.

20th Century Fox

20th Century Fox

Coming Soon probably identified the main reason for this average performance: director Bryan Singer’s familiarity with the franchise is an asset when it comes to honoring the previous movies and fleshing out the characters, but it’s starting to lack fresh ideas.

Olivia Munn as Psylocke / 20th Century Fox

Olivia Munn as Psylocke / 20th Century Fox

Obviously, movies such as the recent Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice have proved that a negative consensus in the early reviews does not necessarily amount to unsatisfied fans — so we’ll have to wait for the movie to come out to definitely rate X-Men: Apocalypse.

20th Century Fox

20th Century Fox

Sources: Rotten Tomatoes, Screen Daily, Entertainment Weekly, The Hollywood Reporter, Village Voice, Variety, Vox, The Wrap, Coming Soon