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X-Men essay

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  • Jaguarita J. H.
    I wrote this for a Critizism class and am now inflicting it on you! ~Jaguarita X-Men The Movie Director: Bryan Singer Writers: Ed Solomon, Christopher
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 30, 2001
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      I wrote this for a Critizism class and am now inflicting it on you!

      X-Men The Movie
      Director: Bryan Singer
      Writers: Ed Solomon, Christopher McQuarrie, Bryan Singer, Tom DeSanto, David
      Hayter, and Joss Whedon

      X-Men The Movie; Just a Lost Memo?

      There is a saying on the internet that is often quoted by fans of the
      X-men movie, released in 2000. It was first said by Donna Beven, a fairly
      prolific writer of fan fiction and goes something like this: "If Logan &
      Rogue were supposed to be sibling-like, then Hugh and Anna didn't get the
      friggin' memo..." A rather accurate way to put it when one looks at the fact
      that most major scenes revolve around the Logan/Rogue dynamic. But the
      question of whether or not this perceived relationship was intended by the
      writer and the director of the film adaptation of the long running comic
      book multi-series is one that will no doubt be argued over at least until
      the public is graced with X-Men the Move 2. It is my hope to cast some light
      on the subject.

      Let us begin with some important character notes. First, Logan is the
      literary archetype 'Loner' figure, played by Hugh Jackman. He is a man with
      no past and no more future than what we find him doing in the first place,
      simply existing, ageless due to his mutant ablity. He is most certainly not
      a team player. Then we have Marie, a girl who calls herself Rogue, who is
      the walking personification of innocence, played by Anna Paquin. She's
      seventeen and had an entire world of possibilities and plans ahead of her
      before her mutation manifested. They are as far opposites as air and lead.
      Of course we all know what happens to opposites when they exist in a movie
      together, they attract like magnetic poles. There are several points that
      illustrate this. Then there are six pivotal scenes in the film where two
      solitary, isolated, figures reach out for each other, simply because there
      is no one else who understands them.

      First, the scene is the young girl who will shortly become Rogue in her
      room with her best friend. This is the point in the movie she is simply
      Marie, right at her abrupt and traumatic introduction to the world of the
      mutant by way of her first kiss. It is also the scene that sends young Marie
      on the run, casting her in the role of fugitive and isolating her from the
      life she knew. This cuts her off from her past. We next see Marie climbing
      out of a semi-truck's cab far to the north from her native Mississippi in
      Laughlin City, Canada, again cut off from her past, this time by distance.
      She is completely covered with only her face exposed, this isolates her from
      physical contact as she seeks to protect others from what she can't control,
      her mutant power to drain their life and memories from them.

      Second, enter the man called Wolverine. One hardnosed, hard drinking, cage
      fighting, certified bad-ass. The first sight the audience and young Marie
      gets of the man he is turning away from a fallen opponent to lean against
      the side of the cage and grab a quick drink. It should also be mentioned
      that the Wolverine is shirtless, sweaty, and the actor portraying him has a
      body that any red-blooded heterosexual female would drool over. After being
      treated to the sight of Wolverine fighting the scene shifts to some time
      later in the seedy establishment where Marie is sitting at the bar.
      Wolverine sits down and sharply orders a beer. Both look up at the
      television when the new reporter uses the word 'mutant'. They exchange a
      glance before Wolverine is verbally accosted by the last man he fought, who
      whispers to him that he knows what Wolverine is. This is where the audience
      is shown a small part of what Wolverine can do, his exacting control over
      his two sets of metal claws as a matter of fact. Marie now knows that the
      Wolverine is like her, and dangerous whether he wants to be or not.

      After quickly leaving the bar the man still only known (to those not
      steeped in the lore and back story of the comic books) as Wolverine pulls to
      the side of the road and finds that Marie has hitched a ride on his bike
      trailer. Instead of leaving her on the side of the road in the middle of
      nowhere he lets her in the truck. They exchange small talk, including their
      real names and the fact that every time Wolverine (Logan) lets his claws out
      it hurts and when Rogue (Marie) touches people something 'bad' happens to
      them. This exchange of secrets forges another link between them. Shortly
      thereafter, ironically enough during a chat about seatbelts, the truck
      crashes into a toppled tree and Logan is thrown from the vehicle. While
      Logan is getting up, and a bone deep gash is quickly closing on his
      forehead, his first response isn't to curse at his wrecked truck but to ask
      the 'kid' if she's alright. This signals concern, something that seems
      atypical for the cage-fighter.

      Later, Rogue hears a noise while at Professor Xavier's School for Gifted
      Youth and seeks out Logan's bedroom. The sound proves to be Logan in the
      grips of a nightmare, and reacting on instincts that are still more than
      partially trapped in the nightmare, he accidentally harms Rogue seriously.
      Rogue in turn touches Logan with her bare hand. In essence, Logan is -in-
      Rogue both physically and mentally as she drains his life force and mutant
      healing factor to save her own life. While Logan is almost constantly
      muttering the word "no" it sounds more like a denial of what he has done to
      Rogue rather than whatever she may do to him with her touch, and he stops
      saying "no" the moment she touches him.

      When Rogue runs away from the school Logan goes after her, in spite of the
      fact that another very powerful mutant is apparently after him for some
      unknown reason. Logan not only finds her, but holds her and promises to take
      care of her. He also admits that they are the same on a fundamental level.
      Then they are attacked by the mutant known as Magneto (even if you don't
      read the comic books -that- one is pretty self explanatory). As it turns out
      Magneto isn't after Logan, he wants Rogue. Logan is helpless to protect her
      as he promised, but still defies Magneto. This shows that he holds her
      well-being above his own.

      Now we arrive at our sixth point. Logan goes after Rogue with the X-Men.
      Logan is wearing a uniform. Logan volunteers to be hurled bodily through the
      air, trusting only to the rather shaky control that Storm and Jean Grey have
      over their mutant powers. He faces, again, a mutant who can manipulate the
      metal in his body then willfully touches Rogue when he finds her
      unconscious, near death, this time knowing full well what her powers can do
      to him if they stay in contact too long. This is an extremely powerful
      statement for someone who hasn't cared about anyone but himself in the
      fifteen years he can remember.

      So, what does all of this prove exactly? One, Logan has a soft spot for
      young women with the nerve to stand in the middle of a snow bank and insist
      that they just saved his life. Two, Rogue trusts Logan implicitly. She knows
      that he would never intentionally harm her. Three, Logan would die for
      Rogue. Four, Logan made a promise to Rogue and he kept it, to protect her.
      Five, Rogue has been more intimate with Logan than anyone else in his life
      possibly could, taking him into herself both literally and figuratively,
      twice. After all, this is a movie and if Hollywood has taught us anything it
      is that the strongest loves bloom under the most adverse conditions.

      Call it a trick of editing, call it the over active imaginations of love
      starved nerd-girls, call it having watched Casablanca one too many times if
      you wish. Of course, I am willing to admit that this could still be seen as
      a sibling-like, or even parental, relationship. But in the end the
      interpretation is left up to the audience, among whom there will always be
      those wistful and timeless romantics who long for what others call
      impossible or unlikely relationships. Then again, we are entitled to our
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