Legendary Comic Book Scribe Chris Claremont Weighs In On The Wolverine

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claremontThe Wolverine has been taking a small slice out of the weekend box office, pulling in a little over $53 million. That makes it the #1 movie in the land, but it’s also the lowest debuting X-Men movie ever. The film has mixed reactions from audiences as well. Most people either think it was a solid film or that it feel apart during the third act. Part of people’s high expectations was undoubtedly caused by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller‘s classic Japan Saga which served as the basis for the film. The writer of the seminal classic spoke with Vulture and shared his thoughts on James Mangold and Hugh Jackman‘s take.

Claremont was asked what he thought about the movie overall. The comic book writer said that the first two acts were “kick-ass” but the finale shifted the film’s tone a little too much for his liking:

The first two acts were kick-ass, and they set this up to be a really exceptional, different movie. It was like the film took this giant step forward. I liked that it focuses on the essence of who Wolverine is and what he does. Hugh Jackman is eloquent, and he owns the character at this point. It’s a surprisingly multidimensional performance. The third act wasn’t bad, per se, but it was a different tone. That moment he starts motorcycling up the 400 kilometers … he was almost riding into a different movie. It would be interesting to talk to Mangold and ask why they felt they had to go in that direction.

wolverine 4After the interviewer mentioned that it felt like everyone died three times in the film, Claremont was asked to clarify his problems with the third act:

The end sort of turned into stuff we’ve all seen before. It just started throwing superhero tropes against the wall: the Yakuza against Wolverine, the Viper imprisoning Wolverine, the Silver Samurai cutting off Wolverine’s claws. The point is not how many artful ways can he cut someone to shish kebab. There was no moment of emotional punch to match, say, Tony Stark watching what he thinks is Pepper Potts’s death in the third Iron Man. That’s a moment. There should have been one in this, but everybody was on the sidelines. There should have been more direct involvement with Mariko. The problem with that superhero silliness, I’m sitting there thinking, What’s Viper there for? And what exactly does her venom do? People go all bubbly and collapse? I wanted a moment of choice for the characters in that scene in the castle. That sort of got lost in all the running and jumping and hitting.

It’s a perfectly fine summer movie. I went into it hoping for a lot more. This is a story that [producer] Lauren Shuler Donner has wanted to tell for sixteen years, as long as I’ve known her, and that I’ve wanted to tell a lot longer. The challenge always is, when a film goes from concept to execution, it evolves depending on who is directing and who’s writing. As the creator of source material — corporate-owned source material that’s being developed by a rival corporation, no less — I have no say.

There’s a lot more with Claremont on the film and how the original Japan Saga story came about. You can read the extensive interview with him by clicking here. I agree with Claremont wholeheartedly. I loved the first 2/3 of the movie, but the third act left me feeling disappointed. Mangold did offer up the best version of The Wolverine we’ve seen on film, but maybe one day Wolverine fans will finally get the movie they have been waiting for. What did you think about The Wolverine? Do you disagree with Claremont‘s review?

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Source : Vulture