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X-Men Origins: Wolverine

Score: 89%
Rating: PG-13
Publisher: Fox Home Entertainment
Region: 1
Media: Blu-ray/2
Running Time: 107 Mins.
Genre: Action/Comic Book
Audio: 5.1 DTS (English), 5.1 Dolby
           Digital (English, Spanish,
           French, Portuguese)

Subtitles: English SDH, Spanish, Cantonese,
           Mandarin, Portuguese


  • The Roots of Wolverine: A Conversation with Stan Lee and Len Wein
  • Wolverine Unleashed: The Complete Origins
  • Weapon X Mutant Files
  • The Thrill of the Chase: The Helicopter Sequence
  • Ultimate X-Mode Bonus View: X Connect, The Director's Chair, Pre-Visualizing Wolverine, X Facts Trivia Track
  • Deleted and Alternate Scenes
  • Director's Commentary
  • Producer's Commentary
  • BD Live: Live Lookup powered by IMDb

In September, 1963, legendary comic book writer Stan Lee took a break from penning Fantastic Four and The Incredible Hulk to create a new comic book group known as The X-Men. Unlike the previously mentioned groups, members of The X-Men were born mutants. No freak experiment gone wrong or exposure to special cosmic rays; mutants simply were that... a mutant variant of the human race. In an interview with Stan Lee (and Len Wein), Stan refers to this creation process as "taking the lazy route" because there was no need to create a reason for the super powers, they were just a part of the natural process. The result of this was that there was a lack of back-story for the characters, a fact that quickly became apparent to fans of the series. Many yearned for more information, leading some writers to begin creating provenance for members of the team. One character stands above all as a fan favorite, spawning his own comic book, multiple graphic novels and a rabid following among readers. That character is known to his friends as Logan, but to the world at large, he is called Wolverine. Recently voted as the #1 comic book character in Wizard Magazine's 200 greatest comic book characters of all time, it was no real surprise when a movie devoted to the origins of Wolverine was announced. Enter X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Beginning with Logan's childhood, viewers are given a quick recap of his troubled youth, his escape with his brother Victor and the subsequent wars that they participate in throughout the decades. Eventually, Victor begins to enjoy the killing a bit too much and a schism is formed between the brothers. Going their separate ways, Logan moves to the north woods of Canada and becomes a lumberjack. Colonel Stryker (Danny Huston), Logan's former commander, returns to inform him of the untimely demise of several members of his former squad, troubled times are afoot. After a showdown with Victor (Liev Schreiber), Logan is convinced that, in order to beat his brother, he will need an upgrade of sorts. Stryker proceeds to coat Logan's bones in an indestructible metal known as adamantium. With his newly enhanced body, Logan sets out to find and kill Victor. He quickly learns that all has been manipulated in order to create a new mutant with all of the combined powers of previously harvested mutants, but none of their weaknesses. This creature, known as Deadpool, answers only to Stryker and his sole purpose is to hunt and kill mutants.

Starring Hugh Jackman, who reprises his role from the popular X-Men movie trilogy, X-Men Origins: Wolverine offers up an abundance of action. Wolverine is more feral that previously shown in the trilogy, something for which many fans were yearning. Often the embodiment of the anti-hero, Jackman is a perfect casting for the role. Playing opposite Liev Schreiber and Danny Huston, who are also great in their respective roles, the cast really does a nice job capturing characters' respective natures from the comic books. Many other characters from the comic series appear in the movie, either as cameos or in more important roles. Some were even cut out during editing, but can be seen in the deleted scenes. To be fair, while the action was great, there were some creative liberties taken with the Deadpool character which bothered me a bit, as he is another perennial favorite. There were also some issues with the CGI, which seemed a bit unpolished for a movie with the kind of budget and fanfare that X-Men Origins: Wolverine received. Regardless of the flaws, I still enjoyed the movie and will doubtlessly view it multiple times in the future.

The Blu-ray version of the movie features great visual and auditory appeal. I'm happy to report that, finally, someone has taken proper advantage of the medium and included an astounding amount of extra features. In addition to the director and producers' commentary tracks, there are also multiple ways to watch the movie, including one that pops up great little trivia snippets throughout the film. There are also numerous featurettes, including character bios for all the major players, interviews with Stan Lee and Len Wein (who is credited with much of the origin story for Wolverine), deleted and altered scenes, and a few behind-the-scenes shorts. One of the more interesting features is called BD Live: Live Lookup. When viewing the movie in this mode, the viewer has instant access (assuming your Blu-ray player is connected to the internet) to actor bios and other relevant information courtesy of This is a great feature for those of us who are always thinking "Ok, where do I recognize him from?" Lastly, there is also a digital copy of the film for use on most portable media players.

While X-Men Origins: Wolverine is not much more than a "popcorn movie," it is a fun and visceral popcorn movie. Fans of the series will be generally pleased with the outcome while casual viewers will enjoy the action and story. I enjoyed reviewing the movie and was especially impressed by the number and quality of the bonus features included with the Blu-ray version. I can only hope that more movie releases will take note and follow suit in the future.

-The Mung Bard, GameVortex Communications
AKA Buddy Ethridge

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