What the critics really think about Logan

The reviews are rolling in, and it sounds like the Wolverine sequel Logan is ready to give Wolverine fans the movie they've been waiting for.

James Mangold's film is well on its way to being "Certified Fresh" by Rotten Tomatoes, sitting well over 90 percent positive with more than 60 reviews from the site's approved critics. The sequel, set in 2019, follows Logan (Hugh Jackman) as an old man, taking care of Professor X (Patrick Stewart) and the young mutant X-23 (Dafne Keen). Critics are absolutely raving about the comic book story, with some going so far as to say it's arguably the best comic book movie ever made—Marvel, DC, or otherwise. Here's a rundown of some of the leading reviews ahead of the release.

The Hollywood Reporter

Writing for the Hollywood Reporter, Sheri Linden called the film the perfect blend of Marvel comics lore and Western mythology, noting Mangold "crafted an affectingly stripped-down standalone feature, one that draws its strength from Hugh Jackman's nuanced turn as a reluctant, all but dissipated hero." She pointed to Patrick Stewart's portrayal of a broken Professor Xavier, now suffering from a degenerative brain disorder in his old age, adding that Stewart is "effortlessly compelling as a man whose attentiveness to the world around him runs deep, even as his own tethers to it are fraying."

USA Today

In describing Logan, USA Today's Brian Truitt looked to another famous sci-fi franchise to connect the style, calling the "excellent adventure" the "Dark Knight of the mutant-filled X-franchise, a gripping film that transcends the comic-book genre by saying something important." He said the most refreshing thing about Logan is how it steers clear of typical superhero clichés and tropes, instead telling a deeply personal story about a character fans have been watching for years. She called the film, apparently Jackman's final X-Men outing, a "sendoff fans won't soon forget."

Toronto Sun

Writing for the Toronto Sun, Mark Daniell viewed Logan as a legit game-changer for the superhero genre at large. Daniell didn't mince words in his praise, saying Jackman "isn't just giving us the definitive X-Men movie; it could just be the definitive comic book movie." He praised the western elements that tie the narrative together, all the way down to the recurring themes of the past catching up with its would-be heroes. After nearly two decades of X-Men movies, Daniell wrote Logan feels like a coda of sorts for the nearly invincible hero: "Time has a way of roughening us all out; making us reconcile the dream of who we wanted to be and the reality of who we actually became. All of us have to face that sooner or later, and so should our heroes."

Entertainment Weekly

It might not seem like the most obvious marriage, but Entertainment Weekly's Chris Nashawaty called Logan both "the most violent film in the series and the most sentimental one" when looking at the X-Men franchise as a whole. He noted that if the movie isn't spilling blood, it's spilling tears, telling the story of the last handful of mutants left in the world. He also praised the relatively low stakes, which is a rare thing when it comes to superhero movies. Instead of saving the world or fighting off an army, Logan and his ragtag family embark on a mission to save X-23. Plain and simple.

TIME Magazine

Though the overwhelming majority of reviews have been glowing, there are a few dissenting voices. Stephanie Zacharek, with TIME Magazine, said the movie felt "grim" and "overbearing." She said it leans almost too hard into nihilism and gloom, and fails to reach the political relevance it's hoping to attain. "Logan, by either luck or prescience or some combination of both, feels political, but it's really just business as usual in the comic-book-movie game," concluded Zacharek. "It sounds the alarm about how dark the world really is, as if we were incapable of reading between the panels on our own."

Daily Telegraph

For a film in a tentpole superhero franchise, the Daily Telegraph's Robbie Collin touted Logan as a "creatively risky superhero movie" that deserves success. He said he was impressed with where the story went, and praised Hugh Jackman's turn as an older, more jaded version of Wolverine. He also likened the film to the cult hit Mad Max franchise, pointing to a "terrifically staged desert car chase—in fact, at times the bearded, wild-eyed Jackman looks uncannily like a mid-penance Mel Gibson—and there as elsewhere, the use of computer graphics is subtle, and the action looks dusty and authentic." Certainly not the type of description you'd expect for a major superhero flick.

Total Film

James Mottram, with Total Film, said the thing that surprised him most about Logan is the fact that it actually has a definitive end—a rare feat for a superhero movie in this day and age. He also touched on Keen's performance as X-23, saying she's "glorious as the brooding Laura, who is trying to head for Eden, a place of safety across the border. The closest point of comparison? Chloë Grace Moretz's hyper-violent Hit-Girl in Kick-Ass. Which, if you weren't already excited about this movie, should certainly put you over the top.

Vox

Looking at the X-Men franchise as a whole, Vox's Todd VanDerWerff calls Logan the best X-Men movie since X-Men 2 in 2002. VanDerWerff argues that the film comes across as a "lonely, pre-apocalyptic Western" featuring the fan favorite mutant. Instead of trying to deconstruct the superhero genre itself, VanDerWerff notes Logan simply assumes the audience is up to speed on how these types of movies work and dives in to tell an engaging story: "Gone are the scenes where somebody explains another person's powers in detail. Mangold trusts his filmmaking—or our now voluminous knowledge of the X-Men universe, learned from the many other films set within it—to get the point across."

Forbes

Writing for Forbes, Mark Hughes puts Logan among the best films of 2017—superhero genre or otherwise. Even further, Hughes believes Logan could actually be the "first superhero movie since The Dark Knight to have a strong chance of being considered among the contenders for Best Picture come Oscar time in early 2018." Along with Best Picture, he also believes the cast could also pull down some nominations for their performances. Considering the superhero genre is notoriously underrepresented when it comes to awards chatter, that's certainly high praise.

Vanity Fair

Instead of opting for massive special effects and action set pieces, Vanity Fair's Richard Lawson wrote that Logan is instead a "low-to-the-ground, intimate kind of action movie, allowing for many gnarly close-ups of metal going through throats and skulls and other stuff." Unlike most superhero films, Lawson said Logan truly has an air of finality, with the story a "blood-drenched stab-a-thon that frequently hits bone."

Variety

Variety's Owen Gleiberman praised Logan for its simplicity and pacing, taking its time to tell a relatively bare bones story that's compelling simply by virtue of the fact that it's so different from the way superhero stories are typically represented: "It's a scruffy dystopian road Western that takes its time in a way that most slam-bang superhero movies don't. And the analog pace and elemental story work for it."