X-Men: Dark Phoenix (2019)

x-men dark phoenix poster 2019 movie
4.0 Overall Score
Story: 4/10
Acting: 6/10
Visuals: 6/10

Good cast

Good cast let down by script

Movie Info

Movie Name: X-Men:  Dark Phoenix

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Genre(s): Comic Book/Action/Adventure/Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Release Date(s): June 7, 2019

MPAA Rating: PG-13

x-men dark phoenix jean vs jessica chastain sophie turner

We will fight in a pastel battle of will that would make Thomas Kinkade jealous

The dream of Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) to have mutants and humans live together in peace has been reached.  The X-Men are heroes and have gained the respect of the world.  When a space shuttle is in danger, Xavier sends the X-Men to help against the concerns of Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence).  Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) discovers something is inside of her and the power she possesses wants out.  When tragedy strikes, the X-Men are divided, and Jean finds herself hunted…but someone possessing the power of the Phoenix has no need to run.

Written and directed by Simon Kingberg, X-Men:  Dark Phoenix (which also goes by just Dark Phoenix) is a Marvel Comics action-adventure superhero film.  The movie follows X-Men:  Apocalypse (2016) and is a retelling of the X-Men:  Dark Phoenix Saga from Uncanny X-Men #129-137 (January 1980-September 1980).  The film was critically panned and panned by fans.  The film received Razzie nominations for Worst Supporting Actress (Jessica Chastain) and Worst Remake, Rip-Off, or Sequel.

x-men dark phoenix dazzler halston sage

We get a live action Dazzler complete with face make-up…but she needs to work on her lightshow

I was on the X-Men boat for a long time.  X-Men was part of the real first wave of superhero movies and was the culmination of childhood dreams.  X-Men:  The Last Stand showed a crushing of those dreams.  The series rebooted strong with X-Men:  First Class, but the last entry X-Men:  Apocalypse was quite weak.  The decision to revisit the Dark Phoenix story was unfortunate.

The X-Men have had tons of great stories, and Dark Phoenix is just one of them.  The emotion, soap-opera drama, and sheer magnitude of the story really rose the X-Men comics to another level.  Here, the story just feels like another entry in a chain of movies.  The decision to eliminate the Shi’ar, the Hellfire Club, the trial, etc. really watered down the important aspects of the story.  Instead we got the lame D’Bari (aliens that no one remembers)…at least we got a Dazzler cameo.

The movie has a ton of talent behind it.  Much of the big cast from the previous movies returned for the film and Jessica Chastain is added to cast as the leader of the D’Bari.  It is the wealth of talent that makes the movie even worse.  It feels like it easily could have been better and failed the actors.

x-men dark phoenix space bird

All right! A phoenix tearing through space…finally! …and it’s over

The visuals for the film are also so-so.  Though the second time it happened it was repetitive, the fun Quicksilver sequences of the last two films aren’t here.  The villains are less than impressive and the big story seems small when compared to something like X-Men:  Days of Future Past.  All I’ve wanted for both Phoenix films is the giant phoenix in the sky.  We get it a little here in this movie, but it isn’t enough to save it.

X-Men:  Dark Phoenix is the “last” X-Men film in that Fox’s characters are now under the Disney umbrella.  While the X-Men movies were fighting Disney movies, it felt like the X-Men characters were slighted in the comic book (replaced by a push for the Inhumans for the most part), but now the X-Men are on the rebound and pretty much guaranteed to show up in the MCU.  I kind of liked the X-Men’s independence from the format of the MCU movies and it remains to be seen if the changes for the X-Men will be a good thing or not.

Related Links:

X-Men (2000)

X2:  X-Men United (2003)

X-Men:  The Last Stand (2006)

X-Men Origins:  Wolverine (2009)

The Wolverine (2013)

Logan (2017)

X-Men:  First Class (2011)

X-Men:  Days of Future Past (2014)

X-Men:  Apocalypse (2016)

Deadpool (2016)

Deadpool 2 (2018)

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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