Getting on the ground of miserable is life. That struggle of the normal, everyday drudge coughing up gristle with a crick in the neck from slumming it in the car overnight. An exercise in exhaustion. The expense of which cashes out when Wolverine brings it back and away from the world of one-upping a world levelling event down to a personal note.
The upturning dizziness of finding out your specimen DNA has resulted in offspring (Dafne Keen) is what’s on the tin, but not what’s on the bottom of the can. Dealing with being a parent out of nowhere is a glossed over journey around the whole adoption, foster care and artificial insemination industry where there is so much blood dripping in the night. It’s an ordeal of sunk cost and paperwork that by the time you’re done with all the red tape it’s a wonder why you can’t just design a baby, instead of settling for one of those that pop out at every street corner.
Family is what you make of it, either through choice or circumstance. And the bond between Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and Logan (Hugh Jackman) is strong, earned. It’s years on and they have a rapport that puts you in the place of seeing you with your own parents, wondering if you’ll be up to the task to take care of them because they might as well be dead if you shunt them into a nursing home.
Now with a kid in tow, Logan spends its time on the brutal nature of family made through adoption or foster care. It’s the gritty realism missing in a world of flash and spectacle as people sit down to steal drugs or scrounge around for the next pay cheque. These mutants are human because they’re wrestling with the same issues of being unable to figure out what’s coming next, and feeling so tired from the day before, wondering when the lights go out for the last time.
Normally the exhaustion comes from the numbing effects of seeing explosions and destruction on such a scale so removed that it actually has no meaning at all. Here in this section of the X-Men universe, it’s the heartache of helping a parent get through the next day. Their mind gone and your own body is taking on that burden of being there for two. Now you have to figure out who this child is because your life wasn’t draining enough. Taking care of someone else so in need leaves you fraying all ends of the rope.
Logan keeps bringing it back to family because that’s what the X-Men have always been about. These outcasts and exiles come together putting their own life on the line to save and protect one another. That’s the scale of saving the world that impacts us to the core. From the petty squabbles, wiping off their drool, or being there to listen to them jabber on about the same thing you were talking about yesterday and the day before. You’re there because of family and the family exists because of you.
And that’s it. You live and fight long enough to find peace and a place in the world only to sit there in the corner of the room wondering about what your legacy will be. What kind of imprint will be left when you’re out of here, and if you’ve done all you can before that last breath gasps its sigh.
Reviewed on Tuesday, 18 April 2017