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Trailer Talk: X-Men: First Class

Trailer Talk: X-Men: First Class

The Cuban Mutant Crisis
Feb 24, 2011

X-Men had it all. Mutants. Psychics. Personal rivalries. It dealt with themes of identity, racism and relationships. Oh and it had giant robots too!

The X-Men have always been one of the most iconic and popular of the superhero comics, and their transition to the movies was an unlikely success, helped by excellent casting and a serious treatment of the material. The first couple of movie adaptations by director Bryan Singer really lived up to the promise the series held, however after the weak third entry X-Men: The Last Stand, and the highly disappointing prequel X-Men Origins: Wolverine, fans were worried that the latest entry into the franchise, X-Men: First Class, would continue the downward trend. Then, this trailer debuted.

X-Men: First Class has been in the works for some time under the guidance of promising English director Matthew Vaughn (Kick-Ass, Stardust), alongside the planned Wolverine movies of which the second is now in production (though after the first one, that might not be the best idea). Like the Wolverine movie, X-Men: First Class centres around some of the iconic characters from the original X-Men in their younger days; namely Charles Xavier (Professor X), played by James McAvoy (The Last Station)  and Erik Lehnsherr (Magneto), played Michael Fassbender (Inglourious Basterds).

First Class takes us back to a time when Charles and Erik were still close friends and allies, telling the story of how they founded the school for mutants that would eventually harbor the likes of Wolverine and Storm. In the trailer, we we are introduced to the Cold War paranoia of the 60s and 70s as President John F. Kennedy addresses the nation on the threat of the Cuban Missile silos. The crisis presents the perfect opportunity for Charles and Erik and their fledgling class of mutants to strut their stuff and intervene in Cuba, presumably saving the world from nuclear destruction.

From here we are treated to a feast of spectacular visuals and an array of fan-pleasing mutant cameos; most notably Mystique and Emma Frost. But as the trailer draws to a close, the real meat of the story is finally highlighted; the growing and inevitable tension between Charles Xavier and Erik Lehnsherr, and their eventual transformation into rival mutant leaders Professor X and Magneto.

After the disaster that was X-Men Origins: Wolverine, there’s reason to be suspect about another origins film. However, from the look and tone of the trailer, First Class is shaping up rather well. The action seems sharp and engaging. The story appears straightforward and immediately coherent. Most important of all, the relationship between Charles and Erik looks to be front and centre. At the end of the day, the drama between those characters will determine the success of the film in the eyes of fans. We have to believe their friendship and subsequent falling out resulted in one of the most famous comic book feuds in history.

For now, colour me optimistic as this trailer for X-Men: First Class is right on the money. But what do you think; does First Class look like it will be worth the wait? Or will it be another Wolverine? Sound off below!

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