X-Men: Days of Future Past

Film

Action and adventure

X-Men: Days of Future Past

Time Out rating:

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Time Out says

Tue May 13

What’s Michael Fassbender out to prove this summer? That he can look leading-man cool in silly headgear? First it was Frank Sidebottom’s grinning papier mâché mug in ‘Frank’. Now he’s back in Magneto’s S&M-meets-Viking helmet for Bryan Singer’s time-hopping new instalment of Marvel's ‘X-Men’ series – a bouncy and fun but brain-achingly confusing blockbuster. Seriously, if you don’t know your ‘X-Men’, don’t make this your starter film. Or at least take a geek to whisper the backstory as you watch.

Singer doesn’t hang about. He kicks things off in the apocalyptic future, with humanity under attack from giant man-made robots called Sentinels – invented by brainiac scientist Bolivar Trask (nice work from Peter Dinklage, playing it straight rather than all scheming Dr Evil). It’s the end of the world as we know it. So Professor Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and Magneto (Ian McKellen) patch up their differences and dispatch Logan/Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) back in time to the 1970s to throw a claw in Dr Trask’s masterplan.

Most of the action takes place in the 1970s, where Logan has never looked more at home – in the thick of all those sideburns and bare man-chests. The Vietnam War is over, and mutants are soon to become Public Enemy Number One. Logan finds the young prof Xavier (James McAvoy) drunk. Meanwhile, naughty Magneto (Fassbender) is in maximum-security lock-up again. There’s a brilliantly inventive set-piece as the gang busts him free: cocky teenage mutant Quicksilver (Evan Peters, a keeper), whose superpower is lightning speed, outfoxes the military police. Time appears to crawl to a standstill around him, glass shattering in a slow-motion ballet as he changes the direction of bullets.

It all trots along at a brisk pace with genuinely impressive special effects and decent gags. Bryan Singer really cares about his mutant outcasts, weaving just enough drama into the superhero shenanigans. When you’re asking actors to spout nonsense quantum physics while dressed like backing dancers at a gay club, it helps if they’re an A-team cast of heavyweights like this. Best of all is shape-shifting assassin Mystique (Jennifer Lawrence), slipping from her snakey-blue skin into any form she chooses – a one-woman mutant army. It’s through her character, radicalised by the human attacks on mutants, that Singer explores his theme of mutants as a metaphor for minorities.

Just don’t expect to have a clue what’s going on. You won’t need to by the end anyway – at which point Singer wipes the slate clean for the ‘X-Men’ films of the future. Talking of which, don’t leave before the credits have run if you want a taste of what’s coming next.

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Release details

UK release:

Thu May 22, 2014

Cinemas showing X-Men: Days of Future Past

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  • Address:

    Cineworld Shaftesbury Avenue Trocadero
    W1D 7HD

  • Venue phone:

    0871 200 2000

  • Venue website:

    www.cineworld.co.uk

  • Transport:

    Tube: Piccadilly Circus

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    1. Cineworld Shaftesbury Avenue
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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:15
    • 20:15

Apollo Piccadilly Circus

19 Regent St, London, SW1Y 4LR Show map/details

  • Address:

    Apollo Piccadilly Circus 19 Regent St
    London
    SW1Y 4LR

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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 18:45
  • Tue Aug 26:

    • 21:00
  • Wed Aug 27:

    • 21:00
  • Thu Aug 28:

    • 21:00

Cineworld Fulham Road

142 Fulham Road, SW10 9QR Show map/details

  • Address:

    Cineworld Fulham Road 142 Fulham Road
    SW10 9QR

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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:40
    • 20:35

Cineworld West India Quay

11 Hertsmere Road, West India Quay, London, E14 4AN Show map/details

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    Cineworld West India Quay 11 Hertsmere Road
    West India Quay
    London
    E14 4AN

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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:30

Cineworld Wandsworth

Southside Wandsworth High St, London, SW18 7NR Show map/details

  • Address:

    Cineworld Wandsworth Southside Wandsworth High St
    London
    SW18 7NR

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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:20
    • 20:20

Hammersmith Cineworld

207 Kings Street, W6 9JT Show map/details

  • Address:

    Hammersmith Cineworld 207 Kings Street
    W6 9JT

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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 16:30
    • 19:30

Cineworld At The O2, Greenwich

The O2, Peninsula Square, London, SE10 0DX Show map/details

  • Address:

    The O2
    Cineworld At The O2, Greenwich Peninsula Square
    London
    SE10 0DX

  • Venue phone:

    0871 200 2000

  • Venue website:

    www.cineworld.co.uk

  • Transport:

    Tube: North Greenwich

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    1. The O2
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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:10
    • 20:10

Cineworld Wood Green

Shopping City, High St, London, N22 6YQ Show map/details

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    Cineworld Wood Green Shopping City
    High St
    London
    N22 6YQ

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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:20
    • 20:20

Cineworld Wembley

1-3, London Designer Outlet, Wembley Park Boulevard, Wembley, HA9 0TG Show map/details

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    1-3
    Cineworld Wembley London Designer Outlet, Wembley Park Boulevard
    Wembley
    HA9 0TG

  • Venue phone:

    0871 200 2000

  • Venue website:

    www.cineworld.co.uk

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    Rail: Wembley Stadium; Tube: Wembley Park

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    1. Cineworld Wembley
      • 1-3
        London Designer Outlet, Wembley Park Boulevard
        Wembley
        HA9 0TG
      • 0871 200 2000
      • www.cineworld.co.uk
      • 51.557279,-0.282799
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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 18:20

Cineworld Enfield

208, Southbury Leisure Park, Southbury Road, Enfield, EN1 1YQ Show map/details

  • Address:

    208
    Cineworld Enfield Southbury Leisure Park, Southbury Road
    Enfield
    EN1 1YQ

  • Venue phone:

    0871 200 2000

  • Venue website:

    www.cineworld.co.uk

  • Transport:

    BR: Enfield Town

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    1. Cineworld Enfield
      • 208
        Southbury Leisure Park, Southbury Road
        Enfield
        EN1 1YQ
      • 0871 200 2000
      • www.cineworld.co.uk
      • 51.65213,-0.061518
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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 17:20
    • 20:30
  • Address:

    Bexleyheath Broadway DA6 7JN

  • Transport:

    Rail: Bexleyheath

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    1. Bexleyheath Broadway
      • DA6 7JN
      • 51.456189,0.146477
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  • Thu Aug 21:

    • 16:40
    • 19:50

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