Screen Gems Movie Reviews
with Kennie Bass. You'll find it First On Fox!

The Wolverine August 2, 2013
The Wolverine
Studio: 20th Century Fox
Rating: PG-13 for sequences of intense sci-fi action and violence, some sexuality and language.

Hugh Jackman appears very comfortable as he unsheaths his claws once again in "The Wolverine."

He should. This is the sixth time Jackman has portrayed the mutant member of the X-Men.

In "The Wolverine" we find Jackman's character alone in the wilderness. He's grieving for his lost love Jean Grey. But a stranger finds him and says an old acquaintance wants to say goodbye. It's a man Wolverine saved from the Nagasaki atomic bomb in the latter days of World War II. And the man is dying.

The years have been kind to the former Imperial soldier. Now, he's a rick Japanese industrialist who wants to offer Wolverine "a gift". He wants to take away the hero's mutant healing power which makes him immortal. Wolverine says no, but soon finds his ability to repel injury has been severely compromised.

Following the tycoon's death his grand daughter is in serious danger. Wolverine vows to protect her, but the Yakuza assassins are relentless.

The main criticism over previous Wolverine movies has revolved around how different he is from the character the comic books. This time around they almost get it exactly right. Wolverine's tortured existence and his trek to Japan play out in a deliberate, engaging manner. It's a welcome change from the "end of the world" action we've seen in other comic book movies this summer.

Unfortunately, everything kind of unravels at the climax as Wolverine learns about a secret which could end his life and the life of the woman he's grown to love.

A movie that started with a unique tone ends as a run of the mill battle between a hero and souped up bad guy in a CGI suit of armor.

Thankfully, it's not enough to destroy the really good scenes that came before the finale.

"The Wolverine" is a solid, satisfying tale. I just wish they'd taken more chances with the ending.

On my rating scale, "The Wolverine" earns a TRIPLE.

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