- Parental Guidance for Children Under 13 Years (For Strong Language, Violence and Mild Explicit Content)
Running Time: 133 minutes (2 hours and 14 minutes)
Released on May 2, 2003 (US Release Date, Available for Worldwide Viewing)
Presented by 20th Century Fox
Writers: Daniel Harris, Zak Penn, David Hayter, Michael Dougherty and Brian Singer
Director: Brian Singer
Starring: Hugh Jackman, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Halle Berry, James Marsden, Brian Cox, Famke Janssen, Anna Paquin, Rebecca Romijin, Alan Cumming, Shawn Ashmore and Aaron Stanford
They're the Strangest Heroes of Them All, and they're back with an explosive follow-up to the X-Men franchise called, X2: X-Men United. Welcome once again to Dateline Movies, and today we'll be reviewing the second installment in the X-Men Movie Franchise. It's packed with new villains, cool characters and awesome action. Since Brian Singer's time travelling sequel titled X-Men: Days of Future Past is out now we should probably review this first, the second best X-Men film in the franchise.
What's the movie about?
3 years after the X-Men saved the world from Magneto, played by McKellen (The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring) and his Brotherhood, the team continues to do their regular works on teaching the Mutants of tomorrow. However, a mysterious militant from a past of an X-Man, namely Wolverine, played by Jackman (The Prestige), comes bursting to the door of the X-Mansion. His name is Colonel William Stryker, played by Cox (Manhunter), and he and his forces are out for the X-Men's leader, Professor X, played by Stewart (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine). Why do they want him? They need him to operate their own version of Cerebro, a device made by Professor X to find humans and Mutants alike, all across the world.
Meanwhile, a sinister force threatens to eliminate the President of the United States, with a note to free all of Mutant kind. This force is non other than the elk-like hero named Nightcrawler, played by Cumming (Spy Kids). But could there be more to this than meets the eye? Can Nightcrawler be brainwashed? The X-Men are determined to investigate.
Left with no other options, Wolverine assembles the X-Men, comprising of Cyclops, played by Marsden (Disturbing Behavior), Storm, played by Berry (Swordfish), Jean Grey, played by Janssen (Goldeneye), Iceman, played by Ashmore (The Day), Rogue, played by Paquin (Fly Away Home), Nightcrawler and Pyro, played by Stanford (Tadpole). However, in order to save Professor X and the rest of the world, the X-Men have to make an uneasy alliance with their greatest enemies, Magneto and Mystique, played by Romijin (Austin Powers: The Spy Who Shagged Me). This won't be easy, because they'll be facing a government agency who really hates Mutants and they need to rely on Magneto to help them.
What I think of the movie?
The movie can only be described in one word, Awesome! The most notable aspect of this film is the cast. From Gandalf to Captain Picard, this movie has all the talents. The story is also decent. It shows us a message that properly reflects the modern world, which is how far a certain person would go to destroy something that he or she believes as a threat to our world, even if they don't actually do. In other words, this movie is about the reality of inequality in our world. It even indirectly addresses issues like racism and hate crime. The movie is also undeniably faithful to it's source material, which is the powerful X-Men story, "God Loves, Man Kills", which is about Reverend Stryker (instead of colonel) causing mass mutant genocide all over the world. The ending is bitter sweet, because the conclusion shows the presumed death of Cyclops's fiancee, Jean Grey. We also saw the tears shed by the fellow X-Men. Overall, this film is a magnificent masterpiece crafted by a talented Brian Singer's directional techniques. It's moving, timeless, and outstanding in all proportions.
I am really pumped to watch the sequel, Days of Future Past, which would feature Peter Dinklage, who will play Bolivar Trask, the man who would build the murderous Sentinels, which would end the world. We all know him as Tyrion Lannister from the acclaimed television series, Game of Thrones. What makes it more exciting is that both the cast of First Class (which is set on the 60s when the X-Men first formed) and the present roster of the team, including Magneto and a reborned Professor X (who died, with Jean Grey and Cyclops on X-Men: The Last Stand). I hope they bring back Cyclops and Jean Grey in the film since they played major roles on the X-Men's expeditions.
With that, I hope you have enjoyed this review of X2: X-Men United here on Dateline Movies. Be sure to Like, Tweet or Share before you leave. Do you have a movie you wish to be featured or a list topic you want to talk about? Comment below, and I might just use your suggestion. Thank you again!
1. The X-Verse - I would put all these Hidden Surprises one by one if I could, but it's gonna hurt me a lot. So I decided I'll do this really big surprise in a single one. In the scene where Mystique disguised herself as Lady Deathstrike, she accessed the computer, and while she's collecting data, we get to see (if you can) nearly every name of an X-Man, a Marvel hero or villain. Listed below are the identified names discovered.
List of Hidden Surprises discovered on Surprise 1:
Folders Monitor (Bottom of Second Picture):
A. Omega Red
C. Muir Island
A. Remy LeBeau
B. Eric M. Lensherr
C. Ororo Munroe
D. Jamie Madrox
E. Kevin McTaggert
G. Danielle Moonstar
H. Xi'an Coy Mahn
I. Artie Maddicks
J. Keniucho Harada
K. Guthrie (2, Paige and Samuel Guthrie)
L. Garrison Kane
Other Hidden Surprises (Unconfirmed Discoveries by Others)
A. Fred Dukes
B. Victor Creed
C. Elizabeth Braddock
D. Bobby Drake
E. Amara Aquila
F. John Allerdyce
G. Maria Callasantos
H. Angelo Espinosa
I. Lorna Dane
J. Roberto Da Costa
K. Sally Blevins
L. Kyle Gibney
M. Alison Blaire
N. Cassidy (2, possibly Sean, Thomas, and or Theresa, )
O. Legacy Virus
Q. Alpha Flight
R. Department H
S. Weapon X
T. Beta Flight
U. Operation: Zero Tolerance
V. The Brotherhood (This is not Magneto's Brotherhood of Mutants)
W. Bolivar Trask
X. Gamma Flight
Y. Danger Room Schematics
Z. Wade Wilson
AA. Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters
BB. Nathaniel Essex
CC. Salem Center
DD. The Blackbird Blueprints
EE. Massachusetts Academy
FF. Jonas Graymalkin
GG. Scott Summers
HH. Cecilia Reyes
JJ. Tabitha Smith
LL. Kurt Wagner
MM. Katherine Pryde
NN. James Braddock Jr.
OO. Nicole and Claudette St. Croix
PP. Raven Darkholme
QQ. Illyana Rasputin
RR. Christoph Nord
SS. Vanessa Carlysle
TT. Yuriko Oyama
UU. Everett Thomas
VV. Ruth Bat-Seraph
WW. Andrea and Andreas Von Strucker
XX. Douglas Ramsey
YY. Karl Lykos
ZZ. Guido Carosella
AAA. Shiro Yoshida
BBB. Calvin Rankin
CCC. Mortimer Toynbee
DDD. Rahne Sinclair
There are several more of them but they are so many to count. See if you can spot them in your DVD.
For more information about the listed characters, please click their respective links, and comment below if I missed something.
3. To Serve and Protect - Bryan Singer again makes another cameo in the movie. As Mystique, who is disguised as Lady Deathstrike, scrolls through the computer files, where we saw the first Hidden Surprises, the profiles of the security guards are shown, one of which is Bryan Singer. The other guards are the other people that gave contribution to the movie and several other films in the X-Men franchise.
4. X-Man of Steel (Not That Guy!) - During Stryker's forces' attack on the X-Mansion, there were several identified Mutant children attempting to escape and tried to find protection from them. One of which was Colossus, the Russian X-Man of Steel (like I said, not that guy you're thinking). Colossus is notable for turning his skin, into a powerful armor of metal. He was spotted at the scene where in a student was nearly captured, until he transformed into metal. After the failed attempt of the hostiles, Colossus threw one of them into a wooden wall. Daniel Cudmore played him in this cameo, and returned as Colossus again in X-Men: The Last Stand.
For more information about Colossus, click here.
For more information about Kitty Pryde, click here.
For more information about Siryn, click Theresa in one of the list of Hidden Surprise Number 1 and for his father, click here.
8. Beam Me Up, Scotty!: On the scene where in Magneto's Brotherhood and the X-Men were flying on their jet, take a look at the radar of the jet. It carries Star Trek symbols. This is an in-joke because Patrick Stewart, who played Professor X in the franchise, played Captain Picard in Star Trek: The Next Generation and onwards.
9. You Made Me: When Storm and Jean Grey tracked Nightcrawler in an abandoned church, the three talked and when Jean Grey mentioned the word "professor", Nightcrawler's look gave a face of familiarization. The Professor is the man that made the Adamantium skeleton for Wolverine. Although he is not present in the movie, he beard striking resemblance to Stryker here.
For more information about the Professor, click here.