This week’s new releases: Mr. Peabody & Sherman and X-Men: Days of Future Past.
MR. PEABODY & SHERMAN
Running Time: 92 mins.
OFRB Rating: G
Starring: Ty Burrell, Max Charles, Ariel Winter, Leslie Mann, Patrick Warburton, Stanley Tucci, Mel Brooks, Stephen Colbert, Allison Janney, Stephen Tobolowsky, Dennis Haysbert, Lauri Fraser, and Lake Bell
Verdict: The secondary characters from The Rocky and Bullwinkle Show get a feature-length adaptation, despite youngsters being oblivious to the time-travelling boy and dog and original fans being too old to have much interest in this pedestrian animated tale. Ty Burrell has fun with the voice of Mr. Peabody, toggling between superciliousness and hysteria, but many of the other performances feel phoned in. Worse still is the script, which feels like a stale mash-up of Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, Meet the Robinsons, and the Wallace & Gromit movies. Generally amusing, but a bit below DreamWorks Animation’s usual standards. (3 STARS / 5)
X-MEN: DAYS OF FUTURE PAST
Running Time: 131 mins.
OFRB Rating: PG (violence, tobacco use)
Starring: Hugh Jackman, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Nicholas Hoult, Peter Dinklage, Patrick Stewart, Ian McKellen, Ellen Page, Halle Berry, Evan Peters, Shawn Ashmore, Omar Sy, Bingbing Fan, and Josh Helman
Verdict: X-Men: Days of Future Past works as a time-travel movie, as a period piece, as a dystopian thriller, and as a superhero movie. While the science of its time travel is gobbledegook, it’s treated with the same grit and gravitas of the Terminator movies. Much as how The Avengers was really a sequel to Thor but didn’t require foreknowledge of it, Days of Future Past is less a crossover picture than a sequel to X-Men: First Class, but it succeeds perfectly well as without having seen the 2011 origin story. Bryan Singer’s return to the universe of Marvellous mutants after more than a decade away manages perhaps his most impressive feat of all: seven movies into the series, X-Men: Days of Future Past is the most solidly constructed and all-around best X-Men movie yet. (4½ STARS / 5)