X-Men Apocalypse’s early criticisms received a 7.9 on IMDB, mostly user generated, yet a 50% on Rotten Tomatoes, and a 51% on Metacritic. Professional critic scores tend to be harsher than those of the general public but inundated reviews of “Been there done that” and “Stale content” does cause an alarm.
But is the cause for the low score due to poor timing? With the release of Civil War just weeks prior, could critics just be comparing two different styles of comic book movies from two different studios?
A big frontrunner for top grossing movie, Civil War is crushing the box office with a $942.9 million report with a high 90% score of “Fresh” on Rotten Tomatoes. It doesn’t look like Apocalypse is going to meet anywhere near that goal with reviews like:
"Messier and heavier than Days Of Future Past, this is not so much the next step in the XMen’s evolution as a failed callback to past glories."
-Helen O’hara, Empire
In light of all that, it does seem the new cast of young actors to portray once beloved characters will perform well. But not everyone that shines get a fair amount of screentime. Maybe standards of a large cast of well-written characters have changed since the extreme success of Joss Whedon’s Avengers (no, not the mess that was Age of Ultron). Or maybe we’re starting to feel that superhero fatigue (not good news for the upcoming Justice League films that haven’t even had the chance to shine).
Ultimately, despite mixed to low review scores, the main determinant of our own opinion is seeing the movie ourselves. But if the new XMen direction is to go back to the style of the old trilogy, then take it back. I don’t want it.