The X-Men timeline is a complete mess. Say McAvoy and Fassbender are playing 30ish year old characters in First Class, which was set in the 60’s. Apocalypse is set in the 80’s, making the characters at least 50. Do they look 50? No they do not. Has Havoc aged 20 years? No he has not. Using time travel to fix the X-Men continuity was a good idea but it’s been completely bodged as each film wants to use a different decade as a backdrop.
So continuity aside, how does Apocalypse fare?
It’s a real mixed bag. Whilst Apocalypse and his Horseman do a whole lot of standing around we get introduced to another new set of young X-Men who show a lot of promise. In the incessant chase to end the world once again however, we’re only given top level information – introduction to powers and the seeds of future relationships – though once again the ageing process takes a back seat.
On the positive side there are some amazingly comic-accurate scenes here. If you grew up with the animated TV series there are some very cool things to see.
The film is best summed up by Fassbender. His early scenes are powerful and heart-breaking but it all descends into an orgy of power usage. From great acting to near zero acting. Very frustrating.
Apocalypse isn’t without things to enjoy. With another great Quicksilver sequence, some cool action with well cast youngsters and a stunningly violent cameo it has it all going on visually. It’s just the story that let’s it down. Perhaps the characters could be the focus in the future and not whatever catastrophe they face.