I am going to open this rant with a single word so that you know what I am about to rant about before that rant begins. Characterization. If you are not a true fan of the X-men (meaning never read much into the comics maybe like the movies), you will almost undoubtedly have no problem with this movie. If you are a true X-men fan, you will almost undoubtedly be full of rage after watching it. Spoilers will follow. Okay let's begin.
In 2014, after watching Bryan Singer completely retcon that tragedy that was X-men 3: The Last Stand, after watching the credits roll by, I was elated for the reveal that the next X-men movie, sure not to flop after Days of Future Past's great success, would feature Apocalypse. As time continued on and I watched trailer after trailer, I saw things that drove my excitment. Things like "post Yukio meeting" Storm, Archangel, and my favorite psychic ninja, Psylocke. But then I saw things that worried me- Way too much Jennifer Lawrence, dozens of never before introduced characters, and Apocalypse's overall look. My fear was well warranted.
The first thing that got to me was the simple dismissal of Fred Dukes (The Blob) and the fact that Angel... rich kid Warren Worthington III (whose name they didn't say even friggin' ONCE during the movie), is a cage fighter. Wrong answer. Aside from a complete personality mismatch, Angel was downplayed in every other respect. We don't know anything about who his character is, where he's from, nothing. All we know from the movie is that he is a cagefighter... which isn't even remotely comic accurate.
Mystique. Would someone like to tell me why all of a sudden Mystique, a horrible, horrible person, is suddenly the mutant messiah? Why is Jennifer Lawrence in this movie instead of Mystique? Why do we see her blue in only two or three scenes? Completely out of character. Mystique is COMFORTABLE in her skin. That is the way she wants the world to view her and yet... we get J-Law. Furthermore, MYSTIQUE IS NOT AN X-MAN. This movie has effectively turned Mystique into a front and center protagonist when that isn't what she is, at all. Bad misreading on character.
And then Storm wants to be like Mystique? So let's erase her nobility and have her idolize a person she's never seen before. Storm was a thief in her younger years yes, but did she not become a goddess because Apocalypse so dubbed her to be, she did not gain her power or white hair from Apocalypse in the way that the movie implies. Storm is a multi-layered character that they relegated to a nobody that was only exalted thanks to Apocalypse's influence.
Apocalypse is not Apocalypse at all, except for in ethnic origin and name. His powerset supercedes that of what Apocalypse is supposed to be and he becomes both Ultron (taking in the history of the world through a television set) and apparently Proteus (jumping from body to body, power to alter reality). Nonsense. The power given to Apocalypse in this movie is so outrageous it makes no sense. They start off alright with his "Survival of the Fittest" pitch. Then he wants to destroy the world. Then he wants to BE the world. Honestly this guy doesn't know what he wants, does he?
So to end this quickly, so that I my stunt my ramble, let's hit the last few things things I hate. List of characters that get no character development: Everyone except Magneto and Professor X. No JUBILEE DEVELOPMENT (that hurt me). Havok's death is pointless. Angel's death is lame. Jean is Sansa. Not the actress. Jean. Because she acts exactly like Sansa. Nightcrawler can teleport easily into places he can't see. Magneto is a gullible. Scott is a crying baby, the entire movie. Wolverine was forced in where he didn't fit. Pyslocke had to save Storm, who should have been perfectly capable of saving herself. Psylocke was a complete disappointment... okay the list goes on but I digress.
At one point Magento says "You want to know my powers, not who I am." I feel like this is a perfect metaphor for Singer's thoughts on the X-men. He almost deliberately, completely ignored the character's personalities and capabilities and seemed only interested in their powers and fan popularity. Well guess what? Good job, because he made every true X-man fan angry at the mess that this movie was and how much of a slight it was to the legacy that is meant to be Apocalypse. This felt nothing like an X-men movie, because the X-men are about the people, and to the director, the people didn't matter in the least. They were just props with powers, and for a Superhero Soap Opera like X-men, that is truly sad.
Was this a horrible movie? No. After all that I said, no. Some people like movies for the effects, fighting and generally easy to follow plot. Was this a horrible X-men movie? ABSOLUTELY. If you are not a fan you may shrug the movie off as okay. If you are a fan, who know just how bad they butchered these characters, you are probably as angry as I am right now, and you have a right to be. Pretty much the only good things in this movie were the special effects, some of the fighting, and of course Quicksilver. Everyone's acting was "meh", save for Apocalypse, the Professor and Magneto. And again like I said at the beginning. There was no characterization. We had no reason to feel anything for the characters because we couldn't get to know them, and that is a huge mistake. I'm done. I give this movie a 4/10, and again, that is only for the few palatable scenes it has to offer.