The X-Men: First Class review buzz has been getting better and better for the last week or so. In fact, Rotten Tomatoes has collected only one negative review so far, as the first class has gotten otherwise perfect marks. That may not stay the same when the film finally comes out Friday, but it is already clear that the X-Men are the big hits of the summer, at least with critics.
So far, this has actually been a better than average summer season, in spite of decided pans for The Hangover 2 and Pirates of the Caribbean 4. Other than that, however, the likes of Thor, Bridesmaids and Kung Fu Panda 2 have gotten big box office and critical raves already.
Yet X-Men: First Class has the highest reviews to date for the year, with a 98 percent positive rating thus far on Rotten Tomatoes. The consensus reads that “With a strong script, stylish direction, and powerful performances from its well rounded cast” the movie is “a welcome return to form for the franchise.”
The fifth installment of a franchise usually isn’t regarded as the best; this is the second prequel of the series. But this is actually the second “fivequel” to earn high marks from critics this year, after Fast Five got surprisingly good reviews for reviving the Fast and the Furious franchise in late April.
The fresh scores for that film may have served as a harbinger of things to come, since four out of the first six big releases in May and June have been fresh. In addition, Super 8 is expected to continue that trend next weekend, and already has early raves from its first review batch Wednesday.
But after that, things are more uncertain, as fingers are crossed for Green Lantern, Cars 2 and Transformers 3 in the next three weeks. Green Lantern is building itself up from its mixed opening trailer, while Cars 2 is a sequel to the least perfect Pixar movie ever. There are tentative hopes that Transformers 3 won’t be a train wreck like the last film was.
If these movies prove popular with critics and audiences, it will be another sign that this could be a stronger summer than usual. Yet the bar for the season might have already been set by X-Men,as it appears to have revived a superhero franchise that was declared dead a few years ago.
By giving the series new life, and its best reviews yet in its fifth installment, First Class could be one of the major success stories of the summer. However, audiences and fans will find out for themselves starting Friday.
Rotten Tomatoes- “X-Men: First Class”