If nothing else, the “X-Men” series has one of the most interesting revolving casts in any of the various superhero franchises currently being produced.
It was already interesting enough knowing that they were going to push Michael Fassbender and Jennifer Lawrence center-stage for this one to emphasize the love story between Magneto and Mystique. Those two are both such heavy hitters that it sounds genuinely exciting to have them carrying the film. In addition, Channing Tatum is supposed to join the ensemble this time as Gambit, a fan-favorite that was handled poorly in the first “Wolverine” spin-off.
But now comes word that Oscar Isaac is joining the new film “X-Men: Apocalypse,” and that's enormously exciting. I'm eager for people to get a look at JC Chandor's new film “A Most Violent Year” soon, because I think the work Isaac does in it is remarkable. He's been slowly but surely building his reputation over the last few years, and it feels like he's finally getting the notice he deserves as a result. His work in last year's “Inside Llewyn Davis” was honest and richly detailed, and it seems like he's had some huge opportunities finally come his way. He's just recently finished up work on a little indie from England called “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” and I love that we still have no idea who or what he's playing in that film.
Hearing that he's playing Apocalypse in the new “X-Men” gives me even more hope that we're in for something special with this next film in the series. Bryan Singer is directing again, and he's working once more with Simon Kinberg as writer. They've been working from more of a big-picture perspective since Singer's return, thinking about how they can continue to build out the universe as they also try to wrangle everything into a coherent continuity that makes sense of the film series so far.
I like that “First Class” was a '60s film, “Days Of Future Past” was a '70s film, and now “Apocalypse” will be an '80s movie. I'm really curious to see how they handle a young Jean Grey and a young Cyclops in this movie. They have a chance to get those characters right this time, and I'm rooting for them to do it. In the meantime, we can rest easy that they have found someone charismatic enough to stand toe-to-toe with Fassbender, Lawrence, and the rest of this talented ensemble.
“X-Men: Apocalypse” will be in theaters May 27, 2016.