I borrowed The Wolverine (2013) from our local library last month. This is the sequel to that not-very-good X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009) film that came out 2009. I didn’t watch all of Origins, but I watched enough to be traumatized. Although I find Wolverine to certainly be an interesting character, he is not my favorite. So I find it interesting that all of the X-Men related films since 2000 have heavily featured Hugh Jackman (as Wolverine), including the recent X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014) film. That’s a lot of Wolverine in my book, but oh well.
The film starts off with a flashback to 1945, where Logan is held prisoner in a Japanese POW camp, but saves the life of a Japanese soldier named Yashida. The film resumes with Wolverine in the present day (post X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)) living as a hermit or recluse out in the Yukon territories. He is found by by a mysterious woman wielding a samurai sword named Yukio. She brings him to Japan to meet her master Yashida, tying the story back to the flashback at the beginning of the story. Yashida is rich but now dying of old age.
As you may have learned from the various trailers, Logan “loses” his healing ability (or at least it gets seriously impaired.) He ends up running around Japan with the heir to the Yashida fortune, Mariko, trying to protect her from mysterious ninjas and Yakuza gang members. There is a lot of running around. There’s also a very tall blonde female scientist who acts she is up to something, which will continue to make you ask, “Ok, what’s her deal?”
The film is pretty decent, but it felt a bit long after the 90 min mark. At that point, I was really looking forward to finding out who was Silver Samurai, and getting a conclusion from the story. Be warned that it gets a little cartoony (in terms of plot and CGI action) towards the end. There is a teaser after the credits that I thought was probably more interesting than the entire film, so don’t miss it.