The New Mutants; Thankfully not a Disaster. Grade: C-
Once upon a time, a Marvel film associated with X-Men, by the name of The New Mutants was bound for an early spring release in 2018. But at last The New Mutants was constantly hit by a virus known as The Delay. The Delay would hold back The New Mutants from ever being released in theaters or being dumped on a streaming service. The Delay would be influence by Reshoots, the Disney/Fox merger deal, or just simply no one has any clue just how to release this thing in order to receive a profit. The Delay would take on a huge threat known as Covid-19, a virus much more impactful than The Delay, that it perhaps defeated The Delay as it was finally made possible for The New Mutants to be released. The New Mutants set a release date at the end of summer movie season, the second week upon reopening of movie theater chains such as Regal, Cinemark, and AMC. At least Covid-19 was able to do something useful: By bringing us the damn New Mutants, no one thought it would be possible to exist, but here we are.
The New Mutants tells a story about a young woman named Danielle Moonstar (Blu Hunt), who was taken into this somewhat medical institution, in which caters Mutants with extraordinary powers. The facility has no idea including Moonstar, just what her powers might be, as it becomes a mystery. While Moonstar is asleep in this facility, we start to realize some strange occurrences happening in this facility. The other Mutants deepest darkest nightmares come to life, as each Mutant is terrified. Witness a strange dark tale that caters to horror fans, super hero fans, and heck even if you’re into dramas that deal with teenagers over coming their fears head on, as they learn to love themselves for who they are... WEIRD.
The Cinematography t’was alright I guess. Since this film is targeting horror, I guess it looks suitable, but none of the shots really are memorable nor worth discussing. The Score was fine as well, I do recall this one composed tune I was bobbing my head back and forth. We may see The New Mutants be nominated for Best Visual Effects, due to lack of competition because of that pain in the ass we often repeat time and time again. Is The New Mutants worth being nominated for that Category?! No; but I will say that department deserves it more than The Suicide Squad did for their surprise nomination and win. The best thing I can say about the visual effects, is I actually did thought Illyana’s (Anya Taylor Joy) nightmare, regarding the skinny beings with a happy face mask, as they take off the mask... They looked kind of cool to me. Kind of reminds me of Joey’s special monster card down the road of Yu-Gi-Oh... I used to be a Yu-Gi-Oh nerd when I was young believe it or not sadly. The rest of the effects honestly weren’t that bad, just a couple of extremely corny effects, that reminded me of other past films. Especially regarding the giant bear, that feels too reminiscent to Pixar’s Brave.
The cast all in all were ok as a whole. Blu Hunt playing Danielle Moonstar honestly had the best performance and best character in the entire film. The only character in which had an arc, it’s also a character that is fully developed as this is the only character worth caring about. The character also represents misfits in the world, as if you don’t go by the public standard of what they are looking for in a person, you’re either completely useless or they don’t care about you. Anya Taylor Joy playing Illyana was eh, wasn’t really feeling her somewhat Russian accent. The character itself started out fine, but then gotten completely ridiculous in the third act, that turned me off. Maisie Williams playing Rahne was fine, probably the second best character this film had to offer, as she complimented Moonstar just fine. I didn’t care for Charlie Heaton, thought his performance was odd, as the accent he was trying to pull off was on and off. Weakest performance by far was Alice Braga playing Dr. Reyes, so many scenes in which you can tell she wasn’t really into it, as line delivery was off. The character itself felt completely predictable as well, like you knew exactly where she would end up in the last act.
Listen: I’m actually happy this film exists, I was honestly getting embarrassed with the fact Disney/Fox kept holding this film back from being released. At the end of the day: Disney/Fox were the biggest losers out of all of this. They could’ve made much more money if this was released heck even last year. But because these studio heads over think everything, as they only care about money and nothing else... They played themselves by losing even more money.
The New Mutants honestly is better than what I expected, may not be good but at least it’s better than being flat out terrible. What I can appreciate about The New Mutants is the fact it’s a film at least trying to be something different, compared to the likes of other super hero films. The MCU for example is a franchise in which has become stale at this point, as they repeat the same thing over and over again without taking any risks at all, as their films are just good for a one time watch and nothing else. Not necessarily a bad thing per say, but for me I want to see something original, interesting, and something fresh than being handed the same plate over and over again. The New Mutants does take some risks, some of it works and some of it doesn’t. I actually appreciated the fact this film does have something to say, rather than just being another stupid superhero film. Regarding themes of taking on your fears head on, as you have to work hard at patience and self love to have control of handling your inner demons. I mean self love plays a huge part in this film, as these Mutants are considered monsters, when deep down they’re just regular young adults, that have extraordinary powers that have to be handled properly. The pay off in which Moonstar’s character’s arc was executed just fine, as it made clear sense.
The problem with The New Mutants is the fact it’s not consistent with what’s trying to go for, as they handle quite a few genres at hand. The Drama portion of this film was actually not half bad, coming from the director of The Fault in Our Stars I can see why this element shines brighter than the other two. The film is mainly going towards a horror vibe, as it felt underwhelming for a couple reasons. The horror element of the film is not consistent in anyway, it comes and goes even though you feel a horror vibe at times, it’s just inconsistent. Plus the horror element is extremely weak, as it’s just stupid and unintentionally laughable. I mean the entity in which involves skinny dudes, in a smiley face mask that resembles the likes of EDM Producer Marshmello?! I mean that is just comedy for the wrong reasons. The Super Hero element is noticeable mainly in the third act, as I just felt it was completely unnecessary. Though this is based off X-Men, it’s just completely strange where it fits in this film, as it’s just complete nonsense really.
The story itself is honestly ok. I felt it was too short, as things should’ve been more developed and shown, as things just started and ended too quickly. Plus their are some editing issues, where scenes feel incompleted or scenes in which could’ve had more to where it makes sense. Also there is particular one moment, in which the antagonist of the film wants Moonstar to be eliminated because her power is beyond dangerous. The thing without spoiling, it doesn’t quite make sense, considering the fact the moral purpose of this facility and what these Mutants were designed to do? I mean if you can get a hold of Moonstar, your team would be dangerous, so that didn’t make sense. The fact they whipped up a mediocre film, than creating a disaster like Jonah Hex, Fantastic Four (2015), Batman V Superman, Suicide Squad... It’s honestly an astounding achievement. I’m honestly surprised this somewhat of a manageable film to watch, where you can at least appreciate a few qualities, and not feel as if you hate yourself partaking in watching this film.
Overall, The New Mutants was mediocre. I don’t recommend this film, I rather just wait till rental for this one. -Mitch Smietana