Friday, December 18, 2009

Next "X-Men" Movie: Good News And Bad News

Bryan Singer, who directed the first two X-Men movies before departing to direct 2006's Superman Returns (leaving Brett Ratner to direct the very disappointing X-Men: The Last Stand), has returned to the franchise. He has now reportedly signed on to direct the next installment, tentatively titled X-Men: First Class. That's the good news. The bad news is that this new film is apparently a "prequel" to the others. It will reportedly tell the story of Professor Xavier and Magneto’s first meeting and the founding of the Xavier Institute, featuring younger versions of the X-Men.

After years of conditioning, I have an almost Pavlovian negative response to the term "prequel." How may terrible prequels have there been? The three recent Star Wars films are perhaps the most notorious examples. But do you remember that 1984's Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom was also as "prequel"? As was 2002's The Scorpion King, and 2007's Hannibal Rising? Have there ever been any good "prequels"? The best I can think of off-hand (like the recent Underworld: Rise of The Lycans) were at best serviceable, or maybe "better than expected."

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