X-men: First Class

7.72 h 11 min2011X-RayHDRUHDPG-13
The uncanny comic book mutants come together for the first time to face a power-mad ex-Nazi in this sensational origins story.
Matthew Vaughn
James McAvoyMichael FassbenderRose Byrne
Science FictionAdventureAction
English [CC]
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EnglishEnglish [Audio Description]
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Supporting actors
January JonesOliver PlattKevin Bacon
Lauren Shuler DonnerBryan SingerSimon KinbergGregory Goodman
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
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Alcohol usefoul languagesmokingnuditysexual contentviolence
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4.7 out of 5 stars

11633 global ratings

  1. 78% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 14% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 6% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

joel wingReviewed in the United States on May 16, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
Reprise of original Lee/Kirby message of X-Men being blacks fighting for equal rights
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20th Century Fox finished its first run of three X-Men movies in 2006 with X-Men: The Last Stand. In 2011 they began a new series which would start back in the 1960s and cover each decade after that as the group progressed. That would start with X-Men First Class set in the 1960s and directed by Matthew Vaughn. The story harkens back to the original concept Stan Lee and Jack Kirby had for when they created the X-men which was equal rights for African Americans. The mutants were blacks and the regular humans were whites. The mutants were always fighting to be accepted and not seen as different and a threat.

There would be a new cast featuring James McAvoy as Professor Xavier, Michael Fassbender as Erik Lehnsherr aka Magneto, Jennifer Lawrence as Raven aka Mystique, Nichols Hoult as Hank McCoy the Beast, Ross Byrne as Moira MacTaggert, Lucas Till as Alex Summers aka Havok, Edi Gathegi as Darwin, Zoe Kravits as Angel, and Caleb Landry Jones as Sean Cassidy aka Banshee. The bad guys would be the Hellfire Club with Kevin Bacon as Sebastian Shaw, January Jones as Emma Frost, Jason Flemyng as Azazel, and Alex Gonzalez as Riptide.

The movie begins by introducing some of the main characters and themes they will touch on. A young Erik Lehnsherr is in a German concentration camp during World War II where he is experimented upon by Sebastian Shaw. It then flashes to the present where Erik is intent upon using his mutant powers to get revenge upon those that ran the camp with Shaw at the top of the list. Charles Xavier and Raven meet at his house when they were children. Then it flashes to when Xavier is in college writing about mutation. Then Moira MacTaggert is in Las Vegas working for the CIA where she discovers the Hellfire Club led by Shaw that also includes Emma Frost, Riptide and Azazel. They are manipulating the U.S. and Soviet governments for some scheme. That encounter leads MacTaggert to Xavier’s work on mutants. The stage is then set. Working initially under the CIA Xavier and MacTaggert form their own group of mutants, that would become the X-Men, to counter Shaw and the Hellfire Club. They would recruit Magneto, Mystique, Beast, Havok, Darwin, Angel and Banshee. There’s a hilarious scene where they approach Wolverine as well who tells them to screw off.

Given that the movie is based in the 1960s it also gives homage to the original message that Stan Lee and Jack Kirby tried to convey with the X-Men. That was the struggle of African Americans for civil rights. Mutants were black people searching for acceptance and power and split between two paths to achieve that. There was Xavier who was Martin Luther King talking about co-existence between blacks and whites, mutants and humans in the comic, and then there was Magneto who was Malcolm X talking about using any means necessary to ensure the protection of mutants/blacks. You see that message playing out early on in the film when Xavier is flirting with a girl in a bar and says “mutant and proud” followed by Raven saying the same thing in the next scene and talking about whether she would be accepted. That phrase is a take off of the 60s slogan “I’m black and I’m proud" made famous by a James Brown song of the same title. Then there’s a scene where Erik tells Mystique that if he looked like her he wouldn’t change a thing, which was meant to instill pride in mutation, similar to how blacks used to say black is beautiful. Later on, Xavier and Erik are playing chess on the stairs of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. talking about the future of mutants, whether they should work with the government or not. That’s where Martin Luther King gave his famous “I have a dream” speech about his vision for race relations in America. Shaw actually takes up the argument made by Magneto in the comics at first, but then at the end Magneto articulates them himself. The split between Xavier and Erik is symbolic of the split between King and Malcolm X

There are also some new Marvel homages and Easter Eggs. One of the agents at the CIA is named Stryker, who is the father of William Stryker who was prominent in the X2 and X-Men Days of Future Past movies. Raven goes through a series of transformations trying to seduce Magneto and that includes transforming into Rebecca Romijn who played Mystique in the first three X-Men movies. Some aspects of the uniforms the X-Men wear such as the target on Havok, the wings on Banshee, and the red suit of Magneto at the end are based upon the unis seen in the comics. Some things that didn’t work were Azazel who looked exactly like Nightcrawler with the same power, but with red skin.

Overall, this was a good reboot of the X-Men. Last Stand had some memorable moments but had such a bad ending that it was a real disservice to the franchise. First Class gave it a fresh new look that would play out well across the following films as well. The characters were strong and engaging. Technology allowed for much better fight scenes especially the really big ones such as when Erik attacks Shaw on a yacht or the final confrontation where two huge fleets one Soviet and one American stand off during the Cuban Missile Crisis and then turn their guns on the mutants. My one major complaint is that Darwin dies in the film. Having the black character be the first to pass away is a Hollywood cliche which unfortunately this movie perpetuated.
13 people found this helpful
WellspringReviewed in the United States on June 22, 2019
5.0 out of 5 stars
Loved this movie
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I was over the X-Men franchise years and years ago. And that was before Marvel showed us how good a comic movie could be.

This movie breathed new life into X-Men. Would anyone seriously have believed that someone could step up to the plate and match McKellen and Stewart? Damn if Fassbender and McAvoy didn't do exactly that. Fassbender comes across as driven, principled, self-righteous... a man who was unfortunate enough to experience the world as it really is and understands the need to be ruthless when sheltered idealists hide from the truth. McAvoy is the perfect young Charles: a thoughtful man who knows the need for principle and sees the potential for cooperation because he can literally see into the hearts of men, and sees in his friend a good man who makes bad decisions because he's fighting his own demons, not the battle at hand.

The setting is the swinging early 60s and cold war politics, perfect for James Bond adventures. The soundtrack alone catches the theme perfectly, plus good writing and directing.

The supporting performances are mostly good. We had a good villain (albeit the stock predictable Nazi world-conquering baddie). Kevin Bacon plays him perfectly. Hoult and Byrne deliver excellent performances.

For all the grief she gets, Jennifer Lawrence did a great job as well. I think it was a mistake to make her the hinge for the rebooted franchise, much as too much of a good thing (wolverine) hampered the old edition. But her extreme body issues, unrequited love for Charles, and sheer loneliness gave her Mystique-ishness some depth and believability.

At the center of the story is the Erik/Charles bromance, and that worked very well. Overall a good movie, maybe the best in the rebooted series. I kind of wished they had stayed in this time period for a while instead of rushing headlong to the present.
11 people found this helpful
Brian ChildersReviewed in the United States on September 10, 2016
4.0 out of 5 stars
DVD review
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since I'm still a DVD collector, this will be a review for the DVD itself, as well as the box. All I'll say about the movie is, I absolutely love it, especially Magneto.

As you see in the picture from Amazon, as well as my own pictures, it comes with a really cool slip cover, featuring Magneto. The actual DVD case has a completely different picture.

The only bad thing about this DVD, is the unfortunate lack of special features, so if those are important to you, I advise looking into another release.

The DVD does come with a digital copy. The video quality of the DVD is very good, for a DVD of course. Not HD, but I'd say as close to it as you can get with a DVD.

If you are still a DVD collector, due to not wanting to switch formats, or price, you can't go wrong here if you enjoy the X-Men movies!
12 people found this helpful
jchugoReviewed in the United States on June 17, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
First Class A Blu-Ray "Must Have" for Any Movie Collector
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Usually what happens when I buy movies that are part of a trilogy or series, is that I buy them individually, and then the studio decides to release an 'ultimate collectors edition' that packages all of the movies together... LOL. Oh well. I don't mind it so much when I enjoy the movies. Xmen - First Class is no exception. I definitely was surprised when they decided to do a 'reboot', but I believe it worked in their favor since it was good to get some fresh faces and a different take on the X-Men movie franchise.

I thought the writing was smart in positioning these characters away from the movies that were already done previously while also introducing some mutant characters that were in the original comics but not written into the earlier film adaptations. I also like the idea that real historic events are used to tell a story and make the overall plot a little more believable... for a Sci-Fi movie.

Super important to know where the Xmen came from.... not just a superhero team that automatically existed to save humanity. It's also nice that these marvel movies are portraying characters that make mistakes, and not perfect.... I think that is part of the success of this movie. Not just overall good/evil, but bending the rules a bit.

Another disc included for extras... Not a whole lot, but a lot for the movie lovers. Again, I'm going to reference my first comment that they will probably release a collection with even more extras, but definitely get a good bang for your buck with this blu-ray disc.
8 people found this helpful
Bob EvansReviewed in the United States on August 6, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
A Super Hero Origin Story Supreme
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I am not a big superhero movie fan or even an Xmen acolyte, in fact I dont think I ever got through an Xmen movie before. This was different. The writing was excellent and the performances by McAvoy and Fassbender were simply riveting. The whole cast was excellent and Kevin Bacon plays a complex villain so well. This movie seemed to transcend the usual superhero trope and had some real emotion and depth to the characters. Also some great action sequences but that was only a part of the move and not the main entree. Wht made it so compelling was the old combination of great writing, casting and great performances. Well done Marvel.
One person found this helpful
Robert WilesReviewed in the United States on June 30, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
First movie that you need to watch in the X-Men series
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One of my favorite movies of all time you get to see the X-Men in there like early stages especially with Magneto as a early 20s girl famous pool guy see that's the rack as Charles Xavier when he still at Oxford you really going to flush out these characters when they're young and really well done Kevin Bacon's role is excellent the whole cast is fun it's a really good movie all around and I really get you to understand the bad guys like Magneto and Mystique it really get you to understand their point of view. Easley better than X-Men 1 2 or 3
One person found this helpful
J.A.Reviewed in the United States on August 3, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
A Great Film With A Great Blu-Ray
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X-Men: First Class is a great film. After the atrocities that were X-Men: The Last Stand and X-Men Origins: Wolverine, First Class is a breath of fresh air. I've been buying the films in the order they were released, and First Class really turns the franchise around. I don't need to say much more than it's a fun film that explores a lot of great character moments the previous films only hinted at.

The copy I received did come with the Slip Cover (or O-Ring) that Amazon uses for it's listing. I was very pleased with the look of the case. Also, my HD Digital Copy code doesn't expire until April 2019. A nice bonus, and something I wish more films did, is digital bonus features. I redeemed my code for VUDU and it includes all the bonus features digitally. It's a small bonus, but I appreciate the addition. I'm very satisfied with both the film and the actual Blu-Ray, would definitely recommend.
4 people found this helpful
Green_SteveReviewed in the United States on March 19, 2016
5.0 out of 5 stars
X-Men finally done right.
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When I saw X-men: First Class I was elated/relieved that they had finally done the property some justice by not trying to be campy or sell lunchboxes to kids. This was/is the first in a soft relauch at Fox of the the X-men intellectual property (i.p.) to breath life into a series that had grown stale (albeit successful) to a legion of dissatisfied hardcore fans in an attempt to make the original trilogy kid-friendly watered down what true fans were looking for.

As for this movie in its own right it goes a long way towards healing wounds of true fans. However, while X-men: First Class moves in the right direction with hardcore fans it does so without being slavishly tired to the source material. Giving moviegoers and comic book readers a new story that is both fresh yet oddly familiar. In the end what we have is a brilliant story directed by Matthew Vaughn, starring a first class cast (no pun intended), and an unbelievable score.

Great story
A cast that was second to none
An awesome score by Henry Jackman


Overall, this was the X-men movie we were waiting for.
4 people found this helpful
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