A ‘spectacular trip’, or a ‘tasteless’ co-opting of Auschwitz? What the critics thought of X-Men: Apocalypse

Bryan Singer’s new X-Men movie – his fourth contribution to the franchise – has landed with a thud. The film, in which the X-Men take on Ancient Egyptian mutant called Apocalypse (complete with his four horsemen), has split the critics, drawing  a handful of enthusiastic notices, and many more negative reviews.

Despite its star-power (James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Oscar Isaac), many felt the film was struggling under the weight of too many characters.

Critics were particularly divided over the film’s discussion of the holocaust. The Hollywood Reporter was “appalled”; Inverse found it “shocking and deeply uncomfortable… wildly unnecessary”. But the Guardian defended the scenes set in Auschwitz: “In a movie with less artless and forthright vehemence, and one with greater pretensions to middlebrow good taste, this could hardly have worked, but [Bryan] Singer brings it off here.”

Either way, X-Men: Apocalypse looks certain to cause a stir when it opens on May 18. Until then, here’s what the critics thought:

Tim Robey, The Telegraph

 X-Men: Apocalypse degenerates into Singer’s very own X-Men 3 – formulaic and a bit thick, with large scale digital destruction saving it the hassle of thought, ingenuity or any tightly organised set-pieces past halfway…  Better than Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, but not by an awful lot…  Apocalypse isn’t quite the end of the world for X-Men fans, but it might be the end of the line.”

Rating: 2/5 stars

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