13 September 2020 (released)
13 September 2020
At one point, it seemed like The New Mutants, a spin-off of the X-Men franchise, was cursed because it kept being delayed.
Finally, more than two years after its original release date, the movie has finally been released in cinemas.
The film begins with Dani (Blu Hunt) running away from a mysterious presence in the middle of a snowstorm and then all of a sudden, she wakes up in a mysterious facility. She is told by Dr Reyes (Alice Braga) that a tornado wiped out her family and she is a new mutant, although her power is unknown. She must stay there with her fellow mutants - Rahne (Maisie Williams), Illyana (Anya Taylor-Joy), Sam (Charlie Heaton), and Roberto (Henry Zaga) - until she can identify and control her power and is ready to move on to Charles Xavier's school.
But weird things begin to occur within the facility, and her fellow new mutants start being haunted by their worst fears.
The movie takes a while to get going because there are new characters to be introduced and relationships and powers to be established. And even when it eventually gets into the swing of things, it never levels up and becomes anything more than an average superhero movie. Not bad, not boring, but just not particularly exciting, even in its CGI-filled climax, which, ultimately, turns out to be quite disappointing.
It was an inspired idea going down the horror route with this film and it makes it stand out from many other superhero outings. However, director Josh Boone could have gone further with the scares because it doesn't really warrant its 15 certificate in the U.K. There are creepy moments as well as instances of tension and dread but it isn't particularly scary. Horror fans will feel let down.
Williams, playing the more likeable member of the cast, puts on a convincing Scottish accent, and although her relationship with Dani is obvious and a bit cheesy, it's a huge step forward for LGBTQ representation in Disney movies. Hunt is sweet enough but quite a bland lead.
Taylor-Joy's character is an annoying brat at first but she becomes more tolerable once you know her story and she has the coolest-looking power, while Heaton basically plays his introverted loner character from Stranger Things in this, but he has a great Kentucky accent.
The New Mutants was intended to be the launchpad for a trilogy but this is unlikely to happen following Disney's acquisition of Fox. It’s a shame because, despite its flaws, the movie delivered an interesting mix of characters and stories and seemed like it was going to go in a promising direction in the next chapter.