Oh, the film is well-made. Gavin Hood, the director, made the great film "Tsotsi" (2005) and the damned good film "Rendition" (2007) before signing on here. Fat chance "Wolverine" fans will seek out those two. Why does a gifted director make a film none of his earlier admirers would much want to see? That's how you get to be a success in Hollywood. When you make a big box-office hit for mostly fanboys, you've hit the big time. Look at Justin Lin with "Fast & Furious."
Such films are assemblies of events. There is little dialogue, except for the snarling of threats, vows and laments, and the recitation of essential plot points. Nothing here about human nature. No personalities beyond those hauled in via typecasting. No lessons to learn. No joy to be experienced. Just mayhem, noise and pretty pictures. I have been powerfully impressed by film versions of Batman, Spider-Man, Superman, Iron Man and the Iron Giant. I wouldn't even walk across the street to meet Wolverine.
But wait! -- you say. Doesn't "X-Men Origins" at least provide a learning experience for Logan about the origins of Wolverine? Hollow laugh. Because we know that the modern Wolverine has a form of amnesia, it cannot be a spoiler for me to reveal that at the end of "X-Men Origins: Wolverine," he forgets everything that has happened in the film. Lucky man.
Beyond the immaculate writing, he brings up something that is so common, which is promising directors who seem to both sell out and lose their talent in the process.
Directors take note, Pineapple Express is how you "sell out."