Despite having low expectations initially due to the last few flops in the franchise, ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past’ turned out to be one of my favorite films of 2014. The epic Marvel mutant movie saw Bryan Singer return to the director’s chair and he brought some of his original cast from 2000 with him. However, one returning cast member ended up getting cut out of the theatrical release in order to streamline the story. Because Singer chose to cut the one storyline that involved Anna Paquin, the actress ended up getting cut out of the film altogether (except for a quick shot of her reflection in a mirror). However, the filmmaker revealed that he and 20th Century Fox would release the Rogue Cut, a new version of the movie that goes beyond an expanded edition because it’s actually an entirely new cut of the film that inserts Rogue back into the mix.
Just like the theatrical version, this movie still acts as a sequel to both ‘X-Men: First Class’ and ‘X-Men: The Last Stand’ that spans decades as the younger versions of the X-Men in the 70s join forces with their 2023 counterparts to save the world from a grim, terrifying dystopian future dominated by mutant and human killing machines called Sentinels. The difference comes about half way through when Ellen Page’s Kitty Pryde suffers an injury while projecting the consciousness of Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine into his younger self. That’s when Iceman teams up with the older Magneto and Professor X to rescue Rogue from the X-Mansion to take Kitty’s powers and continue the mission.
For True Believers that haven’t gotten their copy of ‘Days of Future Past,’ this is a no-brainer. The Rogue Cut Blu-Ray comes with both versions of the film plus over 90 minutes of previously unseen extras. The nine-part making of documentary ‘Mutant vs. Machine’ is interesting enough for even the fans that already own the film to pick this one up when it goes on sale. On top of celebrating the past fifteen years of X-Men on the big screen, the doc includes some really fascinating looks at the practical effects and the vast collection of costumes utilized on this production. There’s even some really cool talk about ‘X-Men: Apocalypse’ from Singer and Simon Kinberg in there as well.
But the main event of the Rogue Cut is obviously the new version of the movie. Once the credits rolled, I was reminded of the first time I saw the original cut because I had very few things to criticize about the movie. The Quicksilver scene was still fantastic (even though I was still bothered by Evan Peter’s utterly ridiculous hair), the action sequences in the future were still as badass as ever, and the cameos at the end made me smile from ear to ear.
Then I started to think about the new addition to the film and I just thought they were great. In fact, they really fleshed out the futuristic portion of the story and gave it more layers. In addition to giving us an awesome side story for Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart’s iconic characters, there was suddenly a reason for the Sentinels to find the X-Men in the future during the climax. There was also some great juxtaposition of McKellan’s Magneto and Michael Fassbender’s Magneto since we got to see both sides of the character doing what he thought was right for the survival of mutantkind. Even though it was actually just a bunch of little things being reinserted back into the movie, those little things really beefed up the already well-crafted story.
The one thing that I could complain about is that there are no deleted scenes included on this two-disc release. I know that a lot the stuff that ended up on the cutting room floor made it back into the Rogue Cut, but there must have been some stuff that remained there even after the new version was assembled. One of my favorite things about home releases of movies are the deleted scenes, so to not have any here was a bit of a let down. The gag reel was also left off of this release, but now I’m just getting nitpicky.
As I said in my first review of this movie, I have little to no complaints about ‘X-Men: Days of Future Past – Rogue Cut’ as a movie critic or a comic book fan. Having such talented individuals like Bryan Singer, Matthew Vaughn, and all the rest that are so passionate about the material are really making up for the bad tastes left by ‘X-Men: The Last Stand’ and ‘X-Men Origins: Wolverine’. This release shows that it’s possible to rework a director’s cut of a movie without going full on George Lucas on it, so even if you own the film already, this is worth picking up. At the very least, get yourself a digital copy and watch the new version of it. Though the differences may not be widely evident at first, I think that you’ll catch on to why this is a better way to tell the story by the end.