The bickering around here has gotten out of hand. Name callings of "loyalist" and "fanboy" have been thrown around more than water balloons on a hot summer's day in Hell, and the intelligence of those on either side of the "what did you think of X3" fence has been brought into question. Those who didn't like the movie have begun to play the "victim" of how their opinion isn't respected, while blinding lumping anyone who did enjoy the movie into a category of people who need to "raise their standards", all while saying it's the same crap that's been done to them. Well, hopefully after a journey through the mind of someone who enjoyed X-Men: The Last Stand, some of this bickering can stop. And even if it doesn't hopefully I can provide myself with some personal defense and stop being lumped in some unintelligent group that blindly takes what I'm given just because. To everyone who disliked the movie, we know what you didn't like about it. The complaints have been stated a billion times. And hell, a half a million of those complaints came from ME! So you've given your "lists", you've explained why the movie was ****ty, and why your opinion is righteous. So now it's Nell2ThaIzzay's "Last Stand"... a voice for those who enjoyed the movie. Here's what went -right- with the film, here's why -we- enjoyed it, and here's why we're not just some blind loyalists. You want support to our opinions, well here it is. This movie worked... no it didn't neccesarily do what Bryan Singer was building up. Wanna know why? Bryan Singer left the project. And with him went all of his ideas for the direction of the franchise. The entire creative team from Bryan Singer's films were gone. There was nobody left who knew what Bryan Singer was doing. The closest one was Zak Penn, and he wasn't really part of Singer's team. The writers of Simon Kinberg and Zak Penn were put into a situation where they pretty much had to "guess" what Singer was gonna do. They were left with a story that had to be given some payoff in the Phoenix Saga, and they had to do it in a way that fit with Singer's established universe while not having the slightest clue as to what Singer was going to do with it. And the final product they came up with fit with Singer's set up pretty damned well. "But the mental blocks and alternate persona had to set up in X2..." duh. Nothing in X-Men: The Last Stand was what Bryan Singer had set up, for the reasons I mentioned above. That doesn't mean it didn't work. THESE MIGHT NOT HAVE BEEN THE REASON CERTAIN SEEDS WERE PLANTED IN THE PREVIOUS 2 MOVIES, BUT THE EXPLANATION REMAINS CONSISTANT. Let's take the Phoenix Saga, for instance; X-Men, Jean Grey is relativley weak. Magneto's machine has no effect on mutants. But there's an effect on Jean... why would the machine have an effect on Jean, but nobody else? It'd be a pretty lame copout if it was just a plot device to trigger her next stage of evolution. No, there was something different about Jean Grey. The mental blocks that held her powers in check. Magneto's machine destroyed them. X2, she had a new level of powers, a new level that even she wasn't too familiar with. Why the sudden leap in power from X-Men to X-Men: United? Because her mental blocks were destroyed, and she had full access to her powers, and never having access to them before, she was barely tapping the true potential of her powers. Then came that fateful moment where in order to save the rest of her team, her friends, her -family-, she had to make the ultimate sacrifice; her life. Her "death", and consequental loss of her concious self, allowed for the "alter ego" personality to seep through. There's no reason why her Phoenix alter ego had to be present for her to use her powers. Her alter ego isn't her mutation. It's not a part of her powers. Unleashing her powers doesn't neccesarily unleash her personality. But even then, the "alter ego" route wasn't so totally off track of what was presented in the previous movies; "A month ago you had to concentrate just to levitate a book. Now when you have a nightmare, the entire bedroom shakes." "My nightmares are getting worse..." ^ We've seen in X-Men: The Last Stand what happens when her powers go haywire. Infirmary scene, anyone? It's obvious that if she loses control of her emotions, she can easily lose control of her powers. And we saw an entire room shaking. Similar to what was established in that line in X2. And nightmares, dreams in general, are definatley a product of your emotions and personality. Constant nightmares, getting worse... why can't that be her "alter ego" starting to seep through? Is it what Bryan Singer intended? Probably not. But Bryan left. And took his ideas with him. This entirely new team had to come up with a story built up by Bryan Singer, that fit into his established universe, without any of his ideas to help them along. They had to connect the dots on their own. They took what was established, and made their OWN solution to the unexplained build up from the previous movies. It's all stuff that connects. "But what about Cyclops? He told Xavier he'd take over the school if anything happened, and they killed him off!" Yea, they kinda had to. Like it or not, studio politics do play a role in movies these days. It's not totally artistic. For whatever reason, the studio wanted Cyclops out. So what did they do? They established Cyclops' role as the heir apparent to Xavier. When Xavier tells Storm he wants her to take over; "But, Scott's..." a line to show that Scott is supposed to by Xavier's "heir", supposed to run the school after Xavier has passed. It was 2 words and an incomplete thought that heavily established Scott's importance within the institute. However, studio politics dictated the response: "Scott's a changed man. He took Jean's death so hard"... which albiet isn't the ideal reply we would have liked to have seen from Xavier about our favorite ruby-quartz'd visor'd field leader, it wasn't too far off from the source material. I've seen Cyclops get very emotional over Jean's death in different versions of the X-Men, the movies should be no different. I've seen him leave the team because of it. Not only that, but unknown to everyone else, Jean was still calling out to him. Not only did he take Jean's death hard, but she wouldn't let him get over it. Poor guy. Given the studio politics of the situation, they handled that about as well as they could, by at least establishing that "Well, Storm's gonna get the school, but it IS supposed to be Cyclops". On the other end of the spectrum, you have Magneto who spent all of X-Men predicting a war between mutants and humans, and in X2 spent some significant time actually starting that war. Well, after X2, Magneto is a free man. His Brotherhood defeated from the incident on Liberty Island, it's now time for Magneto to start fresh... he's got Mystique by his side, and he just manipulated Pyro to join his cause. Magneto has his motivation from Stryker's actions against mutantkind, and has taken it upon himself to fight this war on all accounts. Instead of sitting idly by, waiting for the humans to "draw first blood", Magneto takes it to their doorstep, coordinating attacks in "Lisben, Geneva, Montreal", sending Mystique in on covert operations to gather information to help his cause, where she was eventually captured. After learning about the cure, he then gathers mutants to his cause for his biggest attack yet. The entire time, gathering mutants to his cause using his grace, dignity, elegance, and charisma, meanwhile remaining true to his friend Xavier, and keeping the "youngin's" in line. Magneto was at his all-time best in this film. New to Xavier's cause was the, movie-universe wise, return of Hank McCoy, the Beast. Everything that I love about comic book Beast was captured in this film, even down to the details of in-combat quips with Wolverine ("I thought you were a diplomat", "As Tackov said, there comes a time when every man must........ OH YOU GET THE POINT!"), and remarks of awe ("Oh my stars and garters"). I couldn't imagine Beast being done any better than he was done in this film. Not only is Beast's role in the movie one of the best parts of the movie, it's one of the best parts of the entire trilogy. The cure plotline was the best of the 3 movies. It wasn't just "some bad guy makes plan that will endanger the world"... it was the ultimate shade of grey that provoked both sides to take action in one form or another. And in response to a remark I saw awhile back... Xavier was there every step of the way (in response to Magneto's remark to Xavier in X-Men about intending to fight the war, and Xavier being there every step of the way)... it doesn't have to be in a literal, physical sense. Xavier's ideaology, Xavier's dream was there every step of the way. Xavier's children, the X-Men, fought in Xavier's name, for his dream, to stop Magneto from accomplishing his goals. And in that way, the way that you have to dig down a little bit for because it doesn't punch you in the face with brass knuckles, Xavier was there every step of the way. No, this film might not have been what Bryan Singer set out to do. But what Bryan Singer set out to do left with Bryan Singer when he went to do Superman Returns. He didn't leave an outline behind for the next crew to work with. He took everything. The new team had to come in with nothing, and make something that fit the story of 2 movies already, without knowing what direction was truly intended. And what they did fits smoothly with what came before it. Nothing contradicts. The open plot arcs are resolved. Maybe not as Bryan Singer intended, and maybe not even ideally for us as fans, but they ended, and they ended in a way that remained consistant with what was established by 2 movies prior. That's why X-Men: The Last Stand worked for me, and many others. And as you can see, I haven't even gotten to the "action and explosions for the sake of action and explosions" yet... I've been talking about what actually happened in this movie, the plot, the character, the depth. Please don't lecture me on how I need to raise my standards, and how I'll blindly accept anything, because I enjoyed this movie and you didn't. This is just the tip of the iceberg of what I found to be enjoyable about this movie... a brief runthrough. Those of us that enjoyed the movie do have legitamate reasons for liking it, and they equal, if not outnumber, the complaints others may have about the movie.