"Romeo & Juliet Return?": The Official Jean Grey/Cyclops Debate

Discussion in 'X-Men: Days of Future Past' started by Lightning Strykez!, Feb 17, 2013.

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  1. Lightning Strykez!

    Lightning Strykez! Former Mod On Pension Pay

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    The X2 line would've been sooo much better if Xavier had said "I'd have Storm braid your hair." Cuz, you know, black people...and African hair-braiding techniques. :p

    [blackout]And before anyone cries "Racist!" despite the fact that my father was white, blue-eyed and blonde haired, his X-genes didn't cancel out my mother's so I know what I'm talking about![/blackout]:funny:
     
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  2. SterlingDee

    SterlingDee Well-Known Member

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    Well, the script is a mess in terms of setting up a strong protagonist and major characters given the main storylines. Wolverine is ostensibly the protagonist in the film, but he's not given a strong stake in the main storyline (The Cure). His main involvement/stake is the Phoenix storyline, but it is relegated to the secondary storyline. Jean/Phoenix is established as a major character in act 1 but disappears somewhere in act 2 only to reappear for the climax of her story. So, the film has a structure where the male (Wolverine) and female (Jean) leads do not have a personal stake in the main storyline of the film (i.e. the Cure): this is a disastrous choice from a storytelling perspective! For this reason alone, Phoenix should have been the A storyline and The Cure the B storyline.

    Then there's Storm...scenes like "You of All People Know How Quickly The Weather Can Change" (gag) should have been cut from the film. Storm is a useless character in the film and there is no real purpose to having any Storm-centric scenes. Time should be spent building the main characters of the film (Wolverine, Jean, Prof X, Magneto) or advancing the plots (The Cure or Phoenix) not spent developing a supporting character who has no substantive involvement in the major plots of the film. If they wanted to make Storm a significant character, they should have given her an actual role, not meaningless scenes and lines in the script.
     
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  3. Lightning Strykez!

    Lightning Strykez! Former Mod On Pension Pay

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    How do you figure Storm didn't have a meaningful role? Xavier AND Scott have been murdered off by the only other senior staff member (Jean). Collectively, they ran a school for mutant children. Storm rose to the occasion and took command--and had to do so. Hence all of the build-up in the "Storm-centric" dialogue. I don't understand where you're coming from SterlingDee... :dry:
     
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  4. SterlingDee

    SterlingDee Well-Known Member

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    Storm taking command is not a major plot point. It could have been eliminated from the script entirely and it would not affect the Cure or Phoenix storylines.

    Even with this plot point in the film, there is no reason, from a story perspective, that Storm needs to be developed in order to take command of the school. Storm could be an entirely silent character in the film, standing in the background, and she could still take command of the school with a simple line of dialogue:

    Beast- "Storm has taken over the school"

    Yes, that is extreme but I'm trying to illustrate that Storm's actions are not important from a story perspective. Her little weather scene, Eulogy, battles with Callisto, and minor interactions with other characters can all be eliminated from the screenplay without much (or any) effect. That is the mark of a minor, unimportant character and evidence that the screenplay was weak in devoting screentime to her when it could be better used developing the major characters in the story.
     
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  5. Mad Ones

    Mad Ones Bebe le Strange

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    I agree. If you took away Storm's character very little of the plot would change. What importance she did muster in the script could have been given to other characters without little changing. It's a shame.
     
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  6. psylockolussus

    psylockolussus Well-Known Mutant

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    There would be definitely be love triangle especially if they resurrected Jean. Just imagine Wolverine's reaction about it. She died on his arms, so he wouldn't just act cordial and just say hello and give Jean a small smile.
     
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  7. Great Mind(s)

    Great Mind(s) Broken

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    cool PM me
     
    #207
  8. Lightning Strykez!

    Lightning Strykez! Former Mod On Pension Pay

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    What??? :doh:

    I seriously couldn't disagree more but...whatever. *shrugs*
     
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  9. The Guard

    The Guard Well-Known Member

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    Well, yeah. That’s how writing works. The alternative is for him not to be further developed as a character.

    Wolverine kind of is given a strong stake in the main (Cure) storyline, though. He ends up essentially leading the defense of the cure facility.

    Further, Wolverine doesn’t need to be directly tied to the Cure storyline and all its relevant themes, because this is an ensemble film, and the story does not suffer from him not being strongly connected to the concept, as there are multiple protagonists, and several other characters with a more direct and relevant connection to the Cure storyline. Rogue. Angel. Magneto. Mystique. Pyro. Beast. Leech, and Phoenix. Wolverine also interacts with Rogue regarding her desire to take the cure and is present for discussion of it, so its not like he’s not involved in the concept at all.

    Jean doesn’t disappear any more than any other character does at one point or another. She evolves into Phoenix, but she has an impact on the story the entire way through.

    There’s no reason why either storyline need have been “switched”. They’re both very important to the film and the events of its story.

    And Jean absolutely does have a stake in the Cure storyline. She’s Magneto’s secret weapon when the attack on the cure facility fails. And half of the whole point behind Phoenix is that she is powerful and does not want to be “cured” or diminished. That’s what causes her to lash out throughout the film, until finally she gets completely out of control at the Cure facility. Her character and story are directly tied into the themes and concept of the Cure storyline.

    Time is spent building the main characters of the film.

    Time is also spent building supporting characters, because it’s, again, an ensemble film.

    They did give her an actual role. Her scenes aren’t meaningless. There's a specific meaning to every scene she's involved in, that meaning just isn't limited to The Cure or Phoenix. Which is good, because there's been a storyline that isn't The Cure and Phoenix going on over three films, and that's the storyline of Xavier and his students, of which all the X-Men/student characters in the films are a part of.

    Yes, it could have been removed from the script and not have affected the Cure or Phoenix storylines. That’s because Storm taking command isn’t part of the cure and Phoenix storylines. It’s part of a subplot. The scenes with Storm are part of a subplot regarding Xavier’s students taking over from Xavier, and carrying on his mission, which is a separate storyline from the Cure and Phoenix.

    No, not from a story perspective related to those two storylines, but from a character perspective and a larger franchise story perspective, there is a need for her to be developed to that point, if her taking over the school is going to feel remotely less contrived. Writing involves story AND character work. You can’t ignore one just because the other is important.
     
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  10. SterlingDee

    SterlingDee Well-Known Member

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    Fair enough! I would definitely be interested in hearing why you disagree (not saying my mind couldn't be changed). I'm coming from a screenwriting perspective, but perhaps you have a different perspective or idea I haven't thought of.
     
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  11. X-Maniac

    X-Maniac High Evolutionary

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    But these are ensemble movies. The X-MEN. And thus the supporting characters should be present and have interaction/conversation about the major plots. Otherwise, why not just make a Wolverine & The Phoenix movie?

    Events in the film - the emergence of Jean/Phoenix and then her departure (from the team/mansion) - are going to have an impact on the supporting characters. Even without the exit/death of Cyclops and the death of Xavier, it would have necessitated the only other senior person in the mansion (Storm) to be given some time to be shown reacting and taking action. As someone who worked with - and lived alongside - Jean, it's natural to show Storm having a presence in the story. Whatever dramatic actions were carried out by Phoenix - and they would be dramatic in any script written that featured Phoenix - would mean Storm's point of view and responsibilties would be part of it.

    You seem to be advocating the absence of Storm altogether. How would that have taken place, given that she was part of the previous films (not to mention a popular comic book character). There's no logical way that Storm could be written out of the third film entirely.

    Now, as for the character moments you didn't like in X3, we had similar scenes in X2 - such as Iceman's coming out scene with his parents - that serve no purpose to the main plots (which, again, relate to Wolverine and Jean). And the scene with Jean, Storm and Nightcrawler in the church has a lot of extraneous material that's not significant to the plot. But it's there because it adds characterisation and backstory.

    The conversation between Storm and Nightcrawler on the jet is another example of a character moment that doesn't serve the plot, but there was nothing wrong with it. Similarly, the scene where Mystique goes into Wolverine's tent in disguise, and where Mystique and Nightcrawler have a conversation, don't contribute anything to the plot. But those moments matter - and they matter more for the supporting characters.

    In fact, the Storm/Nightcrawler conversation, in which she reveals they are sheltering at a school "where we can be safe... from everyone else" is followed up on in X3 when Storm asks Xavier why they are still hiding at the mansion at a time when they have a more understanding president and a Dept of Mutant Affairs run by Beast. So the X3 scene isn't some random addition.

    I would say also that Jean/Famke had a good amount of characterisation and screentime in X3, except for when she was stood around at Alcatraz. And we saw that Wolverine spent the entire movie preoccupied with Jean.

    The elevation of the Cure to the main plot has been claimed to be a studio decision, so the writers should have linked it to the Phoenix plot by having the cure development fast-tracked as a result of the threat/destruction caused by Phoenix. Even then, it's hard to see what Wolverine's standpoint would be because he never seems to have any view on wider issues like the Cure. He wouldn't want it used on Jean, though; or maybe he would, if it meant she would be back to normal.

    In the end, I certainly don't think Storm dominated the movie. Some of her scenes could have been better written/executed but I don't think she took screentime from anyone and it certainly wasn't down to Storm that Jean stood around on Alcatraz. They should have had the two of them take to the skies in an elemental battle of the goddesses, in which Storm eventually used hurricane winds to blast Phoenix miles out of the way for a time before Phoenix returned for the Alcatraz destruction scenes we did see.

    If what you are saying amounts to a dislike of Storm, that's the fault of the films for not giving us a better Storm. If what you are saying amounts to a criticism of Storm's portrayal, the most of us agree.
     
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  12. X-Maniac

    X-Maniac High Evolutionary

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    But why would you take away Storm's character?

    This is the X-Men. They're a team. It's an ensemble movie franchise.

    I'm glad she did get the development she did get, even if some of it was not perfect.

    We could remove virtually everyone apart from Wolverine and Jean and Magneto and the films could proceed. But what's the goddam point? There are other people in the X-Men who deserve to have a stake in the films and the stories.
     
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  13. Double B

    Double B Well-Known Member

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    Exactly.

    It's a bad script. A bad script made worse by sub-par directing and worse editing. The dialogue is shockingly poor though. That annoys me immensely. Like it's full of soundbites designed for the trailers, as you mention.

    It contains badly disguised remnants of earlier drafts too. You can almost pinoint where Wolverine and Storm were supposed to get it on.
     
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  14. The Guard

    The Guard Well-Known Member

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    The dialogue's not remotely that bad, and certainly not "shockingly poor". There are a few more quips, but it's not like the film is loaded with heightened comic book talk. Most of it is quite appropriate for the scenarios the X-Men and the Brotherhood find themselves involved in. Much like the first two films. A decent amount of realism with a dash of comic book intrigue.
     
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  15. psylockolussus

    psylockolussus Well-Known Mutant

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    Plus if they take away Storm in the movie. Who would take control over the school after Professor X died? Who would look after the students when Wolverine is trying to follow Jean Grey when Jean already went with Magneto. Besides Jean/Cyke/Prof X (who all died in X3), Storm is the longest mainstay at the Xavier Institute and she's also a teacher so for me, it just made sense that she became the headmistress of the Xavier Institute at the end of X3.

    Beast only returned because of the cure thing and at the end of the movie, he went back to DC to work with United Nations. Wolverine is always going to different places for hpersonal reasons and I don't think he could run a school. It would be odd to see Wolverine and Beast leading the X-Men in X3.
     
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  16. SterlingDee

    SterlingDee Well-Known Member

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    Please read what we said. I was not arguing that Storm should have been eliminated from the film - I gave that as an extreme example to illustrate that she is not a major character in X3.

    Storm taking over the school is a perfect character moment that I feel WAS appropriate for Storm. It naturally flowed out of events in the film and did not take that much screentime. BUT someone raised "Taking Over the School" as evidence that Storm was an important character in the story and that additional scenes should be Storm-centric to characterize her just because this plot point involved her. I disagreed with that and explained why Storm taking over the school is not actually evidence of anything.

    It made sense that someone had to take over the school and even if that minor detail could be omitted with the movie still making sense, it offers a nice explanation of what happened after Prof X dies.
     
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  17. DarknessOfDeath

    DarknessOfDeath Rebel Scoundrel

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    Hmmm this thread is turning more into a Storm thread. Isn't there one for that? *scratches his head*
     
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  18. Duran Man

    Duran Man The Seventh Stranger

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    Cyclops must return!
     
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  19. DarknessOfDeath

    DarknessOfDeath Rebel Scoundrel

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    So I showed my parents my photoshop manipulations and they were impressed - even showed them the music video I made too. The song I used is called Purify by Lacuna Coil and every time I listen to it (This was before I went ahead and made the video), Jean Grey comes to mind...but its not just Jean, it's Famke also.
     
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  20. SterlingDee

    SterlingDee Well-Known Member

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    Unfortunately, they are not written as ensemble movies. They are still written as traditional, sole-protagonist (Wolverine) stories. It's actually very difficult to write and make an effective (and real) ensemble movie. I think Joss Whedon succeeded with Avengers because he was used to juggling an ensemble on Buffy, Angel, and Firefly.

    Again, I am not arguing that supporting characters should not be in the movie! But scenes that do not contribute to moving the plot forward, characterization of the main characters, or theme of the film should not be in it imo. Storm delivering exposition or Storm talking to major characters & helping their characterization are great (and if her character is developed in the process, all the better!). Scenes that exist just because the Studio and/or Halle think Storm needs more screentime and characterization are not so great because they create a weaker story structure.
     
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  21. SterlingDee

    SterlingDee Well-Known Member

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    it's my fault! any time I even mention my opinion regarding Storm people pile on me :S Someone asked me a question and my reply involved Storm which is what caused this mess of responses haha

    Also, I want to add, I think I've been on and off these boards for about 10 yrs (if I remember correctly, since X2's release - is that possible?) so I've probably been arguing with all of you for longer than you realize :D Lost my old account somehow.

    DarknessofDeath - I definitely remember you from these forums when X3 was released because you were a big Jean/Famke supporter back then too.
     
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    Last edited: Feb 23, 2013
  22. DarknessOfDeath

    DarknessOfDeath Rebel Scoundrel

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    Its okay...I forgive you. :woot:
     
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  23. Lightning Strykez!

    Lightning Strykez! Former Mod On Pension Pay

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    Storm manipulates the weather. And Hype thread content. :argh:

    Nah, I'm going to sit this one out and let The Guard, X-Maniac, Psy and Double B address it. :funny:

    I do think you make some great points, although I don't agree with them. Ya'll carry on. :jedi

    *grabs popcorn*
     
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  24. DarknessOfDeath

    DarknessOfDeath Rebel Scoundrel

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    *Shrieks* :( Don't get mad at me :( :o
     
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  25. Mad Ones

    Mad Ones Bebe le Strange

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    I never said I wanted to get rid of Storm; I like Storm. I just said that the Storm we got was inconsequential. She was a case of the script telling us, but not showing us character development. Sure, you could say her arc consisted of her taking on the leader role after the death of Cyclops and Xavier. But their wasn't a single instance of her leading. That was Wolverine's arc. She said they'd keep the school open, but that was a single sentence in the movie. It felt like any character could have said "and it still is" to Angel and the school would have stayed open. It doesn't help that after three movies I don't know Storm's personality.

    But anyway, seeing a young Scott and Jean would be a cool nod to the All New X-men comic that's going on now. But I'd still prefer the original actors.
     
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