"X-Men: Apocalypse" isn't the end of the franchise, but it needs a new beginning.
While the latest "X-Men" movie is well made and has plenty of good qualities, it hardly moves the franchise forward in a meaningful way. Too much of the story covers very familiar territory, from the backstories of Magneto and Wolverine to the quirky shticks of Quicksilver and Nightcrawler. Professor X's school, Rose Byrne's CIA agent, baddie Colonel Stryker - they're all back and it all feels very "been there, done that." Perhaps most confounding is the fact that it takes place 21 years after "X-Men: First Class", yet nobody seems to have aged one lick in all those years.
What is new doesn't seem particularly bold or better either. The talented Oscar Isaac plays the villain Apocalypse but is buried under so much makeup he has trouble registering. Jennifer Lawrence's part as Mystique has been rewritten to reflect more of her Katniss Everdeen heroics. And even the destruction left in the X-Men's wake here echoes all the ruined cities found in the recent Avengers and Superman movies. 16 years into this film franchise, the X-Men truly need to evolve into something fresher and more exciting.