Movies: Rapid Review “The New Mutants”

Starring: Maisie Williams, Charlie Heaton, Anya Talylor-Joy, Blu Hunt, Henry Zaga, Alice Braga

The New Mutants is listed as a horror film and directed by Josh Boone. It is a superhero movie that was shot and is paced more like a horror flick than an action film. With its troubled past and excessively long delays in being released, it is easy to dismiss this low-budget slice of comic book entertainment brought to the silver screen. But I wouldn’t be so quick to ignore what it offers. Despite its small cast and extremely limited filming locations, it is a fun little popcorn flick that deserves some attention. From the opening scene and voice over about an old Indian legend, the film builds quickly and doesn’t spend much time going deep into any of its characters; especially the primary antagonist, Cecilia Reyes played by Alice Braga. This isn’t necessarily a negative though. At times I wished it would have dived a bit deeper behind each character and the sinister organization puppeteering Cecilia’s actions, but the speed at which the film moves keeps you interested and eager to see where it is headed.

The “Legend of Two Bears” voice over at the beginning and end of the film, is a well-known parable about the good and evil in all of us. I have heard it many times except with wolves instead of bears. It is a cautionary tale about what energy within yourself you choose to nurture. At its core the main characters learn this lesson during the course of the rather speedy film. Possibly a bit “in your face” the plot and subsequent third act climax are rather predictable, but ultimately satisfying.

There are several rather sweet moments sprinkled throughout the film in an attempt to lure the viewers into liking the characters more; none are as sweet as the ones Rahne played by Maisie Williams is in.  She shines in her performance rather brightly as does Blu Hunt. Some of the dialog with other characters feels superficial and rushed, and at times, it pulls away from the building of suspense. With several intense moments of horror-like edits and developing tension, the film is not well suited for those under the age of 13. The New Mutants tightly plays on the line between PG-13 and R, and I would not recommend it for those easily impacted by violence. I have not read any of the comics that this particular group of mutants is drawn from, but if you are a hard-core comic book fan, and want strict adherence to the source material, I would recommend lowering your expectations. If you are looking for a fun, fast-paced, superhero-ish, borderline horror film, then The New Mutants is certainly going to satisfy. 

8 out of 10 for action, editing, pacing, and entertainment

5 out of 10 for dialog, acting, and underdeveloped plot

Rapid Review’s Overall Score: 6.5

Published by druescott13

Independent Author and Sign Language Interpreter living in Orlando, FL.

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