"We see the Wolverine we’ve been crying out for since the first X-men film"

So Wolverine is back, this time as simply The Wolverine, Hugh Jackman (or shound I say Huge Jackman, am I right?) takes his whopping sixth turn as the skulking side burn clad mutant. After the atrocious X-Men Origins: Wolverine it seems that Jackman and Oscar winning director James Mangold (Girl, Interrupted, Walk the Line) want to transform the character into the new brand of superhero, into the man Logan whom we care and fear for.

Taking the story back to Chris Claremont and Frank Miller's Japan-set 1982 saga changes the nature of how we view Wolverine and it helps that it’s a classic and fan favourite graphic novel. We’re slammed into Nagasaki where Logan is in a Japanese prisoner of war camp just because the nuclear bomb is dropped, he saves a guard, Yashida, who witnesses his super fast mutant healing powers into it’s full CGI glory. Cut to the present and Logan is living in the wilderness with only a terrible CGI bear for company. Rather then being left alone in the woods to drink his whiskey and weep about the death of Jean Grey, he is met by Yukio, played excellently by Rila Fukushima.

Yukio informs Logan of his old friends declining health and we’re whisked away to Japan, never to see America again for the rest of the film and after all the heavy patriotic superhero films we’re glad of it. Logan finds that his friend has done pretty darn well after the war and is on his death bed in a glorious mansion surrounded by his distraught granddaughter Tao Okamoto as Mariko Yashida and a mysterious blonde nurse. Yashida informs Logan that the only way he can be saved is if Logan gives Yashida his miraculous healing powers, effectively robbing him of them and leading him to live a normal human life. This is conflicting for Logan but before we know it Yashida has died, the family is in uproar and Yakusa and mutants are flying out of every corner.

The Wolverine isn’t the best superhero film, it has it’s flaws which include slightly underwritten female characters and a need for unnecessary quips to a close up camera. That being said, this film is done well, we see the Wolverine we’ve been crying out for since the first X-men film. Setting the story in Japan and the flashbacks with Jean Grey solidify that we are not watching the superhero we saw before, we are watching the man we glimpsed. Like Thor and Iron Man, we need to superheroes struggle, give up and finally redeem themselves to truly like them. Jackman plays the tortured beast with conviction and after six films we see him grow into a role and fixing a character that was long overdue a great film, and we finally have it.