Twentieth Century Fox has really shown that they are willing to take insane risks with their properties. First it was with Deadpool, then it was with Logan. The first was a very light-hearted and violent film that never went too hard-R. The second was a grisly and very grim film that went insanely hard-R and didn’t shy back from the violence. I really like that. This new film has decided to take another strange turn, into an avenue that I honestly never saw a Marvel film taking before now, and I am so desperately hoping it is financially successful, so other films can learn from this example. Now they are going straight-up horror. I find this fascinating. There’s a lot to unpack here, so let’s get into it.
We begin by seeing shots of a dark establishment. There are lots of gravestones with code numbers that are very reminiscent of the ones the kids had in Logan. We have “We Don’t Need No Education” playing in the background. Is the idea that this place is a school? An odd choice, but I’ll go with it. There is a woman grilling a small child, asking if she has ever noticed strange things happening. Then the question comes up – have you ever heard of mutants?
This leads me into wondering where in the timeline this film takes place. Part of me figures that it takes place in the same universe and timeline as Logan. It fits. After all, how else would you explain the fact that no one seems to know what a mutant is? Society has forgotten about them. They’ve been dead for a generation and now we have new mutants coming along. Lots of cool implications there.
It cuts to the doctor talking to a new kid about the fact that baby rattlesnakes are more dangerous than adults because they can have more deadly bites. Interesting. A metaphor for the fact that children are more dangerous than adults? Neat thought process there. Get to meet a couple more mutants, including a blonde girl. The doctor says that these children are dangerous, which leads to one of the kids hearing noises come from a washing machine. The kid gets closer, until a hand slams onto the door and flames come out. Okay. Lots of questions. Why was that kid in there? Why are flames coming out? This is weird.
Then it gets to the montage of stuff, and this is where it got my attention. The aforementioned doctor is all cut up. Okay. One of the mutant kids has blood on her finger and then faces start meshing through the walls. Interesting. A kid describes this place as not a hospital, but a haunted house. That line is kind of dumb, but at least it informs the idea that this place is painted as a place of healing, even though it’s much more likely that it’s some kind of Weapon X type facility. There’s someone in a weird mask. Horror movie trope #1,000,000.
We see more and more chaos surrounding these mutants. What interests me is the idea that if it’s the kids themselves or something outside them. So maybe this film takes place before any of the mutants from other films are discovered? Like, these are some of the originals and now we’re seeing the chaos they are able to cause because no one knows how to stop it? Lots of interesting questions here.
Here’s the thing – a comic book themed horror film is a fantastic idea. That’s what Ghost Rider should have been. I genuinely believe this idea could work. The thing is that this trailer doesn’t tell us much. Especially if the film wants to go hard-R. Please tell me it does! You know what this film needs – a Red Band trailer. We need to know if it’s going as twisted and dark as its predecessors have. Please tell me does. Please let this be a film that takes all the balls 20th Century Fox has gotten with their darker superhero films and runs with it.
But my worry is that because this film doesn’t have the name recognition that Deadpool or Logan did that people will ignore it. They’re releasing this in April. What a random time. I for one mean to see it. I need to know. Hopefully all of you do too. Let’s not let a potentially interesting idea languish on the vine.