This, the original X-Men, is what kick-started the craze for superhero movies in the first few years of the new Millennium

'X-Men - witness the evolution of spectacular action and excitement in this dazzling superhero flick unlike anything you've ever seen before' - well, at least that's what the blurb says

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Director: Aamir Khan,Bryan Singer
Cast: Halle Berry, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Patrick Stewart, Rebecca Romijn-Stamos
Duration: 104 minutes

After the Oscar-winning success of The Usual Suspects, director Bryan Singer decides to assemble another collection of misfits for this big-budget adaptation of the popular Marvel comic books.

In the not too distant future, the world is divided between mankind and a new breed of genetically mutated being whose extraordinary powers make them either man's best friend or his most terrifying adversary.

Charles Xavier, aka Professor X (Patrick Stewart), is keen to integrate mutants into mainstream society. But his plans are under threat, not only from an ambitious right-wing senator (Bruce Davison), but also from Magneto (Ian McKellen), an evil mastermind able to control all magnetic substances.

"Trust a few. Fear the rest," scream the posters for Singer's action-packed, tongue-in-cheek fusion of Superman and The Magnificent Seven.

The "few" include glowering lycanthrope Wolverine (Hugh Jackman), weather-manipulating Storm (Halle Berry) and troubled adolescent Rogue (Anna Paquin). The "rest" comprise blue-skinned chameleon Mystique (Rebecca Romijn-Stamos), hairy oaf Sabretooth (Tyler Mane) and long-tongued slimeball Toad (Ray Park).

With such an eclectic cast of characters, it's not surprising X-Men takes a while to get going. Indeed, it's not until the final third that Singer wraps up the exposition and delivers the effects-laden thrill ride we've been waiting for.

Some protagonists fare better than others. Australian hunk Jackman is memorably moody as the steel-clawed Wolfman, while supermodel Romijn-Stamos is sensational as the sexy shape-shifter.

Berry, alas, is blandness personified, while Famke Janssen is wasted in the perfunctory role of telepathic doctor Jean Grey.

Fans of the original comic strip may fume at the liberties taken with the protagonists, while the showdown at the Statue of Liberty leaves too many plot points unresolved. But with a plethora of recently released blockbusters which have failed to thrill, here at last is one picture that does X-actly what it says on the tin.

DVD Special Features:
6 Deleted Scenes
Bryan Singer/ Charlie Rose Interview ClipsClick here to buy X-Men, one of hottest comic-book movie releases of recent times, on DVD
3 Theatrical Trailers
3 TV Spots
The Mutant Watch Featurette
X-Men Featurette
Hugh Jackman Screen Test
Still Galleries
Easter Eggs
Moving Menus
Plus Trailer for Titan A.E
Subtitles in English for the Hard of Hearing, Czech, Danish, Finnish, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Norwegian, Polish, IB Portugese, Swedish.

Click here to buy X-Men, one of hottest comic-book movie releases of recent times, on DVD

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