Now Reading: ‘Dark Phoenix’ Isn’t a Rip-Off of ‘X Men: The Last Stand’


‘Dark Phoenix’ Isn’t a Rip-Off of ‘X Men: The Last Stand’

October 9, 20185 min read

Since the Dark Phoenix trailer dropped, the film has received backlash for its striking similarities to X Men: The Last Stand. Fans have seen it before: Jean Grey (not the energy-sucking mutant) goes rogue and creates catastrophe all around her. As this was a huge part of Last Stand‘s plot and will definitely be in Dark Phoenix, many fans are wondering the point of releasing the upcoming film.

One fan even made a trailer for Dark Phoenix using footage from The Last Stand to emphasize the similarities between the two:

While there is bound to be some parallels between the films (they are based on the same comic book line, after all), there also some new and exciting differences that fans might have missed in the trailer. 

1.) A new character, played by Jessica Chastain

Jessica Chastain has been cast in the movie for a while now, but what role she is playing still has yet to be announced. In the trailer, she is shown briefly but fails to give a good indication of her identity. Who is Chastain’s character? While still unnamed, it was recently announced that Chastain’s character has never been seen before and was inspired by a mix of different characters. She is an extraterrestrial who seeks to manipulate Jean Grey for her own gain. Why Chastain’s character is doing this and how big of a part she will play remain a mystery. Director Simon Kinberg did say that Chastain’s character comes to Earth after Jean Grey goes to space (which we will cover next).

2.) The rocket – a new cosmic force?

It’s hard to miss the rocket sequence in the trailer, but fans may be curious about how it fits into the plot. According to 21st Century Fox, the X-Men go into space near the beginning of the film for a rescue mission (who they are rescuing is unclear.) In the trailer, we see the rocket engulfed in an orange light. 21st Century Fox claims this “cosmic force”  triggers her transformation into the powerful Phoenix. It also brings Chastain’s character to Earth, who may turn out to be the larger threat. Last Stand, like the other films it its trilogy, all centered around the struggle between humans and mutants. This new film seems to be bringing in new, intergalactic elements never before seen in the X-Men universe. 

3.) Changes in the Beast

What is going on with the Beast? The furry genius, played by Nicholas Hoult, is a crucial member of the X-Men, using his intelligence to  fight off mutant-killing robots and energy-absorbing Nazis. This may change in Dark Phoenix. Hank seems to fall out with Xavier during the film, blaming him for some unspecified tragedy. This may be related to the funeral clip shown in the trailer. Many fans speculate that Mystique, the Beast’s love interest, may be killed in the movie (she is not shown at the funeral.) We also see a crying Beast holding an inanimate (possibly dead) Mystique. We later see a clip of Beast standing with Magneto in a face-off against the X-Men.

A likely explanation for this footage: Mystique dies, causing Beast to join forces with Magneto. Since Beast is almost always portrayed as a “good guy” (as he was in Last Stand), this complete turnaround of his character is something worth seeing.

While Dark Phoenix will definitely induce some deja vu from The Last Stand, this new movie is packed with new storylines and characters. Also, unlike its predecessor, it seems to be more closely based off the “Phoenix” comic saga, hopefully doing this legendary comic justice. 

Photo via GameSpot.

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Maya Shah

Born in raised in Middletown, New Jersey, Maya Shah is a writer, film enthusiast, and superhero at heart. In addition to journalism, Maya has written her first novel, The Demon's Angel and will be speaking at the Collingswood Book Festival this October. In her spare time, Maya loves running, reading, and rewatching Marvel movies.