AntMan

It’s review time again. Yay!

I have watched quite a few new movies of late, but not all of them are worth reviewing, or have a message I think I could dig into. I just watched this film “The Art of Getting By,” Mainly because it had the star of The Good Doctor in it, but it wasn’t very clear or well made.

Anyway, I make no secret of my dislike for the Avengers (I being it up every time I review a superhero film,) so in case you are new to this blog, I am not a Marvel fanatic.

But that’s the reason I actually liked Antman.

Maybe I have thing for superheroes based off bugs. Spiderman, the older version of Black Widow (not the modern one, sorry;) and even the ones based off mammals were some of my favorites.

Antman was acknowledged by the general public to be different form the other Marvel material to come out in the past few years. It’s most like Deadpool and Guardians of the Galaxy. But it’s like Thor in that it works as a stand alone movie.

I’ll sum up the story if you chose not to go see it.

Antman is about Scott Lang, an ex-convict who’s a master thief. Somehow he catches the attention of an old scientist named Hank Pym. (Comic fans know who that is.) Hank has a problem. And old friend and mentee of his has finally cracked part of his code for the Pym particle. Which gives someone the ability to change their size and density. this particle can actually be used in pretty genius ways to wreak havoc, so there is cause for alarm.

Scott is just the unlikely hero Hank is looking for to send in instead of his daughter, whom he doesn’t want to put in danger.

So Scott trains with ants; and Hope, Hank’s daughter; and with the special suit Hank made for the particle.

The particle can also mess with someone’s mind if the don’t have proper protection, which is why the bad guy in this film is so bonkers. (Though he seems pretty sane compared to the other Avenger’s foes.)

So if you like superhero flicks; and micro battles; and weird and vague science; this is the film for you.

All joking aside, even with its obvious flaws in believability, this is a charming movie. It’s funny, and Scott’s development into a hero isn’t hard to buy.

He’s never really a bad guy to begin with, though he is a thief, he wants to go straight. He falls off the wagon, so to speak with a little help from his loser friends. But in the end he decides to take toe more noble course, and her even redeems his buddies into being good guys.

I won’t say his friends were the best comic relief ever, but they got a chuckle or two out of me. And the flashbacks were certainly unique.

Scott’s motivation through the whole thing is to be able to spend time with his daughter. Sort of similar to Drax’es motivation in Guardians of the Galaxy. He does some dumb stuff in order to make that happen faster, but in the end he sacrifices even the possibility in order to save her life and her stepdad’s.

I also had to give the movie points for showing her stepdad to be a good man, who could change his mind, and be noble. Instead of the typical jerk-face stepdads tend to be to our protagonist real dads.

I don’t know if this movie is reaching for a deeper meaning. It doesn’t really have to. No one expected it to be the the big thought provoking film of the franchise. But it has plenty of good old family messages. Like reconciliation, forgiveness, being able to say you are sorry, and giving up things for your family or friends.

It also even works in how the most likely person isn’t always the best one to do something. And sometimes the difference is really in what’s motivating them.

The mentee, whose name escapes me, might have been more likely to become Hank’s successor, but he got too caught up in the power of it and not the principle. Whereas Scott is more freaked by the power, but willing to do it for the principle of making the world safer for his daughter as well as Hank’s.

Another really cool thing was how Scott just naturally became the means for helping Hank and Hope to make peace. He didn’t really try to be that person, he just helped both of them to realize the truth about themselves and each other. Then he made tea. And a guy who can do that doesn’t come along all that often.

Ha ha ha.

Yeah, I know my humor really isn’t helped by me typing out a laugh, but oh well.

It was nice that all the relational healing in this film didn’t feel super rushed, and the people sharing their past didn’t leave the bad taste in my mouth that Bruce Banner, and Natasha’s true confessions did in Age of Ultron.

For the record, I do realize that Natasha’s remarks didn’t mean exactly what they sounded like, but still, ugh.

I also just realized that calling her Natasha is super confusing since that’s my name.

Yikes.

Anyway, so to sum it all up. Antman is a good family movie. IT’s not the most intense, but it is interesting, moving, and one you would be able to rewatch over and over without feeling exhausted. OR super confused because of some god or villain’s antics.

Seriously, what is happening with Loki? Doesn’t anyone in Marvel get that a character endlessly pulling the same crud isn’t development!

I think what makes this movie work is that it does not take itself too seriously, so we can all take it just seriously enough to get the message. But not be rabid fans or anti-fans over it.

And that’s so much better for everyone.

So, until next time–Natasha.

 

 

 

 

 

Wins vs Sins–2

So continuing from part one…

You all know the last thing I would be telling anyone to do is not question their entertainment. So, when I mentioned being receptive, that’s not what I mean.

Let’s look at the hard facts.

The love of money is the root of all evil…in the movie industry. Every time you see a bad movie, just remember, they made it to make money.

I really hope there are some screenwriters left who are in it for the good of mankind. But I wonder if there are any studios left of that sort.

Even assuming there are, it can’t be denied most of them just want to compete with blockbuster successes, and movies are only grossing more and more millions or even billions of dollars as time and inflation take effect.

That being said, it’s not a stretch to think that a lot of bad messages in entertainment are being shoved down our throats because they sell. Because dumb or immoral people will care a lot less about content. Making it easier to make movies and shows that are successes for no apparent reason, therefore making more money. So the cycle goes.

It’s not really paranoid to think this, it’s getting all too blatant.

And often the whole diversity and culture representation thing is thrown in just to get cheap points from certain demographics. (And I don’t mean the ethnicity themselves, but movie watcher demographics.)

Like Disney is criticized for having predominantly white protagonists.

The people who make those criticisms are ignoring the fact that Disney started off as a vehicle for retelling and bringing to life all the old fairy tales and stories people already loved. Which were, like it or not, mostly from European cultures. Because that’s what America started as, a land with European settlers. Complain all you like about the poor Native American representation in Peter Pan. But it is based off a book that literally has Indians in it just because kids liked imagining them. It’s not supposed to be accurate. (Also Walt Disney started making films at a time when certain ethnicity weren’t in movie entertainment all that much, so it’s not like he had much talent of that sort to choose from.)

This is one example of nitpicking that is harmful. What child really cares all that much about their culture being accurately represented?

I mean, let’s explore that: I am of mostly European descent. Should I get mad that my people are represented as singing with birds, living in the woods with no apparent contact with the outside world, and falling for the tricks of wicked witches every single time? (Come to think of it, two out of three of those sounds a lot like homeschooling.)

It’s not like old Disney films really make Europeans look smart, or even brave. A lot of them make us look silly for comic relief.

It would be like taking the court scene in Alice in Wonderland as meant to seriously represent the Law in the real world. No one would do that.

Or the tea party as meant to be actual tea etiquette.

Where’s the outrage here?

Another good reason black or Hispanic characters don’t appear in these movies is because they do not appear in the stories. The reason is, these stories, like Peter Pan or Alice’s, were written by Englishmen for English children. Children who would relate to English culture.

It’s not the story’s fault that its been brought to America with its melting pot of ethnicity.

And as far as more recent films go, the same rule applies to Tangled (German) and Frozen (Danish/Norwegian.) To realistically put black characters in there would be to make them servants. Who wants that message?

Okay, okay, so I’m over-defending Disney. But I could say the same about other franchises too. The poor writers who want to stick to the comic book, or historical, accuracy have a hard time because history is what it is; and comics were, again, written to promote American ideals.

(It would be a whole other discussion to wonder if that’s why people are coming down on them so much.)

To sum all that up, including a black or Latino character is not a virtue and omitting them is not a sin, unless it is ignoring a historical reality.

Before I end this, let’s talk about plots.

Even if you make it through the larbrithn of political correctness and good editing, people will be brutal to your plot.

There are three types of people where plot is concerned.

  1. Those who miss the point of it entirely.
  2.  Those who hate the point completely.
  3.  Those who try to make the point fit whatever their worldview is and ignore the goal of the story.

Most of us are one of these three at any given time. Even I fall into the third category a lot.

Missing the point can just be a fluke, people can just not comprehend the artistic style.

Often though it’s because they weren’t looking for a point at all. And I question if some popular franchise are even trying that hard to make one anymore.

But the second category is probably the most rare, but it’s also important.

When folks hate what you are doing, you are either right, or you are very wrong. There’s not really a middle ground.

The trouble is, when we are picking apart a plot because it wasn’t well paced, or it wasn’t progressive enough, or it was too cliche, we are missing the real point of storytelling.

Which is to show us stuff we can’t normally see.

Yes, an old tale retold is monotonous after awhile. But it is still important.

There are only so many good messages out there. That’s why in the effort to be new and different, books and movies have gone off into the dark, gritty, and uncertain territory.

Because picking a moral right or a moral wrong leaves you with only a few options.

The purpose of new stories is to reiterate the truth in a different way that will make sense to different people.

Truth however, doesn’t change.

Lies change, that is, they morph over time to disguise themselves so that we will keep being taken in.

Truth doesn’t need to do that. It stands on its own.

That’s why a movie like Frozen will break the glass ceiling, even though it falls into a lot of what we would call cliches. It has truth.

And it’s why a movie like Age of Ultron will never be that kind of success, though it had good actors, amazing special effects, and a new-ish plot. There’s no truth in it.

As much as people will argue now that truth is irrelevant to movies; the statistics will speak for themselves. The human mind is attracted to truth, to absolutes, to real meaning.

That’s all for now, until next time–Natasha.

Wins vs Sins–1

This may be an old subject with some of you, but I think it’s one of those that has to be revisited again and again.

And that is the subject of positivism vs negativity.

Since studies have shown that the former is clearly better for health and happiness than the latter, most of us have no excuse to be negative. But you’ve probably noticed that that hasn’t stopped the vast majority of people from being negative.

The problem is that it is and always has been a habit to be negative. I know people who will admit that they shouldn’t be that way, but will not put in the effort to actually change their attitude.

I started thinking about this last night, when I was watching a YouTube video (way later than I should have been, but sometimes it happens.) This video was criticizing this other YouTube channel that those of you who are big movie watchers have probably heard of. Cinema Sins.

I happen to have watched a few of their videos myself (what person hasn’t who looks up internet reviews?) I didn’t like them. Not for any of the reasons this guy was listing, but because the channel was hugely inappropriate in its humor. (And I mean gross levels of it. Not just that tongue in cheek kind of stuff.)

Anyway, so I wasn’t super defensive about hearing it criticized. And I thought the video made some legitimate points, but I won’t list them all here.

What I really was thinking about was the point that questioned if these wholly negative reviews were actually good reviews or good comedy.

I want to unpack that idea more than the actual video did, because I think it’s a whole missed discussion opportunity.

Judging both from the comment sections of YouTube, and actual people I’ve heard talk about this, many just don’t see the point of even caring about movie reviews or reviewers, and whether they are serious or not, because, in these people’s minds, movies should not be taken that seriously.

To those people I would say that when kids are kissing frogs and maniacs are planning crimes because of something they saw in a movie, we had better take it seriously.

Even if what we take out of that is that people are morons.

Well, to be fair, many of them are.

But stupidity, in my experience, is almost always taught. It’s not an innate trait of the average person to be an idiot. There’s always a few who just seem to be born without a clue, but usually it’s choices made between childhood and adulthood that shape someone’s intelligence.

Even so, intelligence is not a permanent thing. People can become stupider, they can also become smarter. We used to understand that before IQ tests cam along to tell us those things are set in stone.

So, the charge that movies are playing to the stupidest parts of human nature, and society, should be taken seriously. Because it reflects on us, what we find funny, and what we support.

People like Cinema Sins are right to be disgusted with cinema that is only there to be stupid and “funny.”

I think the dumbest thing anyone can say about movies is that they don’t matter and should not be taken seriously.

That eliminates about a third of the voices on this subject.

So, turning to the other two main opinions on reviews, I want to explain where I am on this.

At first when I started watching negative reviews, I liked it. I was frustrated with plenty of the entertainment out there, and I thought a lot of it was dumb. It was nice to be agreed with by a public source. Plus, it was funny; and I also learned some terms that people use and how movies and shows are typically rated. All helpful and interesting stuff to know for the movie goer who really wants to be careful about their time.

But the problem was, these reviews picked apart movies I did like as well as movies I didn’t. Sometimes I acknowledged they had a point. But other times, like with my favorite movie of all, it was really painful to hear it mocked to dust.

More recently I started seeking out more positive reviews. Cinema Wins, a spin off of the other, makes good review that are all focused on finding the bright side. Another good channel was How It Should Have Ended; which does poke a lot of fun at films, but ultimately they are positive, and just freaking genius some of the time. (If you like that type of humor. I won’t say everyone would like it.)

Now, Cinema Wins is sometimes naively positive about movies. But the guy knows he is, and admits it. Which is why I prefer it to these negative Nancy reviews I’m so sick of. A reviewer of movies should actually want to like movies. Otherwise how can they admit anything is of merit in any franchise?

See, at first it didn’t occur to me that watching movies expressly to find fault was a problem. But once I noticed that I couldn’t enjoy even movies I liked as much anymore now that I had all this negativity going through my mind, I got upset.

I’m not even a big fan of the entertainment industry as a whole. But when I find a gem, I don’t like it being picked apart.

Now everyone will have different standards for what constitutes a good movie. Often I think people go by the wrong things, but that’s because reviews have shifted to focusing on stuff that is minor.

How well a scene is shot, how colorful it is, or how melodic the soundtrack is are not really major things. And nitpicking every line of dialogue, or every element that doesn’t make perfect sense can completely miss the point both of the movie, and of storytelling itself.

When people used to gather around storytellers (like we do around TVs now) it didn’t matter how realistic the story was. The point was in what it meant. Was it a warning? Did it explain something about life? Did it give hope?

What’s ironic is that now, many movies and books actually use this older reason for storytelling telling as a plot point within their story.

Take that briefly popular The Giver book. The whole story turns on the past, the stories as it were, that the Giver shares with the Receiver.

The same thing with Ayn Rand’s little Anthem story. The books and tales of the past end up opening Prometheus’ eyes to the present.

It’s sad that even though this element of storytelling is used, it has to be done undercover, because people will pick the actual book to pieces over little things.

No one would fault the Receiver for accepting what the Giver tells him. (Or gives him. I haven’t actually read the book.) But in the real world, stories aren’t often received so well.

I think I’ll have to make a part two to finish this properly, so until next post–Natasha.

Bear the pain without breaking.

Let me return to the past post today so that you may read it in the future.

Too much?

Sorry.

Anyway, I want to write about an interesting part of the X-men movie I mentioned in my previous post.

It’s when Old Charles tells Young Charles that “It is the greatest gift we have, to bear their (humanity’s) pain without breaking.”

I got to thinking about this idea. I’ve been rereading another old favorite book of mine, Rilla of Ingleside (the final Anne of Green Gables book.) Montgomery knew how to get emotion out of her readers. This book is one exhausting trip through WWI, but worth reading.

The people in this story perhaps feel the pain of the world too much. I get that the wars were terrible and people had a lot of strain, but I find it hard to believe it was quite as constant and terrorizing as this story portrays.

Not to disrespect what they suffered, I just think humanity naturally adapts and pushes away grim realities in order not to go insane.

But anyway, this book will make you feel the terrible things of war, and the grief and endurance also.

Also it draws together all the many types of people in that world. The imaginative and the dull; the clever and the simple; the devout and the reprobate; all of them are raised to a new level of importance. And the barriers between some of them are broken down.

Shared suffering can do more to make peace between individuals than any amount of good events would. Because people are stubborn, and pain tends to be the only thing that breaks us down.

How does this tie in to X-men of all things?

I mentioned before that Magneto is selfish, whereas Charles is selfless. And I also mentioned that Magneto’s selfishness lies in his ignorance of other people’s suffering.

Somewhere along the line, Charles decided to feel other people’s pain, and Erik decided to bar himself from it.

My question is, how many of us do the same thing?

It’s not hard for me to imagine how other people feel, I can put myself in their place. What is hard is wanting to, especially when it affects me personally.

We never want to be wrong after all.

Then again, some of us would rather be constantly apologizing for no clear wrongdoing than standing up for ourselves or others.

So maybe there’s no cut and dried human way of dealing with blame. But there are pretty basic ways of dealing with pain.

There is so much suffering out there now, one really couldn’t feel all of it deeply. At least, that’s what I’ve thought.

It doesn’t do to dwell on it.

Besides I know too many people who have broken under it, or if not broken, at least bent.

Bearing pain without breaking takes more strength than I have. The only way I can handle it it to lean on God.

I know there are some who might find that a cliche, easy way out sort of answer.

Or even wimpy. Like I’m not tough enough to bear pain  like other people so I need to imagine someone out there who can help me.

My personal opinion is that nayone who thinks they can bear the wieght of the world without breaking is deluded.

To me it would be far worse to think that pain and sin are just things we have to live with, and there is no escaping it.

There had better be an escape. Otherwise, why are we living at all?

Isn’t that what Charles concludes? destruction isn’t the course humanity has to take, only the course it tends to take because of the cruel acts people do against each other.

And Magneto’s selfishness feeds those acts. While the selflessness of the X-men is what finally turns the tide.

That’s all for now,until next time–Natasha.

P. S. (my rule is no posting on Sunday’s but I’m making an exception because this was mostly written days ago and I kept getting interrupted before I published it, so here it is.)

Boasting, binging, and beginning.

First of all, I apologize for not posting in several days. I’ve been out of commission.

But today I feel better, so here we go:

You know what I notice about technology? It’s a tough thing to break away from.

But what if our addiction to it isn’t just because its addictive (though it is as addictive as drugs.) What if we have more addicts in our culture simply because our values have altered so much that we encourage it?

That’s not really  a new idea, but I think the implications of it tend to go over our heads.

We can all agree that entertainment industries feed our addictions. They even have the audacity to boast in their commercials that they are “bingeworthy, you can’t miss it, you can’t go without it, it’s irresistible”… sounds familiar right?

What if I said that about my posts? You have to read this. (Hey, we get emails titled that don’t we?)

Well, I’m not kidding myself. No one has to read my stuff. No one is going to die if they don’t see my latest. Come on.

Frankly those commercials annoy the heck out of me.

But how little resistance there is to them now. Being an addict is even kind of cool now, in the meaningless way anything is cool nowadays. (Cool used to be a certain way of acting and thinking and dressing, now I’m not sure what it means except that you like something.)

People joke (READ:Brag) about binging on things that they can’t get enough of. And the rest of us laugh; ha ha, they have no self control, it’s hilarious!

I suppose it’s equally hilarious when it is deadly things like drugs and alcohol.

So what about technology? We’re proud of being addicted to that too. Well, I’m not.

I don’t mind loving a good show or movie, or finding usefulness in electronics, but that’s nothing to be proud of.

The pride isn’t obvious, most of us wouldn’t use that word at all; but what else would you call it?

Getting the latest version of whatever. Getting to a more difficult level of a video game. Getting so many likes or views on Facebook, twitter, Instagram, you name it.

Getting a bigger TV, getting a better car, getting those channels on TV that other people can’t get.

Being able to say you’ve seen every single episode of this show, or that you’ve seen this movie so many times in theaters.

Even being slightly embarrassed about how much you consume can be something to brag about….I’m not clear on why. It just is.

Because somehow, admitting it makes it okay. I may do nothing at all to rectify my problem, but at least I’m not deceiving myself.

Except I am. Many of us are. We think that just because our friends (both in person and online) don’t judge us for our weaknesses in addiction, that means it’s okay.

Which is like a colorblind person thinking they know the difference between yellow and pink, just because all their friends are blind.

That’s an unlikely example in the physical world, but when it comes to mental things, it’s all too common.

The fact is, all our friends are not likely to point out our problem because chances are we only make friends with people who have the very dame problem.

What would most Americans have in common with anyone who did not own a TV, or a smart phone, and preferred old fashioned entertainments and knew nothing about pop culture.

I don’t mean to generalize, there are Americans who don’t buy into all that stuff, but there’s precious few of us who don’t own a TV and struggle with this problem at some level.

What’s hard is even getting the younger generation to see it as a problem. They have grown up with their lives wrapped around technology and entertainment. They boast about how much of it they consume.

The older generation admits it’s a problem but often is too susceptible to it themselves and they don’t set a strong example.

In my family the problem tends to be that each person spends a portion of the day engaged in other activities, but we don’t do it at the same time. One person’s play hour might be another’s work hour, so we distract each other without meaning to.

In some ways, having a designated room for TV and another for study and work is a better arrangement, but too often it becomes an excuse for isolation.

I know I harp on about this subject a lot, but part of the reason is that I mself notice that if I’m not regularly reminded of the dangers of screen addiction, I start slipping into it and not bothering to fight it.

So I’ll end with a few tips for at least cutting back on it, though eliminating it completely is something I haven’t figured out yet.

  1. Don’t be constant: It sounds like weird advice, but one thing to do is to limit what you watch in a day. One TV program, one movie. My mom used to give us time limits for how long we could use the computer for a movie or game. Sometimes I hold off watching anything until a certain time of day, and then only one thing. (It’s too easy now to just passively sit while someone else puts on something unfortunately, but if you live alone  or with less people that’s not such a problem.)
  2. Just don’t: Kids and teens will usually give into the temptation without much resistance; not because they are by nature more susceptible to addiction, but because they tend to go along with what adults are doing, and make poor choices when left to themselves. Humanity in general is not apt to make wise choices as it is. But with no one to watch us, we tend to do worse. So just don’t let your kids have access to technology except when it’s necessary or it’s a special occasion.

 

That’s about all I’ve got. Self control in this area is particularly difficult due to how often we are tempted. Total abstinence seems to be the only guarantee for never slipping.

But since perfection is not what we can expect, limitations are a good place to begin.

I don’t give up hope of conquering this addiction, but I admit it is hard and the hardest part is realizing it’s a problem. It just doesn’t feel like a problem most of the time.

Anyway, here’s hoping, until next time–Natasha.

Redeeming the time: X-men style.

When I did my X-men review, I wanted to go more into Days of Future Past, but I ran out of time. So, here we go.

Honestly, this one was my favorite.

I’m going to jump right in by bringing up the principle theme, split into two different plot lines, of the film.

The theme is Redemption.

First off we learn that in the future mutants are hunted down (so much for the efforts of the X-men in all the previous movies) and so are any humans who side with them or who harbor some early form of the mutant x-gene.

The reason all this happened is not because of Magneto’s heinous acts against humanity, as one might expect, but because of one murder of Mystique’s. Her first ( not her last.)

Mystique was always a pretty rough and seemingly merciless and conscience-less character in the first three films, in the fourth we learn she wasn’t always that way, in the fifth they finally get around to asking “What if she could have been different?”

If they could stop her from murdering the man, Trask, they could stop the war that is killing off all of them.

What if?

There are a couple things that come to my mind when I think about the idea of traveling back in time to save people.

There’s my favorite book, Till We Have Faces, in which the main character thinks that the gods can change the past. At first thinking they do so to make us seem guilty, and later realizing they do so by changing us ourselves into different people.

Then there is that verse in the Bible that says we redeem the time because the days are evil.

That certainly fits this movie’s whole premise.

I don’t believe time travel is strictly possible. But if it were, I would think it was like any other gift, meant to be used to help and to heal, but able to be used to do damage.

There’s plenty of fiction that covers the latter, but this film interestingly enough shows how, even with the best of intentions, someone could still make the future worse than ever by going back. There’s a delicate moment when Future Charles warns the team not to wake Logan up, or there will be a worse darkness than there is now. By which he means that thanks to Erik, the mutants will have exterminated humans.

Now if Logan had not gone back and busted Erik out, that could not have happened.

Actually Erik was mostly useless in the film. He didn’t help convince Raven not to shoot the guy, he didn’t try to change the people’s minds about mutants, he almost sealed their fate.

But I guess it was better for him.

Raven was the most intriguing character to me from the beginning, since I had heard she turned good eventually, but I was constantly frustrated by her poor choices.

What I liked about this film was its disdain of the idea that Raven was meant to kill Trask, and that the War was meant to happen. Of course those terrible things weren’t meant to happen.

The movie admits, through Younger Charles, that Raven needs to have a choice, but it never leaves any doubt that there is only one right choice for her to make.

That’s the thing abut knowing the future, it’s pretty hard to argue with it.

The reason Raven refuses to listen at first seems to be pure stubbornness and resentment of Charles’es attempt to control her; but I think it’s also human nature to deny consequences to our bad choices…why else do we make them?

The theme of redeeming the time comes in strongly in another way, through Logan’s wake up call to Charles himself. We know that before Logan came back, Charles wasted a good portion of those years, and was not there for Raven or for other mutants, as Erik spitefully (and unjustly considering his many betrayals) points out.

But Charles changes that, and redeems his own time as well as Raven’s.

Raven always chose Erik before, he was more intriguing, he had a sort of magnetic personality, even Charles felt its pull though he knew better than to listen to him.

What makes Raven in the end choose Charles is a number of factors.

Partly it’s that she realizes a lot sooner that Erik is not loyal to her, and does not care about her in any recognizable way; as she had thought he did. (By the way, trying to kill someone and then flirting with them when it is too late is sick and only seems charismatic in movies.)

Partly it’s that she is told the future depends basically on her actions. (Which is one thing that does not change oddly enough. People are positioned, they don’t get to choose that, they only get to choose how they use that position.)

But the most important thing that changes her mind is Charles’es persistence, and finally his releasing of her to be who she truly is.

And who she was, he believes, was never the person Erik saw her as, Older Erik admits he set her on a dark path; who she was was not even exactly what Charles himself thought, she was more than that.

When released from those negative expectations, Raven realizes what she really wants, and she drops the gun.

That moment was every bit as epic as it was intended to be, because we know how hard they worked for it.

Raven sees an opportunity to be seen as a hero instead of a villain, and she chooses it. And I personally thought the look on her face when she turns to Charles and Hank afterwards was pure relief.

Raven actually saves her own life by doing this, though no one ever actually told her (in the cut version I saw) that she died as a result of shooting Trask.

Much like another fictional character named Raven (Ever After High), she changes the whole course of history in one moment.

And who knows when any one of us might do the same thing?

Until next time–Natasha.

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