Following is Westport News film critic Susan Granger's review of the new move, "X-Men: Days of Future Past:"
When is a sci-fi sequel also a prequel? When Logan/Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) time travels 50 years into the past in a desperate effort to alter the course of history and thwart what could be doomsday for humans and mutants like.
Sometime in the dark, desolate, dystopian future, an army of gigantic killer robots, known as Sentinels, has almost succeeded in annihilating all the mutants and their human supporters.
Professor Charles Xavier (Patrick Stewart) and his longtime friend/rival, Erik Lehnsherr/Magneto (Ian McKellen) are hidden with their few remaining allies in a remote Chinese safe house.
Their only hope is to use Kitty Prude's (Ellen Page) mental powers to project Logan/Wolverine's (Jackman) consciousness back to 1973 to erase the Sentinel program from history.
Catapulting through world history, including JFK's assassination, the Vietnam War and Richard Nixon's presidency, cutlery-fisted Wolverine must convince reclusive, mentally/physically crippled Young Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), who's with Hank/Beast (Nicolas Hoult). And with the help of Wolverine's agile pal Peter/Quicksilver (Evan Peters), they manage to infiltrate the Pentagon, free anarchistic Young Magneto (Michael Fassbender) from incarceration and foil angry, blue-skinned, shape-shifting Raven/Mystique's (Jennifer Lawrence) plan to kill villainous, mutant-hating Dr. Bolivar Trask (Peter Dinklage), since that would only accelerate the Sentinel program.
Loosely adapted from Chris Claremont's comic book with a story by Jane Goldman, Simon Kinberg and Matthew Vaughn, the confusing, convoluted screenplay is credited to producer Simon Kinberg and adroitly directed by Bryan Singer with lots of astonishing CGI and visual effects.
To keep track of the characters/timeline, it would certainly help to have seen all the other previous installments. With such a large cast, not everyone gets equal time -- like Storm (Halle Berry), Rogue (Anna Paquin), Havok (Lucas Till) and Iceman (Shawn Ashmore). New additions include Blink (Chinese star Bingbing Fan), Bishop (Omar Sy), Sunspot (Adan Canto) and Warpath (Booboo Stewart).
On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "X-Men: Days of Future Past" is a suspenseful, satisfying 7. Stay to the end of the credits for a glimpse of the next mutant-centric installment.