X-Men: Days of Travelling to the Past and Stuff

WTF is X-Men: Days of Travelling to the Past and Stuff?

X-Men: Days of Future Past is this really weird X-Men movie I watched last night, where it’s the future and the X-Men are getting killed by giant robots, so they zap Wolverine’s memories to the past so that his past!self can stop the government from getting Mystique’s DNA and using it to build the giant robots. The young cast is here, and the old cast is here, and the movie uses its own weird, made-up rules of time travel.

The Weird, Made-Up Rules of Time Travel:

Kitty Pryde can zap people in the head and send their memories back in time. That means that, in the past, that person knows everything their future self knows for the exact length of time that Kitty’s zapping them in the future, and they can use that information to make different choices and alter the course of history.

As long as Kitty’s zapping the time traveller’s head, the future she exists in (from which she zaps) and the future the zapped person’s actions create exist simultaneously. Once she stops zapping the time traveller, only the second future exists, and the time traveller is the only one who will remember that something changed.

Based on what we witness later in the movie, it would also appear that the zapped person’s original!timeline memories get downloaded into his or her body in new!timeline, replacing any memory of what happened in new!timeline between the time that history changed, and the time that the zapping would have taken place.

Assorted Observations:

  1. The best part of this movie by far – and maybe the only part that’s legitimately entertaining – is the scene pictured above, where Quicksilver runs around the kitchen in slow motion, making people punch themselves in the face. The special effects are great, the cinematography is gorgeous, and the scene is the right combination of funny and cool.
  2. The first ten minutes of this movie are about a bunch of randoms in the future, and they turned me into my mom. I sat there saying, “Am I supposed to know what’s going on? Are these ones with the portals in the other shows? That one with the flames is from a different story, isn’t he? Are all these guys in the same movies, now? Oh, I know who that one is – gosh, he must be eighty. I feel old.”
  3. But, seriously – were the ones with the portals in the other shows?
  4. The movie tries to create suspense by cutting back and forth between the main story, where Wolverine’s talking to young!Professor X and young!Magneto, and the future, where Kitty’s zapping his head and the robots are trying to kill everyone. The only reason this is suspenseful is because Kitty needs to stay alive and keep zapping Wolverine’s head long enough for him to use his future!knowledge to change the past.
  5. When Wolverine wakes up in the past, he immediately shares everything he knows with young!Professor X and young!Magneto and they both believe him and come up with separate, effective plans to stop the robots from taking over the world.
  6. About two thirds of the way through the movie, Wolverine uses his memories to let young!Professor X talk to himself in the future and gain the confidence he needs to stop the robots. After this point, Wolverine’s future!knowledge is never used again, and therefore it would make no difference if the robots killed Kitty.
  7. From Kitty’s perspective, she doesn’t know that Wolverine’s not doing anything in the final act of the movie, so it makes sense that she would keep zapping him to buy him as much time as possible, but, from an audience perspective, it becomes increasingly obvious that she doesn’t need to do that anymore, because young!Professor X and young!Magneto have already set actions in motion that ultimately solve the robot problem. Wolverine isn’t even there at the pivotal moment.
  8. It also raises the question – in the absence of getting killed, how long was Kitty going to keep zapping Wolverine? How would she know when it had been long enough for him to change the past? Can she actually see what’s going on? If she can, was she just waiting to be really, really sure his plan worked, even after he was incapacitated and trapped under water? Would she know that his plan worked, even when he didn’t know it himself?
  9. Also, Wolverine is in the past for at least a few days. Does Kitty stand there zapping him the whole time?
  10. In the end, Wolverine changes history so that, not only do the robots not start murdering all of the characters, but most of the X-Men who died in the previous movies somehow avoid their fates. When Wolverine wakes up in the future of new!timeline, he’s surprised to see everyone alive. Beast, Phoenix, Cyclops… and Storm.
  11. It’s true that Storm gets killed part way through this movie, but Wolverine should have no way of knowing that, and shouldn’t be surprised to see her. He was otherwise occupied with travelling to the past when she bit it and, the last time he saw her, she was totally fine.
  12. Young!Magneto is a moron. His whole mission is to stop the government from getting Mystique’s DNA, and he proposes to do that by killing her on government property. About five minutes after he fails to kill her, he admits that they were able to get her DNA from the blood she left behind when he shot her. Good one, super villain.
  13. Young!Professor X takes a serum that was designed to suppress mutant powers. It stops him from being telepathic and, as a side effect, temporarily heals the physical damage to his spine so he can walk again – huh?
  14. The only thing we learn about Rogue is that, in new!timeline, she’s still together with Iceman. I don’t remember if they broke up.
  15. I also don’t remember anything that happened in the third movie except that Jean had a really cool wig.
  16. I just looked it up and Professor X died in the third movie, so what the fuck? Why isn’t anyone surprised to see him?
  17. I give up.
Image: X-Men Days of Future Past; 20th Century Fox| April 17, 2015