Fox made a trip to New York Comic-Con, and like most studios hosting a panel, those in attendance got to check out exclusive clips for its upcoming movies. At an AMC theater outside of Madison Square Garden, con-goers got to watch a continuous scene from Dark Phoenix, where the X-Men have to leave Earth.
While viewers weren’t told specifically when the scene takes place within the context of the movie, it was pretty clear it happens early on. The X-Men–Beast, Cyclops, Jean Grey, Nightcrawler, Storm and Quicksilver, led by Mystique–take the Blackbird into space in order to save some stranded astronauts in the Space Shuttle Endeavour, which was active in the real world from 1992-2011. During the rescue mission, something goes awry and Jean almost dies. However, everyone survives and both the astronauts and X-Men are welcomed back to Earth as heroes.
Viewers were warned that the effects weren’t finalized and neither was the sound, but it didn’t really matter. It still looked pretty great for an early look. The most exciting parts of the scene were seeing everyone work together as a team, primarily both Quicksilver and Nightcrawler, two characters that have grown into a larger role in the newest X-Men film. There’s something wonderfully satisfying about seeing Nightcrawler “bamf” in space or watching Quicksilver work from his perspective where everyone else is in slow motion comparatively. The scene hits on the things we loved about previous film in a nice, little showcase.
It was a basic sequence that was layered with a whole lot more to add to the event plot twists that we’ve seen in the trailer. There is tension growing between Professor X and, well, everyone else. Xavier wants a world where the X-Men are celebrated as heroes, not hated and hunted. That means the X-Men have to go on missions to save the common man, and sometimes, these missions are called in from the President on an “X-Phone.” Yes, a phone with a giant “X” on it. However, Mystique has a problem with this, thinking it’s just stroking Xavier’s ego, as Jean’s life was almost lost in space.
Xavier means well, but you can start seeing a rift in the group, which is a nice addition to this movie, as they’re not just up against “the biggest supervillain threat they’ve ever faced.” Yes, there will more than likely be some of that coming by way of Dark Phoenix, but at least that isn’t the only real problem this team has to face.
However fun the scene may have seemed, there is still some skepticism about the entirety of the film, as the last film in the series, X-Men Apocalypse, was heavier on the pop and flash rather than telling a compelling and interesting story. It’s hard to constantly try and raise the bar when every movie almost ends with the villain destroying the planet. And that could likely happen with Dark Phoenix, but the layering of the team splitting up as well as the villain being someone on the team could very well ground this film a bit more and tug at the emotional heartstrings of the audience.
We’ll find out more about Dark Phoenix in upcoming months before its theatrical release on June 7, 2018.