“The New Mutants” (20th Century)
By Catholic News Service
This 13th and officially final installment of the “X-Men” film series is an unsatisfying conclusion to the once-mighty franchise, a dreary, derivative and gratuitous horror thriller, based on a set of Marvel Comics, directed and co-written by Josh Boone.
Five teenagers (Charlie Heaton, Blu Hunt, Anya Taylor-Joy, Maisie Williams and Henry Zaga) identified as possessing extraordinary abilities live in an isolated clinic run by a mysterious doctor (Alice Braga). They begin to wonder if the facility is more prison than hospital when odd manifestations occur, including (for no apparent reason) a bloodthirsty Catholic clergyman wielding a branding iron. Little about the film makes any narrative sense. Instead, it only succeeds in being shocking and overblown.
Frequent violence and terror, anti-Catholic religious imagery and bias, same-sex kissing, sexual innuendo, occasional profane and crude language. The Catholic News Service classification is O — morally offensive. The Motion Picture Association rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.