The Dove Take:
With relevant themes and discussion-worthy topics in abundance, Dark Phoenix feels like a missed opportunity, especially as it keeps mental health on a leash. The film, somewhat violent in nature, cannot be approved by Dove.
Jean Grey begins to develop incredible powers that corrupt and turn her into a Dark Phoenix. Now the X-Men will have to decide if the life of a team member is worth more than all the people living in the world.
The X-Men series has gone on for some time now. Marvel seems to go and go, even when following a tough act of the popular vote with Avengers: Endgame only last April. In the lens of relevancy, what does another X-Men installment not only offer but stack up against in a league of films some begin to call tiresome?The surprising truth is that Dark Phoenix offers quite a lot—which does not necessarily mean, unfortunately, that it is achieved with the truth and dignity it deserves. The latest film in the franchise offers an important message buried between action and drama, yet never chooses to seize the moment. All the more unfortunate is that it seems almost intentional to not let the film make its true say.
The key component of the film is the mental state and wellness of Jean Grey (Sophie Turner), a gifted mutant student of the proverbial Professor X (James McAvoy). She comes from a traumatic place and struggles deeply with old memories and new powers. Surely these can result in some profound, captivating insights into mental health and awareness, which the film seems it wants to tap into. Yet, being the film’s greatest source of demise, Dark Phoenix revolves so much around talking about Jean and her struggles instead of watching her experience them and overcome them. Especially for Turner, who grew so favorably in the fan-favorite series Game of Thrones, the film dodges giving her the opportunity onscreen that she deserves. For a comic-book picture, the film features so much more talk than action.