There's a lot of stuff going on in the newest X-film. Some of it works, some of it doesn't but it, at the very least, is an entertaining movie. It'd be easy to compare it to Civil War (and we do in this episode) as many sites and reviews have done, but I'll instead talk about something else: being a dad.
For all of the issues I have with this movie, I really appreciate its attempt at exploring a theme of parenthood. Let us count the characters who have some kind of parent issue: Nightcrawler, Magneto, Quicksilver, Storm, Wolverine. Let's count the characters who are parents in some way: Apocalypse, Magneto, Mystique and Xavier.
There's an intriguing contrast between Xavier and Apocalypse when it comes to being a father figure. Both characters strive to make their "children" achieve their full potential, but their methods to do it are far different. The differences could almost be boiled down to intrinsic vs extrinsic motivation. Apocalypse enhances the powers of mutants to help them achieve their full potential, but it's not necessarily something they want. Magneto's on the fence stance about murdering a vast majority of the world's population is evidence of his fighting conscious. Xavier, on the other hand, asks his children to look inside themselves and grow rather than look for the immediate satisfaction. Jean, of course, is the best example of this intrinsic motivation (within this film).
Arguably, the film leans on the matriarchal evolution of Mystique and her shared history with Xavier and Magneto as evidence that Xavier's idealism is the way to go.
My last point is also the #obvi part of the whole film. In the climax, as Xavier is getting beat to hell by Apocalypse, he says something along the lines of, "you'll lose because you're alone and I'm not". If that's not the whole damn point of the movie, then I'm not sure what is!
As a father, I want my son to find the strength in his abilities on his own. I need him to discover his strengths and weaknesses and the things he's really good at. I don't want him to end up miserable in a dead end job or be stuck doing something he doesn't truly want to do. I want what's best for him and it's my job to guide him and help him discover these things about himself; not tell him what to do and how to do it.
In that respect, Xavier's school of Parenting is probably the way to go.
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