The first trailer for X-Men: Apocalypse dropped on Friday, and it’s full of grandiose theater, mutant on mutant violence, Bible talk, and more. Considering where we started with First Class, this young cast of mutants has come a long way, and now find themselves defending the very people who once cast them out.
Whereas Days of Future Past was all about reversing the self-destruction of mankind, Apocalypse will see Charles Xavier and his crew face up against a mutant hellbent on eliminating humans for good. But not just any mutant; the very first mutant, known as En Sabah Nur/Apocalype (Oscar Isaac). The ancient being appears quite unhappy with his children following “blind leaders,” but he is here for them now.
What a kind, benevolent fellow. When someone is willing to wipe out billions of people, you know it’s true love.
The trailer begins with a young Jean Grey (Sophie Turner) waking up from a nightmare. Images of death flash on the screen, and Grey explains to Charles (James McAvoy) that she’s seen the end of the world; in fact, she has felt it. We all know what kind of clairvoyant powers Jean Grey possesses, but Professor X just brushes them off. “It was just a dream,” he comforts. Little does he know that her vision is about to become reality.
We descend upon an ancient European city, with a voiceover from Isaac’s Apocalypse talking about his past. He approaches a desk, where we get our first look at Caliban and Storm. She is one of his disciples (as we’ll see later), though it isn’t clear how their paths crossed in the first place. Apocalypse gently places his hand on Storm’s chin; there’s a kind of paternal tenderness to it.
At the CIA building, Moira MacTaggert (Rose Byrne) starts telling Charles and Havok about how secret societies have started popping up ever since the world found out about mutants. One mutant in particular is a focus of the discussion, and that is Apocalypse. The trailer shows the camera panning over an old city, which we assume is the one we saw Apocalypse building in the end-credits scene attached to Days of Future Past.
“You are all my children, and you’re lost because you follow blind leaders,” Apocalypse says. It’s clear the character very much feels mutants should not coexist with humans, and should instead use their powers to gain God-like admiration. We get glimpses of Beast, Mystique, Nightcrawler and Jubilee, who we presume are the “lost” disciples.
It seems some aspects of have been written about Apocalypse, specifically the story about him and the Four Horseman. As described by the Christian Bible, the Four Horsemen refers to the forces of man’s destruction; in the context of X-Men, the character uses other mutants in which to do his bidding, imbuing them with great power (Pestilence, War, Famine and Death). In Apocalypse, his posse includes Storm, Archangel, Psylocke and Magneto, though we’re not sure what “role” they’ll play as part of the Horsemen.
The trailer cuts to a scene right outside of Cerebro, where Apocalypse and his Horsemen confront Charles, Mystique, Beast, Moira and Havok; Magneto grabs Charles in his fancy new chair and pulls him toward Apocalypse. The trailer cuts again, and we get a few inspirational quotes from Beast and Mystique, with the two talking about how they want to save the world.
The next thing we see is in the cockpit of Blackbird, with the whole crew in tow; new additions include Quicksilver (Evan Peters) and Cyclops (Tye Sheridan). We’re not sure how far into the movie this scene is, but Havok isn’t there, and the crew is looking pretty underpowered. Charles is also gone, so this could be some kind of rescue mission. We see another scene where a group of people—Quicksilver, Beast, Moira and Mystique—appear knocked out. Could this be the Danger Room?
In the thick of destruction, Jean Grey, Nightcrawler, and Cyclops are being led by Mystique, who tells them they shouldn’t worry about controlling their powers. That is, embrace their capabilities and just fight. “This is war,” Mystique says.
After a quick look at a angsty Magneto, we see what appears to be Charles trying to fight with Apocalypse, but clearly he is no match for the ancient being—at least physically. They’re in a dark mansion, and Apocalypse just continues to get bigger and bigger, no doubt symbolism for Apocalypse growing stature among the mutant community.
The next scene we see Quicksilver racing through the mansion, though we don’t know what he’s actually doing. Quicksilver’s scenes in Days of Future Past were easily the best part, and it looks like we’ll once again see the character doing some cool stuff. Evan Peters has already said what they’re doing with the character in Apocalypse is going to blow our minds, and this is just a small glimpse of what’s to come.
Well, things are certainly looking bad for Mystique and her crew, as Archangel, Storm and Magneto all appear to be at the height of their powers. We assume they’re fighting against the “good” mutants, though perhaps this is a pivotal point in the story where they decide to turn against Apocalypse.
“Everything they’ve built will fall, and from the ashes of their world, we’ll build a better one,” Apocalypse shouts. It’s all very theatrical, and very much reminds me of how Ronan acted in Guardians of the Galaxy. Not that I’m saying the two characters are the same. But there’s something very similar about the way they act. (I know, I know, two very different worlds and movies. Just felt like pointing that out.)
A shot from the same scene of New York, with plenty of destruction happening. The same kind of explosions are occurring across the scene—you can see the Twin Towers in the background. And, finally, we see Charles with the Cerebro helmet on, remarking that he’s never felt such intense power as his eyes go black. Considering Apocalypse is capable of controlling other mutants, this sure doesn’t look good.