|X-Men Trilogy (2000) USA|
X-Men 2 (or X2 as it was marketed) delivers on the promise of the original. Without sacrificing story or character development, it adds stunning action and some great twists into what was at the time one of the best superhero films ever made. In fact, until The Dark Knight was released, it was difficult for me to decide which was the best superhero film: Spider-Man 2 or X-Men 2. Really, this film does have it all.
X-Men: The Last Stand is generally regarded as disappointing by many of the fans, but I think the criticism is a bit exaggerated. I agree, it's certainly not as good as what came before it. However, there's enough action and comedy on show to engage, even if The Dark Phoenix Saga isn't given enough time to be developed properly. That really is the main problem with the film; action is successful at the expense of the story. What you get is a genuinely entertaining film, but by comparison with the first two it's simply not as rewarding an experience.
Now the Blu-ray treatment. First, I watch my blu-ray films on a 42" Sony Bravia full HD 1080p TV, and use an extremely hefty surround sound kit. Both get a good workout from these films! The video quality is stunning (despite what the releases from other regions might look like), and the sound is just amazing, particularly in the sequence in X2 with Storm vs. the jet fighters.
Also, unlike some other hi-def releases, the extras aren't just direct copies from the old special edition dvds. Even though the extras on the previous 6-disc special edition box set were impressive, these go a step further by containing a good load of blu-ray exclusive special features, such as picture-in-picture features, which are particularly entertaining.
If you don't own the films at all, this is definitely the version to buy. If you own them on DVD as I did, this is definitely worth the upgrade. At £34.99 from most retailers and probably cheaper if you shop around, it's one of the best blu-ray deals around in terms of value for money.
Great entertainment in great quality. Highly recommended.