The X-men are in a state of shock following the death of Jean Grey (Famke
Janssen). Cyclops (James Marsden) can hear her calling to him and is lured
to the spot of her death. A flashback shows a visit some 20 years previous by Charles and Eric (Stewart and McKellen) to recruit her as a child and we learn that she has awesome powers that have to be kept in check. Now Jean's gone over to the dark side. If that isn't all, the government has discovered a drug that can transform mutants back into 'ordinary' human beings and the mutant camp is divided.
Naturally Magneto claims that the government will force them to convert and as evidence points to Mystique (Rebecca Romijin) who was transformed during his rescue attempt to free her. Ironically he discards her as not worthy of association with him. As the X-men reel from a further shock and Magneto decides to take out
the lab which is housed on Alcatraz, Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) must try and
cope with his feelings for Jean and convince her not to unleash her powers.
In spite of the billing as the final instalment, X-Men: The Last Stand still brings a twist at the end that suggests the way is open to a fourth film. There are a
number of new mutants, with the biggest role going to Beast (Kelsey Grammer) who is briefly in the President's cabinet.
Other new mutants include Angel (Ben Foster), as the son of the billionaire who financed the drug research, and a mutant who can create multiple clones of himself (Eric Dane) and Callisto (Dania Ramirez), who can instantly teleport.
Even Vinnie Jones pops up as Juggernaut, who bulldozes things out of his way. The scene is set for a showdown at the old prison and here the best special effect of the three movies is seen as Magneto uses the Golden Gate Bridge as a means of transport, though there is a fine CGI holo chamber scene early on.
There's plenty of action, and even time for Wolverine to brood a lot as well. Storm (Halle Berry) is given surprisingly little to do and it's up to McKellen and Janssen to camp it up a little. The dialogue could have done with a little tweaking - lines speculating on Einstein's abilities wouldn't be missed - but overall it's fun, fast and at times furious.