Breaking the mold that has been established among big budget comic book movies, Logan was a dark and emotional film that thrust its adamantine claws into the hearts of its audience without mercy. It saw the loss of some of the X-Men franchise’s most beloved and powerful characters, which – for all the hope you could glean from Laura’s ending – left fans not only with an ache where those heroes used to be but also a vague sense of despair that the world will never be quite the same. It was a cinematic masterpiece that seemed to come completely out of the blue for anyone used to the colourful happy endings of Marvel‘s movies so far.
As if it needed to be any more harrowing and heartbreaking, director James Mangold has been famously working on a black and white edit of the film. He has gone into great detail when speaking about why it struck him so forcefully:
“During production of Logan I took many black and white photographs and noticed how striking and dramatic our gritty settings and characters appeared in monochrome. The western and noir vibes of the film seemed to shine in the format and there was not a trace of modern comic hero movie sheen. Then, while editing, Fox and I started posting some of the black and white stills online and fans also began to respond enthusiastically, many hoping that they would get a chance to see the finished film in carefully timed, high contrast black and white. Well. Sometimes hope becomes reality.”
In order to get the same effect on a full movie shot in colour, the entire film would have to be colour graded again, with each scene requiring a different level of fine tuning to consistently achieve the feeling Mangold was going for. But he is nothing if not a committed man and the black and white cut is now ready and out in the world.
A few Alamo Drafthouse cinemas around the USA will be screening the special edition cut, but otherwise fans will have to wait until the DVD and Blu-Ray release later on this month to see it.
In the meantime, you can get a feel for the new version’s essence with a stunning new trailer for what has now been dubbed Logan Noir: