Wolverine and Historical Accuracy

Famous movie critic Roger Ebert has a bone to pick with the history behind X-Men Origins: Wolverine, a Fox movie that came out in theaters last weekend, and which is a story about the origins of the Marvel superhero Logan/Wolverine and his conflict with his half-brother Victor/Sabertooth. The two men are mutants with healing powers that slow, or even stop, aging, and the opening scenes show them fighting in wars across the last two centuries of American history.

Their story starts in “1840 — the Northwest Territories of Canada,” a neat trick, since Canada was formed in 1867, and its Northwest Territories in 1870. But you didn’t come here for a history lesson. Or maybe you did, if you need to know that Logan and Victor became Americans (still before they could be Canadians) and fought side by side in the Civil War, World War I, World War II and Vietnam. Why they did this, I have no idea. Maybe they just enjoyed themselves.

Yeah, as I just got finished saying elsewhere, Hollywood is very disappointing when it comes to accuracy, especially when considering that it would take such minimal effort to get it right.

About Curzon

Lord George Nathaniel Curzon (1859 - 1925) entered the British House of Commons as a Conservative MP in 1886, where he served as undersecretary of India and Foreign Affairs. He was appointed Viceroy of India at the turn of the 20th century where he delineated the North West Frontier Province, ordered a military expedition to Tibet, and unsuccessfully tried to partition the province of Bengal during his six-year tenure. Curzon served as Leader of the House of Lords in Prime Minister Lloyd George's War Cabinet and became Foreign Secretary in January 1919, where his most famous act was the drawing of the Curzon Line between a new Polish state and Russia. His publications include Russia in Central Asia (1889) and Persia and the Persian Question (1892). In real life, "Curzon" is a US citizen from the East Coast who has been a financial analyst, freelance translator, and university professor; he is currently on assignment in Tokyo.
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6 Responses to Wolverine and Historical Accuracy

  1. DJ says:

    Yeah, the intro with the fathers was also very bizarre and unexplained. The previous media (an films) made it clear he was Canadian. The film gave no explanation why they fought for the US. Then later in film while avoiding going back to work for the US he said he was Canadian. It was like the filmmakers did not want to make the Canadian government be the evil government doing human experimentation.

  2. James says:

    So much for expecting realism and accuracy from a movie about super powerful mutants…

  3. Anthony says:

    Well, Hollywood always favored drama over historical accuracy. If Top Gun followed the facts the way their Naval Adviser explained to them, it would have been a boring movie-documentary rather than the coolest film of the 1980′s.

    Always remember, “Ma and Pa from Oklahoma” (as movie producers love to say) don’t know all the facts anyways. They just want to be amazed by what they see!

  4. von Kaufman-Turkestansky says:

    When will they make a movie out of Alpha Flight? Who will play Prime Minister Trudeau?


  5. Thomas says:

    Except it’s not at all easy to get it right. Why, because there are tens of thousands of historical, technical and protocol details that go into each film. Millions of Americans will watch said film and, no matter how hard the producers, advisers and script supervisor try to match up every detail, they’ll never get them all.

    So, why bother?

    If a substantial majority of the people making the movie don’t see a problem, most of the people watching it won’t have a problem and y’can’t please everybody all the time.

  6. Adamu says:

    Pissing off geeks makes the normal people happy, so they love to step on people who care about history. Ninjas vs. samurai in the Last Samurai? You got it.