I think I was amongst many confused fans after watching X-Men: Days of Future Past last year upon seeing Anna Paquin’s name so high in the credits, especially given that I’d only seen the back of Rogue’s head once throughout the entire duration of the film. As soon as I got home, I ran to my computer and launched chrome, desperate to know what I had missed. Turns out, there was an entirely different cut of the film that featured Rogue as a main character within it; yet, it was cut.
According to the writer, Simon Kinberg:
“The Rogue subplot was originally there because I wanted a mission for the older Charles and Eric to do… I just loved the idea of that. Nothing in the story necessitated that, but just for a lark, I thought it would be a cool thing to see, because we may never see it again.”
The aforementioned mission is set after Kitty is wounded by Wolverine in his dream state – a wound that quickly makes her powers redundant and dwindling away. In order to prevent Wolverine’s mission from failing, Charles (Patrick Stewart), Eric (Ian McKellen) and Bobby (Shawn Ashmore) travel to the school to save Rogue, who is being experimented on for her powers. They do find her, but Bobby’s killed in the process and upon their arrival back at the complex, Kitty starts understandably crying (her boyfriend is dead) before Rogue unceremoniously steals Kitty’s power (and almost kills her), before continuing on. The rest of the film is exactly as I remember, except we see Rogue using her powers on Wolverine, not Kitty.
“It does not service the main story. I thought it would increase the urgency and the stakes of the plot in the future, but it actually does the opposite, because it makes you feel like there is an answer out there. You think once Rogue gets here, we’ll have an unlimited amount of time. The ticking clock that we’d established with Kitty getting wounded and losing her powers… well, Rogue would show up and press stop on the clock. So for all of those narrative reasons, there was this ten-minute subplot that had to go.”
And this is exactly how the Rogue cut pans out. Though I thoroughly enjoyed an extra few minutes of X-Men, the subplot weakened the film substantially, adding in extra scenes for the sake of having two characters in a scene together. As soon as I understood Rogue’s role, I wanted out.
This notwithstanding, the writers and directors of Days of Future Past should be praised for having the foresight to understand what this plot does for the film, and rightfully eliminate it. Our original review by Chris Singh scored a huge four and a half stars (out of five). But Rogue’s addition in Days of Future Past cheapens the otherwise fantastic, thought-provoking story-line, instead opting for a safe and quickly resolved subplot. It’s not like I’m complaining though – I just got an extra ten minutes of screen time to last me until X-Men: Apocalypse comes out in 2016.
Subplot Review Score: TWO STARS (OUT OF FIVE)
The Version Fans Have Been Waiting For hits Blu-ray™, DVD and Digital HD on July 15! Includes an Alternate, Never-Before-Seen Cut and Nearly 90 Minutes of New Special Features, as well as the Theatrical Version.