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X2: X-Men United (2003)

X2 (original title)
PG-13 | | Action, Sci-Fi, Thriller | 2 May 2003 (USA)
0:52 | Trailer
When anti-mutant Colonel William Stryker kidnaps Professor X and attacks his school, the X-Men must ally with their archenemy Magneto to stop him.


Bryan Singer


Zak Penn (story), David Hayter (story) | 4 more credits »
1,642 ( 14)
6 wins & 41 nominations. See more awards »





Cast overview, first billed only:
Patrick Stewart ... Professor Charles Xavier
Hugh Jackman ... Logan / Wolverine
Ian McKellen ... Eric Lehnsherr / Magneto
Halle Berry ... Ororo Munroe / Storm
Famke Janssen ... Jean Grey
James Marsden ... Scott Summers / Cyclops
Anna Paquin ... Rogue
Rebecca Romijn ... Raven Darkholme / Mystique / Grace (as Rebecca Romijn-Stamos)
Brian Cox ... William Stryker
Alan Cumming ... Kurt Wagner / Nightcrawler
Bruce Davison ... Senator Kelly
Aaron Stanford ... John Allerdyce / Pyro
Shawn Ashmore ... Bobby Drake / Ice Man
Kelly Hu ... Yuriko Oyama / Lady Deathstrike
Katie Stuart ... Shadowcat
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Several months have passed since the X-Men defeated Magneto and imprisoned him in a seemingly impregnable plastic chamber. One day, a mutant by the name of Nightcrawler infiltrates the White House and attempts to assassinate the President, setting off a chain reaction of anti-mutant measures by the government. Meanwhile, Logan is trying to discover his past. As scientist named William Stryker discovers Professor X's secret school and Cerebro, Magneto's partner, Mystique, is planning to break her leader out of prison. But when Professor X's school is attacked by Stryker's forces, Logan, Rogue, Iceman, and a few are lucky to escape. Those who remain meet in Boston, where they form an uneasy alliance with Magneto to stop Stryker and rescue Professor X. Written by John Wiggins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Get ready for the return of the Evolution See more »

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for sci-fi action/violence, some sexuality and brief language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The replica of the President's desk in the Oval Office was so detailed that it took two months to build. See more »


When Logan jumps from upstairs to save Rogue, Iceman and Pyro during the attack on the mansion, the three actors are standing on boxes to appear taller in the shot. See more »


[first lines]
Professor X: [voiceover] Mutants. Since the discovery of their existence they have been regarded with fear, suspicion, often hatred. Across the planet, debate rages. Are mutants the next link in the evolutionary chain or simply a new species of humanity fighting for their share of the world? Either way it is a historical fact: Sharing the world has never been humanity's defining attribute.
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Crazy Credits

SPOILER: The X-Films' title sequences features a weapon used by the villain of each film, backed by the X-Men's Cerebro device. In this film it is Stryker's Dark Cerebro sphere. See more »

Alternate Versions

In the American version of the movie, Wolverine asks for "something other than chocolate milk" and receives the reply "There should be some Dr Pepper..." In international versions, the replay is "There should be some soda...". In both versions, the bottle is still a Dr Pepper bottle, only the audio is altered. See more »


Referenced in Nostalgia Critic: The Amazing Spider-Man 2 (2020) See more »


Dies Irae from Mozart's Requiem in D Minor, K.626
Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Courtesy of Firstcom Music Inc.
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User Reviews

less cerebral, more conventional than the original
20 December 2003 | by Buddy-51See all my reviews

`X2: X-Men United' is the widely admired sequel to `X-Men,' one of the finest movies ever to be derived from a comic book series. The original film, in addition to being a superb piece of action cinema, dealt with such weighty issues as prejudice and alienation, showing how groups of people who are seen as `different' from the norm are often ostracized from and mistreated by society as a whole. By creating an entirely new set of people to serve as its outcasts - in this case, mutants endowed with extraordinary physical and mental powers - the film was able to strip the issue of bigotry down to its barest essentials and to make us see anew just how great a part `irrational fear of the unknown' plays in determining the ways we treat others. Quite an accomplishment for a film that was designed, essentially, to be little more than a commercial popcorn entertainment.

This second entry in the series, though it has generally received more positive reviews than the first one, seems less concerned with message and theme and more concerned with action and plotting. Part of the reason for this may lie in the fact that the initial film, because it was introducing both the characters and the concepts to the audience, was forced by necessity to deal with the theme in a more direct and comprehensive manner. Perhaps when it came to `X2,' director Bryan Singer and writers Michael Dougherty, Dan Harris and David Hayter simply felt that the theme had been explored sufficiently in the first installment and that any further concentration on it would appear redundant. The problem is that, without that added intellectual and sociological dimension, `X2' starts to feel an awful lot like every other comic book action film - heavy on adventure and special effects and weak on character development and point. In fact, even with the added bonus of almost 30 extra minutes in this episode (it runs an overlong 134 minutes), many of the characters in the film do little but stand around and look helpless while a select few run around saving the day and getting all the valuable screen time.

There's a wonderful scene about halfway through the film in which a teenage mutant boy `comes out' to his genuinely astonished parents, informing them that their `ordinary, average' child (whom they had just considered `highly gifted') has been harboring a deep dark secret within himself, a revelation that no parent would ever want to hear and no child would ever want to have to make. The reaction of both stunned disbelief and reluctant acceptance (`We still love you no matter what you are') on the part of the boy's family speaks to anyone who has had to face a similar situation in his own life. `X2' could use more scenes like this one to help the audience connect better with both the characters and the events taking place on screen. And it was scenes like this one that made the original `X-Men' soar as a movie, for that film really seemed to be able to zero in on universal aspects of human nature. `X2' doesn't do nearly as impressive a job in this regard.

Every so often, `X2' feels as if it too is getting ready to expound on one of its potentially intriguing themes - as when the President of the United States has to decide whether to take draconian action against what he believes may be a `terrorist' organization among the mutants - only to have the concern fizzle in a welter of action movie clichés. After all, what could be more pertinent, timely or relevant to today's world than the threat of terrorism and the potential for civil rights abuses arising from the fear it causes? Instead of making this premise the crux of their movie as they should have, the filmmakers drag all the characters over to some secret underground complex next to a snowbound lake to do battle with a pretty conventional villain and have them indulge in all the explosions, gun battles, kickboxing fight sequences etc. that are the standard accoutrements of any self-respecting modern day action film.

People seem to be enamored of `X2,' even more, perhaps, than they were of the original `X-Men.' I wish I could count myself among them. But as one who genuinely loved the original, I must say that I am less than enamored with this particular installment. I may be a minority dissenting voice in this regard, but I view `X2,' for all its special effects wizardry, as a disappointing missed opportunity, a film that fails to develop on a deeper level the great themes that were laid out for it in the original. I have my fingers crossed for `X-Men 3.'

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English | German | Italian | Spanish

Release Date:

2 May 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

X-2 See more »

Filming Locations:

Burlington, Ontario, Canada See more »


Box Office


$110,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$85,558,731, 4 May 2003

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS



Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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