Official Film Synopsis: “Based upon Marvel Comics’ most unconventional anti-hero, DEADPOOL tells the origin story of former Special Forces operative turned mercenary Wade Wilson, who after being subjected to a rogue experiment that leaves him with accelerated healing powers, adopts the alter ego Deadpool. Armed with his new abilities and a dark, twisted sense of humor, Deadpool hunts down the man who nearly destroyed his life.”
A lot of reviews for this movie are going to start out with something to the effect of, “I’m not a Deadpool fan but…” and then they’ll proceed to tell you why the movie is still great anyway even if you don’t care about the character. Those people are self-absorbed assclowns who have no business writing “reviews”. Now, you’re probably saying to yourself, “I thought 4LN was trying to be less negative than other websites? Didn’t you write a whole thing about how you were changing and being more positive?” Yes, we did do that, (in fact, I personally wrote that) and we are being more positive… about the artistic expressions we discuss. HOWEVER, it’s not artistic to tell people you liked something in spite of itself so anyone who does that has earned the honorable title of “assclown”. (I’ve gotten completely off track, and I apologize.)
I personally love Deadpool. Always have. I love that he’s flippant and self-aware. I love that he breaks the fourth wall. I love that he irritates the shit out of every single other character he interacts with. People will throw around words like “gimmicky” or “shtick” in an effort to degrade Deadpool, but what they seem to be too dim to understand is that these are natural traits of the character. He’s supposed to have a shtick, and a gimmick. HE DOES IT ON PURPOSE. You can’t insult him for being exactly what he wants to be. (Somehow this became an In Defense of Deadpool article and I honestly can’t tell you how that happened.)
Ok, so Deadpool The Movie… Well, it’s f—ing hilarious. That thing the assclowns said is actually half right. You don’t need to like, or even be familiar with, Deadpool in order to laugh hysterically at the movie. The jokes even come so fast that you’ll want to see it a second time just so you can try to catch what you missed the first time around. Ryan Reynolds just IS Wade Wilson/Deadpool, much in the same was Robert Downey Jr. IS Tony Stark. You just know that in some ways he’s not even acting, he’s just being himself and the essence of Deadpool is present because he’s naturally sarcastic and funny. The humor of the film doesn’t rest squarely on Reynolds’ strong, sexy shoulders though. There are plenty of other characters that share in the comedy. The most contributing support comes from TJ Miller, playing Wade’s BFF Weasel. Their chemistry is perfect and Miller brilliantly plays off of Reynolds’ sarcasm and serves it right back.
Characters like Colossus (played by Stefan Kapicic) and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (played by Brianna Hildebrand), show up and also add to the comedy mix. But mostly because they play straight next to Deadpool’s lack of seriousness. Colossus is sort-of Drax like, in that he’s more of a noble-ish warrior and he doesn’t quite get everything Deadpool is throwing at him. Negasonic is just a typical, millennial, teenage girl and she doesn’t really have time for his crap, but she’s basically Colossus’ protege so she’s stuck. There’s also the blind, black lady that Deadpool is roommates with, Blind Al. She’s fantastic because the character makes no sense being blended in with the rest of them but she works so great, and her scenes are absolutely hilarious.
The villains Ajax and Angel Dust are played by Ed Skrein and Gina Carano. Ajax is responsible for turning Wade into Deadpool, and Angel Dust is his muscle. They are both very good and pose the “good guys” a genuine threat.
One of the best things about the film is the chemistry between Reynolds and Morena Baccarin as his girlfriend, Vanessa. She’s not just eye-candy, or some damsel in distress. (I mean, she is nice to look at, but she’s not JUST that.) She holds her own in every scene she shares with Wade/Deadpool, and doesn’t just concede all rights to humor away to him. She participates. And she’s damn funny. I was very impressed with how they were able to pull of the romantic dynamic without making it dull and sappy, because it works so well.
This is an “origin” story for Deadpool, in the sense that X-Men: Days of Future Past reset the timeline so the abomination formerly known as “Deadpool” in the X-Men Origins: Wolverine movie is irrelevant. It’s also not the same origin that is depicted in the comics but that really doesn’t matter. The plot is a little basic and somewhat predictable, but that’s on purpose. It scales back the complexity for the sake of putting more emphasis on the humor and action.
The film is directed by Tim Miller, and it’s his first time in the director’s chair for a major motion picture, but he previously worked on Scott Pilgrim vs. The World as the Creative Supervisor, and that film is an undisputed visual effects juggernaut, so yeah, the guy know what he’s doing.
I’ve gone on and on about how funny Deadpool is, but I should explain that it’s really equal parts a comedy and an action film, with a sneaky love story to hold it all together. Like I mentioned previously though, it’s not sappy or anything like that at all. The relationship between Wade and Vanessa actually feels much more realistic and natural than most movie couples. I also appreciated how sincere the film felt when Wade was diagnosed with cancer, which is the motivation for him to undergo Ajax’s experiments in order to save his life. He’s not trying to save himself for him, he’s saving himself for her. They managed to capture a very genuine sense of selfless survival, which can be rare for movies at this level. They don’t take much seriously, but the things they do, they handle very well.
One thing that really stood out to me was the use of music in the film. At different times they play Wham!, Salt-n-Pepa, DMX, etc. The list of awkwardly perfect songs to accompany the film goes on and on. This is a trend that I feel Guardians of the Galaxy started way back when they released the first trailer featuring “Hooked on a Feeling”, and then used all those classic pop and rock songs throughout the film and on the soundtrack. Then last year, Kingsman: The Secret Service used Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “Freebird” during that notoriously violent church shoot-out scene, and the opening of the movie featured “Money for Nothing”, by Dire Straights. I like this new trend. It’s a clever and useful tool for making intense moments feel a little lighter.
Also, as you’ve been hearing, no, this movie is not for kids. It’s very much a film for mature audiences, so just because little Jake or darling Madison (those were then most popular baby names of 2002, I googled it) loves all the other superhero movies you’ve taken them to doesn’t mean you should take them to this. If you wouldn’t let them watch The Hangover, or Game of Thrones, then Deadpool is a no-go also. Buy them a ticket to see Zoolander 2 while you go see Deadpool. I’m sure they did something terrible enough to deserve that… (Real talk: I didn’t wanna make that joke, but it just came so easily.)
Deadpool is a great movie. It’s exciting, and funny, and intense, and funny some more, and then continuously funny all the way to the very end. Speaking of, make sure you stay through the credits if you want to see the scene at the very end, because there is one.
The film also serves to prove a point that I have been making for years, which is that Ryan Reynolds is never the reason movies he’s in are bad. See, Green Lantern was not a critical success, but I’ve always maintained that it wasn’t for Reynolds’ lack of trying. He, Mark Strong as Sinestro, and (Ryan’s now wife) Blake Lively as Carol Ferris are really the only things that work about that movie. Then there’s the aforementioned Wolverine movie, which is where he first played Wade Wilson, and was terrific at it. Again, as much of a mess as that movie was, and as bad as they f—ed up Deadpool, his performance as Wade was spot-on and perfect. I’m 100% willing to overlook that misstep because without it we may not have gotten this magnificent piece of bloody, irreverent cinema.
So, go see Deadpool. You’re gonna love it. (Betty White does, and do you think you’re better than Betty f—ing White?) It’s incredibly funny, and very self-aware. Hell, it’s already setting records and it hasn’t even been out for a full 24 hours. Rarely does a movie like this come along, and so it’s important that if you love it, you get out and support it because we want them to keep making fun, R-rated comic book movies for us grown-ups to enjoy. (Oh, also, Stan Lee does have a cameo in this and it’s HIS BEST ONE YET. Seriously.)