If you have at least one limb dipped in the salty sea of pop-culture, then you probably know that Deadpool is out, and that it appears to be rocking the box office. In addition to that, if you’ve seen any of its trailers, you probably know that it’s pitching a fundamentally different superhero film; a crude, snarky, ultraviolent R-rated one…. but you probably already knew that (I sure did).
In other words, we all knew Deadpool was going to be fun, I just wasn’t expecting how good it would be. It had terrific action, a likeable, charismatic lead, more enthralling, hilarious moments than I can count, and a surprising touch of humanity and good-naturedness that I was not anticipating.
Sweet Sweet Gore
The film throws us almost right into the action, with Deadpool constantly breaking both the fourth wall and bad guys’ skulls. I cannot overstate how gratuitous, bloody, and delightful the violence in this movie is portrayed. Deadpool puts bullets through henchmen’s heads with an almost childlike glee that is super infectious: I was grinning with delight as the he racked up an astronomical body count.
The film wants us to enjoy this ridiculous, stylized carnage. Ryan Reynolds injects loads of charisma into his performance of Deadpool; he pretty much never stops serving up silly and profane one-liners throughout the movie. The script here is packed with genuine comedy, which is pretty much constantly raunchy, but Reynolds brings a certain charm to his lines which makes me feel like he was somehow always meant to play Deadpool (shitty appearance in Wolverine: Origins notwithstanding). His chemistry with Morena Baccarin, who plays Deadpool’s girlfriend, is particularly remarkable, resulting in a nice little romantic subplot which I found to be surprisingly touching.
People Who Aren’t Ryan Reynolds
The supporting cast was pretty vibrant as well. Deadpool’s interactions with his shifty and sarcastic pal Weasel, the X-Men getting annoyed with Deadpool’s antics, and the two mutant villains are all excellent; the dialog zips by all with one eye winking towards the audience. While Deadpool’s friends and allies tend to stand out, I found that the lead antagonist, while played well enough by Ed Skrein, simply didn’t have a lot of interesting things to bring to the table. Former MMA fighter Gina Carano, who portrays the other villain, has her excellent fighting talent squandered by having her play a mostly passive role.
A Radioactive Spider?
Deadpool plays the plot fairly straight with a basic origin story, but the pacing gets a little chopped and shuffled. Our hero’s origin told through a couple of flashbacks, spliced between a series of gory action sequences. This results in a slightly bloated second act, where the scenes lose a bit of momentum due some emotionally heavy exposition amidst a film full of violent ass-kicking. However, the scenes were pretty integral for establishing Deadpool’s motivation, and since the dialog was both trim and peppered with funny jokes, I can hardly justify this complaint.
At the end of the day, there is nothing I can really dissect or discuss about Deadpool that is going to do it justice. It’s not a complicated movie, but it sure is an enjoyable one. In this day and age, it’s safe to say that comic book movies are good fun, but seldom do they play the hand they have been dealt so well. Deadpool is an enthralling comic book character, and in turn this movie captures that excitement and actively shares it with the audience.
So what did you think of Deadpool? Sound off in the comments.