Deadpool Returns to the Big Screen
Deadpool Review – From the moment the opening credits begin it’s clear that Deadpool is not your average superhero story. The foul-mouthed and violent Deadpool, aka Wade Wilson is an ex-special forces operative who undergoes an experiment to cure his cancer and is given accelerated healing powers. Unfortunately, Wilson is tricked and the plot of the film revolves around him getting revenge on the man who wronged him. Deadpool is so much more than its basic plot though and the film delights in entertaining and amusing audiences with quick wit, dark humour, bloody violence and plenty of references to the X-Men universe.
If Ryan Reynolds playing the infamous ‘Merc with a Mouth’ sounds familiar it’s because he already had one go at it in the not-so-stellar X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Thankfully though, the character is handled much better this time around and is much truer to the source material. Ryan Reynolds is excellent as Deadpool and inhabits the role so well its hard to imagine anyone else playing the brash red-suited anti-hero. His comedic timing and the obvious fun he is having portraying the character produces the charisma and screen presence the character deserves. The film has excellent comedic timing and most of the jokes hit their mark although a few do fall flat particularly in the middle section of the film.
For those tired of formulaic superhero films, Deadpool could be worth your time but for the most part it’s just good fun. The character consistently breaks the fourth wall and makes references to the audience as well as the X-Men universe the film takes place in. The most obvious connection is the appearance of Colossus played by newcomer Andre Tricoteux (now a gentle Russian giant rather than the character’s portrayal in X2) and a new character to the X-Men universe in Brianna Hildebrand’s Negasonic Teenage Warhead, a name that fits in perfectly with the off-the-wall treatment of the movie. Colossus is a good foil to Deadpool’s sharp tongue but Warhead comes off better as she plays the sullen teenager to good effect. Deadpool isn’t afraid to make fun of itself, the X-Men and the superhero genre. Writers Rhet Reese and Paul Wernick litter the film with references to the ridiculousness of the situations Deadpool finds himself in and the funniest ones involve commenting on actors James McAvoy, Patrick Stewart and Hugh Jackman. There are also plenty of amusing references to Reynolds’ previous superhero roles.
Other cast members include Morena Baccarin as Wilson’s girlfriend, Vanessa and T.J. Miller as Weasel, a bartender and friend to Wilson. Miller has some great one liners in the film and its nice to get some comic relief from someone other than Deadpool after a while. Meanwhile, Baccarin’s Vanessa is just as likeable and feisty as her partner Wilson although her character quickly devolves into a standard rescue mission for Deadpool. The story moves along at a nice pace simultaneously telling the mercenary’s origin story and showing Wilson’s hunt for Ajax, the villain of the piece. This method works well and never drags because Wilson’s wit and humour exist long before he puts on the suit. Ed Skrein is menacing as the villain but he doesn’t have too much to do although his scenes during Deadpool’s experiment were well done and make him into a formidable foe for Deadpool to face. A nod should also be given to the action pieces of the film which are well choreographed and play off the humour nicely.
Overall, Deadpool is a funny, violent and self-aware film. It treats its audience with respect and entertains them with bloody action pieces, smart, well written humour and by frequently breaking the fourth wall to remind you that what you’re watching is as ridiculous as it seems. Although not every joke works and despite a fairly underwhelming plot, Deadpool gets enough right and perhaps most importantly gives the fans of Deadpool the incarnation of the character they really wanted to see all along.