Review: Deadpool – Juvenile superhero for adults only

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DeadpoolDeadpool fans rejoice, after 25 years your film is finally here and it’s every bit as insolent and insane as you wanted. If, like me, you’re not a Deadpool comic book fan, I still predict you’re going to enjoy the heck out of this movie, even if it’s a reluctant guilty pleasure. This flick is undeniably funny and has some awesome cool action sequences that are sure to win you over.

For the uninitiated, Deadpool was originally created in 1991 by comic book writer Fabian Nicieza and artist Rob Liefeld. The character has changed quite a bit over the years, with the input of multiple authors and artisans, morphing from a straight-up villain into the irredeemable “merc with a mouth” antihero that his fervent fans love today.

The character is an amalgamation of Marvel’s Spider-Man, Wolverine and Punisher, and DC Comics’ Deathstroke mercenary; and this is his second rendition on the big screen (the first being in the universally panned X-Men Origins: Wolverine in 2009.) In the new film his origin is completely redone, and imaginative fans will tell you this is due to the warped timelines created in the X-Men: Days of Future Past movie (a theory that works for me.) In fact, this new film is considered to be a part of the X-Men film franchise.

The movie begins with one of the coolest and funniest opening credit sequences I’ve ever seen, a bullet time interior view of a car crash that has our (anti)hero whupping on the bad guys while irreverent titles depicting archetypical film roles (instead of actual actor names) flow around the wreckage. Right upfront this sets the fun tongue-in-cheek tone of what’s to come.

We’re then flashed back to the events leading up to said conflagration, including the new origin of Deadpool, AKA Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds.) Along the way we meet the villains Ajax (Ed Skrein), a mad scientist who cannot feel pain, and Angel Dust (Gina Carano), who is a sexy, super-strong and ultra-durable vixen; they are also the ones responsible for making Deadpool the ‘monster’ that he is.

DeadpoolAjax kidnaps Wade’s fiancée, Vanessa (Morena Baccarin, whom you know as Inara from Firefly), but with the help of his friend, Weasel (T.J. Miller), and the X-Men Colossus (Stefan Kapicic) and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand), Deadpool is out to save his girl and dispense his unorthodox brand of justice.

The acting all around is sufficient for this type of film and this is definitely the part that Ryan Reynolds was born to play. Who knows if it is really him behind the mask most of the time, nevertheless he’s appealingly obnoxious. (Or is it obnoxiously appealing?) I also really liked Hildebrand as Negasonic Teenage Warhead (named after the Monster Magnet song.) Comedian T.J. Miller basically plays T.J. Miller, for what that’s worth.

Director Tim Miller (as far as I know he’s no relation to T.J.) makes his feature directorial debut with Deadpool and he has done a great job of mashing up amazing action sequences with the hilarious script by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick of Zombieland fame. I’m not a huge fan of crude and disgusting locker-room humor, but these guys still managed to win me over.

Kids are going to be nuts wanting to see this film, but keep in mind that Deadpool earns its R-rating several times over with unabashed and extreme adult material. Against my better judgement, I liked this movie a lot more than I ever expected to and actually can’t wait to see it again. Grade: 8/10

Photos © 2016 Twentieth Century Fox

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About the author

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Bob Leeper

Bob Leeper is the co-owner and manager of "Arizona’s Pop Culture and Alternative Art Network," Evermore Nevermore. He is the co-creator of the pop culture events Steampunk Street and ENCREDICON, and is a member of the Phoenix Film Critics Society. He also curates the Facebook fan site The Arizona Cave – AZ Fans of Edgar Rice Burroughs, and is one of the few brave and bold fans of Jar Jar Binks.

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