Deadpool is not your normal superhero movie. It’s a 15, for one thing. Warning: the amount of blood and gore certainly justifies that!
It’s also more juvenile and cheeky (read: crude) than most. I’ve seen this as a criticism in many reviews, but although it’s not the most enjoyable thing about the film, it doesn’t mar it as much as many have said. These jokes are a presence in the movie but don’t really take away from everything else great that’s going on.
And what’s going on is that Ryan Reynolds, People’s Sexiest Man Alive in 2010 as meta-referenced in the movie, plays Wade Wilson. Wilson becomes extremely un-handsome when he gets terminal cancer in his liver, lungs, prostrate and brain and is tempted into an underground lab where he is promised he will be cured and turned into a superhero. But, as he later finds out, it’s more like super slave…
That’s a pretty dark synopsis and it’s a pretty dark film, but the daring humour carries it the whole way through. You’re sold right from the start when the opening titles roll over a slow motion crash/fight and instead of any actor’s name you get stuff like “God’s Perfect Idiot” or “Moody Teen”. This both sets the scene and makes fun of the character tropes you get in most mainstream movies nowadays.
The fourth wall moments with Ryan Reynolds are also wonderful. Think Ferris Bueller (you’ll get the reference when you see it, and it’s worth waiting for…) Needless to say, Reynolds is just fantastic – both charming and biting – throughout. Thank goodness he stuck with it through 11 years of production stagnation.
The two X-Men, Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (aforementioned moody teen), are also highlights. From the meta jokes about why there’s only ever two of them seen around the huge Xavier School for Gifted Youngsters for budgetary reasons, to Colossus’ prudeness and flinching from bad language and breasts, they bring action and comedy alike.
And the villains are surprisingly spot on too, with “British Villain” Ajax/Francis (Ed Skrein) oozing sleaze – but they are less conventional with the way Deadpool laughs at them, giving them less earnestness than most stereotypical villains.
Oh, and the music fits perfectly too. Deadpool swinging his legs off a bridge to Salt-N-Pepa’s Shoop sums it up well, as does the opening Angel Of The Morning to slow-mo car flip.
If you’re not a fan of the usual superhero fare, Deadpool could be your way into Marvel. Less blockbuster, more mocking and bluster.