Ryan Reynolds hit comedic gold and found a rightful home for his brand of humour with Deadpool. Irreverend hilarity meeting a comic book hero in the same vein made Deadpool the right and, probably, the only choice that would work for the actor. And by golly, the amount of work put into the film had us giddy when it received the well-deserved praise it did, even though the execs and powers that be never really coddled the film with the pecuniary love it needed.
Now with the success of Deadpool under the proverbial belt, it was sequel time, with bigger budgets and targets. Deadpool 2‘s advertising campaign wasn’t as hilarious as the first (although seeing Reynolds reveal himself on what seemed to be a K-Pop show was something to behold), but nevertheless, the moment of truth was well on its way. Not even Disney could (fully) put a wrench in the works. There was a Disney joke in the Deadpool 2 film before it was pulled for being too crude. So there is that…
Now we have the semblance of the beginning of an X-Force, enough cameos to shake a fire fist at, and, of course, Domino. Zazie Beetz is just… yeah. Containing my lustful excitement… there. Suppressed.
But given the churnings betwixt the marriage between Disney and Marvel and the wedding interrupter Comcast, what does this say for a Deadpool 3. Is 2 even strong enough to build on? Let’s get into it. Maximum Effort.
The Fourth Wall is made of plaster and has a moon-sized gloryhole
What now seems to be a signature motif for a Deadpool movie, where we begin at a crazy part of the story to then backtrack to moments earlier, We open up on Wade Wilson lying across drums of flammable liquid ready to go up in great balls of fire. To outdo Logan’s death and Hugh Jackman copping out of starring in a Deadpool/Wolverine crossover.
We learn that Wade since his need for revenge got satisfied in the first film, lived a pretty awesome globetrotting life, totally obliterating ethnic and foreign-flavoured criminals of the worlds most feared organisations from the Italian mob to the Yakuza. But at home, he had a chill life with Morena Baccarin’s Copycat, until that one contract goes awry when a failed assassination target comes to Wade’s front door. In an attempt to kill Wade, Copycat gets caught in the crossfire. Revenge is what I then thought would be the theme of this film. Can’t go wrong with revenge. But as it turns out, Deadpool gets that pretty quickly after her murder, and it was achieved in the most love-hurt type of way that’ll sure have the lovers crooning.
Now somewhat without purpose, the surreal cryptic messages from Copycat beyond the grave leads Deadpool to finally take up Colossus’ offer to become an honorary member of the X-Men. It’s not soon after they get their first mission to deal with a Mutant crisis that Deadpool royally Deadpools his way into disaster. A kid – Fire Fist (which sounds like a chronic masturbation problem) – begins pyro-kinetically destroying shit in front of his B-list version of an Xavier Institute. The only difference being that this institution, this particularly chubby kid, probably stricken with diabetes, is being abused here. So Deadpool, finding this out, kills one of the staff but just misses the headmaster. So now both Deadpool and Fire Fist are off to prison.
But Fire Fist is going to have more of a problem than being someone’s prison bitch. Cable. Who travelled the breadth of time and space for one reason, to kill the kid.
Apparently, the events in the present lead to Fire Fist becoming a murdering psychopath in the future which leads to the death of bothering his wife and child. So Cable is about to put things right. Even if it means breaking into a max security black site Mutant prison and putting a Coke can-sized hole in the middle of the teen’s head.
Now Copycat’s cryptic ethereal messages from the afterlife takes on new meaning for Deadpool, so the Merc With A Mouth, with the help of a group of merry gifted team, decides to put it on the line to save the soul of a kid precariously close to becoming a villain all the while having to deal with a superbly effective Cable and high-wind speeds.
Humour and Emotion
Now, this was something that came to my attention after leaving the cinema, rather than during my watching of it. There are nice pockets of emotive narrative that takes place in Deadpool 2, but it is moments that aren’t stark or conflicting with the action or the humour. This could not have been an easy feat. For that, all due praise to the team for this one. They managed to merge the funny and the heart string melodies in a way that was like peanut butter and jelly. The store-bought kind, but nevertheless, it went down a treat.
the is as you would expect it. A lot of low brow, with a little bit from the top shelves, and those few moments where you were kinda grossed out and embarrassed with yourself for laughing because you thought you had reached a certain level of maturity, by now. Obviously, that didn’t happen.
The kind of humour I was talking about that made me embarrassed to laugh – one of them is her. After seeing the genitalia (adult word by cock and balls), Deadpool says “Scoutmaster Kevin?” British people famously don’t have a sense of humour, as my gaff rung louder in the cinema than everyone. But the more I thought about it, the context and the uttering of two words alluded to sexual abuse of a minor. Talk of Fire Fist being abused also came up, which at first felt like it alluded to the sexual variety. Flashback scenes however just insinuated your everyday ol’ Abu Ghraib-esque Mutant torture sessions.
Then, of course, Reynolds upped the anti from the first film, where baby hands and masturbation existed in the same arena, which oddly didn’t lead to a call to some regulation board. This time, Deadpool literally gets ripped in half by the Juggernaut, which leads to the half below his torso to grow back later down the line. So, essentially one-half human adult torso, the other half – toddler dick and legs. Which we all got to see vividly when he did a disturbing take on Sharon Stone’s infamous leg-crossing scene from Basic Instinct.
It all begged the question: how much is too much? By all means, I’m not a fuddy-duddy (oh my god, I just said fuddy-duddy), but it didn’t stop me from shaking my head in shame. Who’s idea was then?
Cable and Domino
There were doubts. And somewhere expressed internally by myself. And I am glad when I was proven absolutely wrong. Josh Brolin is Cable. The grumpy, no-nonsense disposition with the highest level of badassery cannot be scoffed at (it could be, but to your own peril) – it all speaks to a very in-tune casting team.
And we cannot overlook by any means overlook how awesome Zazie Beetz Domino is, dimpled-smiles and all. Zazie absolutely owns the role, with her sultry yet chilled and unperturbed demeanour is a great contrast to the haphazard devil-may-care attitude of Deadpool that makes a situation way worse before it makes it better. And the fact her superpower is literally Luck, things seem to work out effortlessly for the bad-ass assassin. Her design as well was awesome; using the birthmark/vitiligo mark around her eye was a nice touch.
With a bigger budget following the success of Deadpool 2, we knew this moment was coming. Cameos. A lot more. Some, however, were more tongue-in-cheek, others were a surprise. Few still we totally missed until later.
There were instances of recorded footage, where for example Deadpool is at the Xavier Institute commenting on yet again an empty building bereft of any sign of the X-Men save Negasonic Teenage Warhead and Colossus, only for the camera to reveal the entire X-Men team from X-Men First Class swiftly closing the door to not have to deal with the literal walking cancer of the Marvel-verse.
But the surprise cameo comes when Deadpool assembles his rag-tag team of X-Force hopefuls. One member of the team is the Vanisher, who’s literally invisible. It is when parachuting down to intercept the prison convoy to spring the Fire Fist kid does the vanisher get tangled in overhead electrical wires and brings us to a shocking revelation, the Vanisher is played by Brad Pitt. Damn. Gone but not forgotten.
Other instances of cameos in the post-credit scenes had Deadpool using Cable’s tech to traverse the breadth of multiple timelines and dimensions, where he kills the first absurd version of Deadpool from X-Men Origins: Wolverine and Ryan Reynold’s over a script of Green Lantern.
The one cameo we did miss was the fact the hill-billy on the back of the truck when Cable arrives to our present time was actually Star Trek: Discovery‘s Anthony Rapp. And kudos for them keeping these bigger cameos under wraps. As opposed to this review, we actually like to be surprised and avoid spoilers from time-to-time too.
Green Lantern + Wolverine
This is our hope that Deadpool 2 will signal the end to references of Green Lantern and Wolverine. It was a great run, mind you, but it’s time they are put our to pasture. From the musical figurine that immortalised the last moments of Logan being impaled by a tree, to Green Lantern and Ryan Reynolds shoddy choice of characters in comic book films (RIPD, Blade 3…) we’ve pretty explored how deep the joke hole goes. So any further references could take a stale turn if the writer’s room don’t put these references to bed. It wasn’t just in the film and post-credit scenes. It was in the promo material too. So it’s easy to become innundated with it all. And DC Comics trying to join in on the hype did more to hurt than help (themselves anyway):
Hey @VancityReynolds, caught your new @deadpoolmovie trailer. Never forget – before you became a @Marvel character, you were a part of the @DCComics universe. #TeenTitansGOMovie pic.twitter.com/vmrBms0I8h
— Teen Titans GO Movie (@TeenTitansMovie) April 20, 2018
Well, if we’d used a NuvaRing™️ in the first place, we wouldn’t be in this mess. #deadpool2
— Ryan Reynolds (@VancityReynolds) May 19, 2018
Nevertheless, they should now be retired to that side of the no-reference-to-be-made-to column, that is if there will be a Ryan Reynolds-led DP3 or X-Force film in the future.
You’ll often hear me bitch about trailers not being a true reflection of a completed film. I think this sentiment should not become void just because it’s a Deadpool movie, right? Well, hear me out. There were jokes that were in the trailer that were high-chuckle worthy, that then were exchanged for other jokes that weren’t as impactful in the actual film.
It works in some places, but a discernable few felt like they led with the strongest jokes in the promo material but then had us listening to dubstep (which is a joke in and of itself) in its stead in the film. I’d have hated to be an editor on Deadpool 2. Sifting through the various versions of various jokes for various edits. But it does make for renewed interest in watching I bet come outtakes and Blu-Ray time.
Best CGI fight ever
Well, any pondering to where an increase in budget went in Deadpool 2 is with the bringing Colossus and the infamous Jugganaut clashing on screen. Jugganaut’s design was pretty on point, and a civil-Russian taking a dirty fight move straight from Deadpool’s playbook shows how corruptibly viral and awesome the Merc with A Mouth is.
So what are we left with. Negasonic has a girlfriend, but not much else. She got hit once I believe. The introduction of time travel (dangerous territory for any film narrative [unless your Christopher Nolan or James Cameron]). Dopinder now has a thirst for blood. Val, ha, love that old blind lady. X-Force – Cable and Domino! Deadpool 2 was a great watch. A surprising functional narrative held the humour and action together, and the laughter and chunky-bites of emotive-driven narrative made for an interesting combo. Like sweet and salty popcorn. Which is also what I had.
A few jokes didn’t land as much, but compared to everything else, it was a good outing. But I understand why some critics say this film was not better than the first. Which I honestly chalk up to the novelty of the first Deadpool movie, and the fact that revenge films will always be sexier than a saviour-type film. Shows us why we as humans suck. But I dare you to mention the last time you had that much fun and humour watching a superhero film? If you say Thor or Guardians of The Galaxy Vol. 2, I will take a dump in your mealy mouth. I don’t care how many times James Gunn compliments the success of Deadpool 2, we hope he’s taking his current writing of the next GoTG 3 seriously.
In any case, it was a great outing. Although I did spend time try to figure out what scene unfortunately led to this. Was there a remembrance in the credits? I may have missed it if there was…