It’s about damn time. Walking out of the theatre from seeing Deadpool, I was 100% positive about two things: I’d been correct in my belief that Ryan Reynolds was the only one who could bring this character to life, and Deadpool is absolutely one of the most bat-shit crazy fun films I’ve ever seen. For most fans of the Merc with a Mouth, the character of Deadpool is one we’ve been waiting to see on the screen for over two decades. It’s a wait that has been frustrating as hell, but ultimately worth the wait. Both the film’s humor and violence are balls-out insane (both figuratively and literally), and the movie is ultimately better because of it. While the main plot is fairly simplistic, it actually helps more than it hurts, avoiding the dozens of subplots that many action movies these days try to shove in. While not perfect by any means, Deadpool is a fantastic entry into the superhero film world. Just don’t let him hear you use the word “superhero.”
For a more in-depth look, read on…..
I’ll be honest, when I heard that Deadpool would be included in the film X-Men Origins: Wolverine, I was giddy. When they announced that Ryan Reynolds had been cast as the Merc with a Mouth, I thought it was brilliant casting. And then, the movie came out. I’ll spare you the memories of what a travesty of a film it ended up being, but nothing was quite as awful and unforgivable as what they did with the character of Deadpool.
Over the last 10-15 years, the best Marvel Films have been the ones handled directly by Marvel Studios. Characters like the X-Men, Spider-Man, Punisher, Daredevil, and more were all handled by different studios respectively. While there have been occasional breaks from the mediocrity like Blade, X-Men: First Class and The Wolverine, the majority of Marvel comic-based films produced by anyone other than Marvel Studios has ranged from lukewarm to downright awful. And that’s putting it pretty gently, as some of them have been ridiculously horrible (I’m looking at you Fantastic Four. Yes, all three of you. And you too, Ghost Rider). So, with the rights to the character not in control of Marvel Studios, getting a decent Deadpool movie seemed like something that just wasn’t meant to be.
In 2011, movement progessed as director Tim Miller was brought on board. Then came word in 2012 that some VFX test footage had been recorded using Reynolds in character and yet, still the film was never green lit. Then, in 2014, that very test footage leaked to the public during the San Diego Comic Con, and within weeks, the Deadpool film was officially announced due to the heavy praise the test footage garnered from both fans and critics alike. Thankfully, the finished film is the film we’ve been waiting for.
I truly believe this movie needs to be seen by you, in the theatre, and so to that end, I’m going to avoid spoilers as much as possible. The majority of the story is fairly well known at this point, but for those of you who don’t know, here’s a quick refresher. Wade Wilson (Reynolds) is a former special forces operative who meets and falls in love with a woman named Vanessa Carlysle (Morena Baccarin), but is later diagnosed in the late stages of cancer. In an effort to cure his cancer and spare Vanessa the death coming for him, he subjects himself to an experiment from an organization who state that not only can they cure his cancer, but that he can have abilities most men only dream of. The experimentation is more torture than anything else, and the resulting success leaves him with accelerated healing powers (thus curing his cancer) with the side effect of horribly disfiguring the skin over his entire body. Thus begins a journey of relentless hunting of those who subjected him to the experiment, in the hopes of finding a cure for the side effects, which have left him ashamed to face Vanessa and reveal his new self.
There are a few things that prevent Deadpool from being perfect. The overall story and plot, as mentioned before, are fairly simple and formulaic. Luckily the humor and action make up for that in spades, so it’s not something to pick at that much. These films still haven’t figured out how to properly handle a villain, as neither Ed Skrein nor Gina Carano (as Ajax and Angel Dust respectively) are given much in terms of motivation and story, except being typical villains who hit hard or fight well. While they do excel at that aspect of the characters, it’s still an instance where they could be replaced with plenty of other villains and the results would be the same, which is a shame as all of the characters in the film do have decent chemistry with each other. The characters of Blind Al and Weasel are great comic relief, but you almost wish they were used more. And Colossus and Negasonic Teenage Warhead are used well, in the absence of any of the more well-known X-Men (a fact not unnoticed by Deadpool himself).
In the end, the small nitpick problems that some people may have, are pretty irrelevant when compared to all the craziness happening on-screen. The film is chock full to the brim of easter eggs and one-liners, so much that I’d have happily sat through another 10-15 minutes of movie just to see all the riffing going on. The opening credits alone garnered laughs in our screening, and it’s just one example of how well the film knows both its character and its audience, and it worked perfectly. I hope you all take the time to check it out when it opens in theaters on February 12th. You won’t regret it.
4th Wall Breakage: 5
Overall: 5 Nerdskulls
Watch the trailer here:
Deadpool opens nationwide on Friday, February 12, 2016.
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