As the ‘hype’-dust settles, Redbrick film writers deliver their verdict on one of the most highly anticipated comic book adaptations of the year, Deadpool.
Deadpool is pure unadulterated satirical comedy. It’s referential and it’s bonkers. It’s filthy and it’s deliciously unnecessarily violent. It lives and dies on the central character: Deadpool. The comic character that knows he lives in a comic book world allows the writers to go nuts taking pot shots at every aspect of pop culture. This film is the best interpretation of the character outside of the Deadpool comics. The only flaw is that perhaps it was restrained from being everything it could be, but that gives it more mass appeal. Ryan Reynolds makes Deadpool. He embodies the character to perfection. If you love Superhero movies you’ll love this, and if you’re sick of Superhero movies this is exactly the catharsis you’re looking for.
Fans have waited years for the ‘Merc with the Mouth’ to return to the silver screen, with his mouth unsewn and his origins story told right. Finally we’ve got what we want and it certainly doesn’t disappoint. Supported by hordes of fans in eager anticipation, it was no surprise that director Tim Miller has already secured a sequel before the film has even hit cinemas. The film begins its onslaught of hilarity the minute the 20th Century Fox credits end. As the anti-hero of the film, Deadpool not only gets to use his words to amuse the audience, but also to mock his enemies; whether they’re in the film or in the real world. There’s no doubt that this film is meta to the nines and Deadpool’s constant fourth wall breaks and references to current events and Reynolds’ past filmography, were perfect demonstrations of this.
Who would have thought that Ryan Reynolds would give the superhero genre the shot in the arm that it needed? Making up for lost time after years in development hell, Reynolds, first-time director Tim Miller and screenwriters Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (of Zombieland fame) let the jokes fly far and fast. Deadpool is a character (and a movie) that doesn’t care where the jokes come from – as long as they hit. There’s post-modern meta-humour on the state of the superhero franchise (on meeting Professor X: ‘McAvoy or Stewart? These timelines are so confusing!’) and lots of dick jokes. Whatever takes your fancy. Deadpool is the type of movie that’s certainly not going to win any awards and some of the characters are so under-baked the dough is practically raw (Negasonic Teenage Warhead’s mostly pointless X-Men cameo) but it’s the best fun you’ll have waiting for Guardians of the Galaxy 2. Meta as f*ck and don’t you love it.
Deadpool has had a long and troubled relationship with film – from the mouth-less merc to that buried test footage. However, the fans have prevailed and brought Deadpool back to our screens and can rest easy (or get pumped to DMX anthems) as this film definitely does the foul-mouthed, hyper-violent anti/superhero justice. Deadpool wants to be entertaining. The fourth wall is blown to pieces, the meta comic book references are funny and relevant, and the vulgar jokes come hard and fast (no pun intended). What really makes this film is Ryan Reynolds. This is his show. Funny, charming and engaging throughout, both masked and unmasked, he brings the energy to the character. There are notable turns from its supporting cast particularly T.J. Miller, Morena Baccarin and Ed Skrein but the film also features some slightly underdeveloped characters. Nevertheless, Tim Miller’s feature directorial debut has been a refreshing and unashamedly fun success.
Deadpool is a film that reaches out and grabs you by the throat. It demolishes the fourth wall, kicks it while it’s down, blasts it with a rocket launcher and then flips it the middle finger as it burns. Fans of Marvel will reap endless rewards from the sheer beauty of its merciless self-mockery, and even those who are unfamiliar with the franchise cannot possibly resist the unsettling charm of the filter-less Ryan Reynolds, and his perfectly cast counterpart Morena Baccarin. The film is endearing precisely because it shouldn’t be. Deadpool is everything that a superhero isn’t—he is obnoxious, outrageous, indecent, trigger-happy and unrepentant—and yet watching him strut nonchalantly through repeated vigilante rampages is such a wonderfully refreshing alternative to the self-righteous heroes of old that we leave the cinema questioning our own moral code. Though not for the faint-hearted, this movie is engaging to the very last expletive and horrendously inappropriate innuendo.