I don’t want to call this a review of Deadpool, even though it’s titled “Review: Deadpool.” That’s just SEO I gotta put up there to get the website hits. I want to call it a post-coital smoke break after an exceptionally satisfying movie orgasm, because
Forgive any uncouth language in this post… The R-rated film is awash in filthy language, images, violence, sex, and just about everything you’d expect in a Deadpool movie. Which turns out to be incredibly appropriate. But it’s also a little contagious. I’ll try to keep it together for the rest of the article. Sorry, Mom.
First, the official nitty gritty. Deadpool is a Marvel Enterprises/20th Century Fox film written by writing team Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (Zombieland, GI Joe: Retaliation) and directed by Tim Miller in his freshman turn at directing (he did direct the opening sequence of Thor: The Dark World, though). Miller’s background is animation — for which he’d been nominated for an Oscar for, and it shows throughout the movie, as he consistently finds unique angles and sequences that traditional through-the-lens directors might never have considered.
Quick spoiler-free synopsis. Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is a low-budget mercenary with a smart-ass mouth and a heart of gold. He falls in love with a beautiful just-as-smart-mouthed hooker, played by Morena Baccarin (Firefly, V). After a year of incredible sex, most of which we get to see in a wonderful montage that includes… well… I won’t look at anal sex the same way ever again, they decide to get married. Baccarin has never looked sexier or nakeder, and this movie makes me want to watch Firefly again, muttering “I’ll be in my bunk” with a fresh set of naughty images already queued up. Oh, uh… back to the review. Sorry, Mom.
Cue the terminal cancer (not a spoiler, it’s in the trailers!). Cue the bad guys with the ability to turn men into super-cancerless-men. Cue everything going sideways. Cue Wilson’s revenge-plot origin story, and the requisite montage with how he gets his name, costume, and trail to the villain. Toss in a blind woman, several naked women, a sassy sidekick, the X-Men (well, two of them), the funniest fight scene — maybe ever — and an extensive discussion about Ikea’s product line, and you’ve got yourself one hell of a movie.
Deadpool is first of all funny, smart, and irreverent — to everything. The opening credits themselves are hilarious. When Wilson visits X-Men mansion, he says “Why are there only two of you here? It’s as though the studio was too cheap to hire more actors.” At every turn there’s a crack, a joke, a visual gag or just straight slapstick hijinx kicked up to superhero levels. Reynolds, who’s always shown a knack for the smart-ass retort, is perfectly cast, and its clear this is as much the role he was born to play as Wolverine is the role Hugh Jackman should be forced to play until his dying days. They break the fourth wall shamelessly, and that works in this film’s favor every time.
Initial box office returns say that Deadpool is on track to be the biggest R-rated movie of all time: it’s certainly rocketing that way with a huge opening. As far as this reporter is concerned, it earned every dollar of it. This goes on my shortlist of favorite Marvel movies, favorite Ryan Reynolds movies, and hell, favorite movies period. Do yourself a favor. Find a friend who’s having a shit day and take them to see this film. You’ll both be glad you did.