There is finally a cure for “Avengers” fatigue. For those who have reached a saturation point of bloated blockbuster superhero movies, “Deadpool 2” returns as the foul, filthy and funny alternative. This raunchy satire is laugh out loud funny as it parodies those bloated comic book movies while venturing not that far from the formula it mocks.
It’s somewhat interesting that silly fantasy comic books have been transformed into gloomy and somber action dramas. Too many superheroes today are moody, conflicted and unloved. While establishing their self-importance, gaps are filled with non-stop overpowering CGI action. Not sure how comics take themselves so very seriously.
Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) is kind of an anti-hero. Dressed as Spider-Man’s evil twin, he’s an angry and belligerent sociopath. Not really a proponent of truth, justice and the American way, the guy flippantly rattles off crude one-liners, chops off limbs of thugs without thinking twice and somehow keeps his heart in the right place.
Directed by former stuntman David Leitch (“Atomic Blonde,” “John Wick”) and filmed in Vancouver, the shock and awe come less from pyrotechnics and more from words and actions. After a five to eight-minute action scene, opening credits include “Cinematography by Blind Al” and “Directed by “Guys who killed the dog in John Wick.”
Narration announces this as a family film, with the same kind of murder as in “Bambi,” “Lion King,” and so many others Disney features. Deadpool confronts Cable (Josh Brolin), the man from the future, “You’re so dark, are you sure you’re not the DC Universe?” Then, “Give me your best shot, One-eyed Willie (from Brolin’s “The Goonies”).
Sure, there are the requisite car chases, choreographed fights and massive urban destruction, but the one-liners never stop. Deadpool responds to his recent heroics with, “Mission accomplished in a George W. Bush kind of way.” When two gigantic monsters prepare to attack each other, he announces, “Here comes a big CGI fight!”
Not to give away all the zingers, as there are dozens, be sure to wear your best hearing aids to catch as many as you can. Written by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick and Ryan Reynolds, the plot, which involves a kid (Julian Dennison) who may grow up to become the next Adolph Hitler. However, the plot is not as important as the verbal jousts.
Domino (Zazie Beetz) returns to assist Deadpool, as he asks her, “What are you, the black Black Widow?” The inside joke is that Domino is white in the comics while Beetz is black. And, Marvel’s Black Widow is played by Reynold’s ex-wife Scarlett Johanssen, who is also white. It’s one thing to say Deadpool breaks all the rules of the superhero genre, but that’s not necessarily true. He just has his own set of rules, some of which he makes up as he goes along.
Brad Pitt had planned to play Cable but canceled due to scheduling conflicts, so he “appears” in the credits as “The Vanisher,” the invisible man that has no lines in the script. The supporting cast also includes Morena Baccarin as Deadpool’s lover Vanessa, Bill Skarsgard, T.J. Miller, Terry Crews and Rob Delaney, who has no superpowers, but becomes part of the team because he took time to answer the ad.
“Deadpool 2” is 119 minutes and rated R for just about every possible reason. Too often, we see movies that substitute raunchy dialog for wit and humor. “Deadpool” is vulgar and bawdy, but outrageously funny and entertaining, especially if you have a warped sense of humor. We like being in on the joke, even if the joke is really on us.
It’s difficult to recommend a movie filled with vulgarity, torture, mutilations and other mayhem, but Deadpool summarizes it best, “So, from our family to yours, keep your pants dry, your dreams wet and remember hugs, not drugs.” Ugh!
Ron’s Rating: A-
Leigh’s Rating: B