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“Deadpool” is much more than a superhero movie. It is much more than a Marvel film. It is much more than a funny and bloody joyride from start to finish. “Deadpool” isn’t a cash-grab to try and compete with the already extensive Marvel Cinematic Universe. At its core, “Deadpool” is something fans have been desperately waiting for since the first film adaptation from the comic book stories.
Deadpool is wholeheartedly a movie for its fans.
From the clever jokes that capture the essence of the titular character to the feel of the film itself, “Deadpool” is movie that will please audiences. The success is particularly impressive given that it barely got the green light because of a last minute budget cut. There was also a fight for its R-rating led by lead actor Ryan Reynolds, a rating necessary to allow the Deadpool character to be himself.
“Deadpool” accomplishes what it set out to do. The film nails the offensive, fourth wall-breaking, chimichanga-lovin’ “merc with a mouth” spirit of the comic book character near perfectly. This is achieved seemingly effortlessly by Reynolds and his clear love for the character. The film adaptation of “Deadpool” feels almost exactly like the original comic book version, from the suit to the voice to the jokes. Reynolds hardly ever stops talking during the film, be it during the exposition to get the plot going or during one of his many well-executed jokes. That being said, some lines do feel forced and function as blatant fan-service. At the beginning of film, a slow-motion scene features a tumbling car filled with bodies, and in between the slow-mo, Deadpool questions if he left the stove on. Another is close to the end where the character has a short line about chimichangas right before the final battle, which had a somewhat superficial feel to it.
A few missed jokes aside, “Deadpool” is gut-wrenchingly hilarious. The opening credits feature lines like “Directed by a Total Asshat” or “Starring A CGI Character.” The absurdity continues when Deadpool attempts to kill someone with a Zamboni.
Seeing scenes that normal superhero movies won’t dare to even try is a refreshing new take. Case in point: A short cut-away to Deadpool masturbating with a stuffed unicorn plush. Not something you see everyday. Yet even with these distinct breaks from normal hero tropes, Deadpool is still a superhero movie and hits some of the same beats as regular hero films.
The archetypal hero’s journey and progression from homemade costume to sleek superhero outfit is done well, and still keeps up with the tone of the film. Scenes where the hero gets taken out of the action and put into hilarious and mundane moments are what make Deadpool great, a factor that is unfortunately absent in most films.
While Ryan Reynolds does an amazing job of playing Deadpool and setting the tone of the film, the rest of the movie falls a little flat in terms of story and other characters.
The film plays it safe for Deadpool’s first venture into live-action with a rather predictable and cliche story and villain. There was a steady, predictable feel to the progression of plot, and there weren’t many surprises or twists. There was also a lack of story elements regarding the fact that Deadpool can’t be injured.
At times, though, this worked to the movie’s advantage. A particularly gory scene of conflict between Deadpool and Colossus, a giant silver member of the X-Men, made for some stellar moments and comedy.
Character wise, the movie also felt small and underwhelming, in no part due to the actors. The X-Men are a big part of the premise of “Deadpool,” and the movie didn’t utilize this connection well. Additionally, the villain didn’t seem to have value beyond functioning as someone there simply for Deadpool to fight.
Deadpool isn’t a hero, and it shows in the film. It differs from most hero films with vulgar one-liners, and the well-played action sequences add another unique element. The fight scenes are well-choreographed and explosive, featuring Deadpool gunning down enemies with only 12 bullets or stabbing someone straight through the gut with his katanas. The movie does not hold back on the gore, which adds a certain mystical feeling to the film.
All in all, “Deadpool” gives the audience what it has been craving with a good anti-hero movie about one of Marvel’s most beloved characters. “Deadpool” gets a four out of five.