Deadpool 2 - Review
The Merc with a mouth is back! Deadpool returns to our screens with a new director and a new supporting cast. The sequel is exactly what you would expect, and that is not a bad thing. Let's deep dive into one of the funniest, self-referential movies of the year.
There are some minor spoilers throughout, so don't read if you haven't seen it yet.
Sequels are sometimes a victim of their franchise's own success. Take The Hangover Part II for example. They took everything that worked from the first film, dialed it up a notch and presented it in the second one. The result was a stale, virtual carbon copy of the first movie.
Deadpool 2 managed to avoid that. It gave people more of what we loved about the first one but managed to have a ton of heart and growth with it at the same time. The first scene is laid out very similar to the first scene of the first movie. It is an In-Media-Res scene that has an incredible Wolverine joke. Then it flashes back, and we catch up to that scene a bit later.
Cable's entrance was fantastic, and while he had a truncated version of his origin put on screen, it was enough for story purposes. Josh Brolin was an awesome Cable, and I hope he has a long and prosperous future as the character. The last comic book movie I saw also had Brolin in it, but it couldn't have been a more different movie. Deadpool 2 is the Anti-Infinity War, and that is meant in the best way possible. It was the perfect dessert to a heavy meal.
The presentation of the X-Force was a big selling point of the movie. The way the movie handled them was quite a surprise, and in true Deadpool fashion. It brought about a wonderful cameo, and some fun moments, but the stand out highlight was Zazie Beetz' Domino. Beetz is going to have a hugely successful career, and whatever the fate of the X-Universe is, they would be smart to keep Beetz as a big part of it.
Some of the old favorites from the first movie get some great growth and development in this one. Colossus, Negasonic and Dopinder are all have great moments. Weasel has a few moments, but it felt like he was edited a bit heavier than originally intended, due to all of the allegations surrounding T.J. Miller. The story didn't suffer for it though.
The story is the most surprising part of Deadpool 2. It was pretty straightforward, but had a ton of heart. It was surprising how emotionally heavy a lot of moments were. They were undercut right away by a quip or a one-liner, but there was still a resonance to them that let the evolution of the characters happen.
Very early in the film, Deadpool mentions that this is a family film. That line got a huge laugh. But in a sick, twisted Deadpoolian way, he was right. The grief over the loss of Vanessa made him realize the importance of family, and he found a makeshift family consisting of a bunch of misfits.
There are a ton of Easter Eggs in the film, and each one is better than the next. Most of them are cameos, or verbal references to the MCU and and the DC Universe. But was one much more subtle than that.
Near the end of the movie, Deadpool's suit gets hit with some debris, and it changes the color:
It looks like a cinematic version of what his X-Force suit looks like in the comics:
Who knows if we will actually ever see that version of the suit on the big screen but if we saw the Iron Spider suit, and if we will be seeing the full Manta get-up in Aquaman then anything is possible.
Other than a threadbare plot with little to no nuance whatsoever, the only criticism I have was the insistence of showing Ryan Reynolds in person. I have nothing against him, but they seemed to have write around ways for him to be out of the mask. They do it in the Avengers movies with Chris Evans also. I get it. A mask can't show humanity. A mask can't give you the emotion needed to get the point across. It is why Wolverine never wore the yellow spandex. But Deadpool is the one and only franchise that can get away with him being exclusively in the costume and be fine. The story calls for him to be out of it sometimes, and that is perfectly fine, but to alter things in order for him to get out of it more than needed is something that needn't have happened. It just seemed excessive at times.
Those were my only minor quibbles. The direction of David Leitch was definitely a highlight. It certainly fell in line with the violence and coordination of John Wick. The direction was a definite upgrade from the first film. Tim Miller left over "creative differences" and I am curious as to how different he wanted the final outcome to be.
The movie ended on a pretty sweet note, with Deadpool finding his new family. For any other hero, and any other movie, that would have been perfectly satisfactory. But not for this. After the contractually obligated shot of Ryan Reynolds looking like himself, the credits roll, and then the best part of the movie happens.
There have been a ton of post-credit scenes in movies. They are much more prominent in comic book movies than any other genre, but they existed long before that. There have been some truly great ones, but the ones presented here are - without question - the best ones to ever happen.
Deadpool traveled in time and fixed a few things. If you think about it, that means the events of Deadpool 2 don't matter too much. Most of the movie is erased. But the montage was so fun, it hardly matters. It goes exactly where you think it will, and then some. The X-Men timeline is so skewed, that it makes little difference what the results of the joke would be. So I am glad they decided to go all in on it.
It is unclear whether there will be a Deadpool 3. Usually, these are sure things, but with the landscape of Fox's movie department, and the development of an X-Force film, there is no guarantee. Rest assured however, that Ryan Reynold's Deadpool will be back in some shape or form in the future.
It is rare that a sequel manages to stay true to its roots, while being just as fun as the first adventure, if not better. Deadpool 2 certainly does. Right now, I would say it is as good as the 2016 film. Future rewatches will determine if it stays that way, or gets better or worse.
After the heaviness of Avengers: Infinity War, Deadpool 2 is the perfect response to it. The spectrum of superhero movies runs wide. I am glad we live in a world where both types of stories can be told. The world needs Deadpool and Deadpool 2 delivered on that need. I am excited to see what the future hold for the character.
Deadpool 2 is now playing in theaters everywhere.
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