It is no surprise that superhero movies have taken the world by storm. From Captain America to Superman, each movie holds a special place in the hearts of many. Yet throughout its most recent history, each movie has gotten PG-13 ratings…until this week. Deadpool, the first superhero movie of the year, is R-Rated…and that’s a good thing!
For the uninitiated, Deadpool is a supervillain turned antihero turned superhero that was created by Fabien Nicieza and Rob Liefeld, who was officially introduced in MARVEL’s The New Mutants #98 in 1991. Being fowl-mouthed, raunchy, crude, violent, eccentric, and an overall jokester takes a lot of practice and of course, breaking the fourth-wall, one of the abilities Deadpool (AKA Wade Wilson) does with such ease is a huge responsibility, when being the only one for comic-relief in some issues from the 1990’s and 2000s along with this decade. And of course, the movie sharing the exact same name as the mercenary stayed quite true to the source material.
Not to be confused with 2009’s X-Men Origins: Wolverine, which included a failed portrayal of Deadpool, 2016’s movie offers us a glimpse of the true spandex-wearing, fast-talking, regenerative degenerate (yes…just like Wolfy, he has a rapid healing factor, making him pretty much immortal). Ryan Reynolds, who has played Wade Wilson back in 2009 alongside Hugh Jackman is back at it again and this time he delivers all the one-liners and gory violence we would expect from the chimichanga-loving assassin.
Wilson is a former Special Forces soldier who recently learned he has cancer. Feeling as if his life is over, he decides to break up with his girlfriend, Vanessa Carlysle (portrayed by Morena Baccarin) a former prostitute who later becomes a mercenary herself. To his surprise, he is approached by a man named The Recruiter (Jed Rees) and told that he can be cured but is instead forced to go through “mutant experimentation” (doesn’t that ring a bell?).
Seeking revenge and looking to reunite with his lover, he goes on a bloody rampage against the people who lied to him; The Recruiter, Ajax (Ed Skrein) a villain who can never feel pain, making him a perfect foil to Deadpool and his healing ability, and Angel Dust (Gina Carano) who has the ability to increase her adrenaline giving her superhuman strength.
These characters play main parts in this movie but as characters themselves, they were a bit of a letdown, lacking character development and depth as a whole, making them quickly forgettable despite the great action sequences we got throughout the movie. With that said however, Rees, Skrein and Carano did great with what they were given, though they should’ve been given more to work with.
Wilson only succeeds however thanks to sidekicks Negasonic Teenage Warhead…or Ellie for short (Brianna Hildebrand), a young telepath with superhuman abilities who was also one of Emma Frost’s old students as well as Colossus (Stefan Kapicic) an incredibly strong mutant able to become steel at will. All three play off each other quite well.
Unfortunately, we do not dive as deep into the sidekicks’ backstories as much as we would want, but we have enough to understand that both these mutants will be playing much more important roles in future Marvel films.
WRITER’S NOTE: Due to the fact Ellie has only been in a few issues since her first appearance in NEW X-MEN #115 (2001), we never truly had a complete backstory, therefore writers were basically working with a blank slate hence giving them the freedom to morph the character at their will.
The other supporting characters such as Wiesel (T.J. Miller) and Blind Al (Leslie Uggams) are mainly there for laughs, but it would’ve been nice to see more of them, at times even more than the actual sidekicks. They both get the laughs that are deserved but it felt rushed at times, probably to make way for the action sequences and to further the plot in general. However, they are great characters that certainly complement Deadpool’s overall sense of humor.
But this is no sitcom. It is also an action movie, and there is plenty of it. Fast-paced with just the right amount of blood. It’s just what the doctor ordered for the common sickness from predictable PG-13 Superhero movies. Even though it takes plot points and customs from most of the superhero movies of the last decade, it’s unpredictable and has an overall different feeling. But a good feeling.
Deadpool keeps you guessing. Will he truly win? Will he lose his lover? Will the antagonist survive? Will Wolverine make a cameo? How many followers does Ellie even have on Twitter?
This isn’t your average Captain America movie…Boy Scouts are nowhere to be seen…and hopefully not in the theatres either as this is definitely not for children. Ever.
Deadpool is a movie that takes pride in its unconventionalism. First time director, Tim Miller was put in charge of the project since day one. This horribly graphic, stupendously self-aware, and macabre love-story/comedy/action film was written by Zombieland’s Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. Thanks to their creative instincts alongside the great deliveries from the cast, and even a cameo from Stan Lee, R-Rated Deadpool is a gem to behold.
Written By: Lazaros Kalipolidis
Originally Published: February 2016