Ryan Reynolds will be joined in Deadpool 2 by T.J. Miller, Morena Baccarin, Brianna Hildebrand, Leslie Uggams, Karan Soni and Stefan Kapičić who all reprise roles from the first film. Newcomers to the franchise include Josh Brolin as Cable and Zazie Beetz, Jack Kesy and Shioli Kutsuna. David Leitch takes over directing duties for the sequel.
After surviving a near fatal bovine attack, a disfigured cafeteria chef (Wade Wilson) struggles to fulfill his dream of becoming Mayberry’s hottest bartender while also learning to cope with his lost sense of taste. Searching to regain his spice for life, as well as a flux capacitor, Wade must battle ninjas, the yakuza, and a pack of sexually aggressive canines, as he journeys around the world to discover the importance of family, friendship, and flavor – finding a new taste for adventure and earning the coveted coffee mug title of World’s Best Lover.
When Deadpool was released in 2016 (reviewed here) it breathed new life in to the comic book movie. It was genuinely funny and entirely unique to everything else on the market. I, of course, loved it and looked forward to the release of Deadpool 2.
I’m in two minds as to whether Deadpool 2 is another revelation or simply a generic superhero sequel which catches a break for being funny.
The story crafted by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick and Ryan Reynolds is entirely derivative. At its best it is predictable and at its worst it’s dull. But the question I’m still asking myself several days later is: was it on purpose? Did Deadpool 2 spoof the superhero sequel movie in the most genius of ways?
The story beats are perfectly placed from start to finish. The inciting incident which sets Wade Wilson on his journey to the X-Force is sub-par but effectively crafted. It leaves Morena Baccarin criminally underused but provides Ryan Reynolds with a chance to show off some more of his dramatic acting.
From there we are presented with a wild ride of fight sequences, cameos and plot twists. All culminating in an emotional ending which feels designed to mirror the emotional resonance of the end of Logan but which presents itself with typical Deadpool humour.
In fact much of the movie seems to want to echo the emotional scope of Wolverine’s final outing. In doing so Deadpool 2 threatens to become a parody of itself.
Deadpool relied almost solely on its dark brand of comedy. Throughout the characters origin story we were treated to the kind of fourth wall breaking, meta commentary which is driven to the extremes in the sequel. All of which served to create the aforementioned uniqueness.
Deadpool 2 adds a level of drama to Wade’s life which feels at odds with his humour. Moments of pure comedy are interspersed with a depressing subplot about Wade’s inability to die.
Though it doesn’t ruin the film is does bring down the quality. At its worst it makes the film feel like any other superhero sequel.
It cleverly crafts moments of unadulterated, sometimes gruesome, humour and injects them in to a storyline we’ve seen plenty of times before.
Reynolds continues the great performance he started in Deadpool. I don’t think he is the best dramatic actor. Those scenes are his weakest in the film but aren’t bad. He continues to show a love for the X-Men universe which is palpable on screen.
He is able to poke fun at the genre without ever becoming offensive. Not topic is safe from cancer to suicide and of course the DC Universe.
Josh Brolin is less impactful as Cable as he is as Thanos. The character has less of a backstory than I would have liked. The audience is given enough to understand his motivation. There are a few hints at his full history. It’s likely we’ll need to wait for future instalments to hopefully see more.
The interactions between Cable and Deadpool are cleverly written. Pop culture references abound the two are able to jostle on screen several times before the eventual team up. When they do team up there’s still a friction which really makes for some of the films best dialogue.
The supporting cast share screen time equally. Colossus is as he was in Deadpool. A great friend to the Merc his arc is more fleshed out by the end of this movie.
Negasonic Teenage Warhead has something akin to an arc. Much of it plays out off screen but it’s nice to see her character developing.
Zazie Beetz portrayal of Domino is excellent. She’s also criminally under used but not to the same degree as Baccarin. Her role feels a little overhyped and many of her best moments have already been glimpsed in the trailers. There’s plenty more to come from her character. This is really just a great introduction for her.
Members of the X-Force team are little more than throwaway cameos. They feel wasted. Little is made of their introductions and more is made of their deaths only minutes later. Rather than setup the X-Force movie they are only here to provide a punchline.
Much like the first film there is little score in Deadpool 2. Instead the movie capitalises on popular music an incorporates it to the story. Dolly Parton and anything dub step are the butt of several jokes. It works but it’s nothing we haven’t heard before.
CGI is okay. Colossus looks exactly as he did in the first movie. I still wonder why he never changes out of metal form though. Given the limited budget he integrates well with the world around him.
The only other fully CGI creation is Juggernaut. His appearance is fleeting but suffers a little from the lack of budget. He appears a little more video game like in quality. There’s a softness and fluidity to his appearance which sets him apart from the rest of his scenes.
It’s still worth noting that his five minutes of screen time is a 100% improvement on the characters appearance in X-Men: The Last Stand. It’s not all bad for the character particularly when he mentions his brother in a wheelchair.
Deadpool 2 is either genius or derivative. I honestly can’t decide. Regardless it’s funny and irreverent. Most of the jokes land and will have you in stitches. Whilst the story is entirely predictable you won’t help but enjoy the overall product.