Even though ‘Deadpool’ was released a few weeks ago, there is no time like the present to put into words my thoughts on the film. It’s been a while since my last post, so needless to say I have been busy and got sidetracked for a while. Anyhoo, on with the review.
This is the second superhero film I reviewed. The last one was Marvel’s ‘Ant-Man’ last summer. So, again, it’s been a while. See the review of that film below.
As I mentioned before, I am not an avid comic book reader. I know some essentials, but not every little quirk or plot point of many superheroes. And honestly, I really knew nothing about the character Deadpool until the film and other overheard conversations of comic book readers.
The premise is Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds), a former Special Forces operative, is diagnosed with cancer and decides to undergo an experimental procedure from a supposed government agent known as Ajax (Ed Ekrein) in order to stay with the love of his life, Vanessa (Morena Baccarin). The procedure gives Wilson regenerative healing powers, disfigured and nearly left for dead. Wilson decides he can’t go back to her and lets her think he is dead. Thus, he goes on a killing spree, with the help from his friend Weasel (T. J. Miller), as he tracks down Ajax to hopefully restore himself to what he was before the procedure.
With a budget of $58 million, it has grossed more than $285 million in just three weeks, so obviously it getting a following. The character is one of Marvel’s comical characters who seems to make fun of himself and the fact that he’s in a comic book (or in this case a film). He’s been labeled as the “merc with a mouth.” The character likes to talk and make sarcastic quips and jokes at his opponents all the while shooting up bad guys and getting his own type of vigilante justice.
Deadpool seems to be far from a superhero, he’s an anit-hero. And I believe that’s what makes the character work in this film. He’s not a superhero and he knows it. He periodically breaking the fourth wall and talks to the camera (the audience), and continuously cracking jokes and being a smartass. Breaking the fourth wall, I feel, is similar to the “play within a play” convention in some theatrical stage productions. That convention I’ve always found humorous and it worked well in this film.
What also worked for me in the film was the story structure and how it creatively and efficiently went back and forth between present and past and wove it into an entertaining non-linear story. Wilson gave much voice over narration throughout the film, which added humor and insight to the entertaining story and characters. Fast paced action, elaborate highway chases, finely choreographed fight scenes, and impeccable dialogue make ‘Deadpool’ a treat to watch as it mixes these elements into an enjoyable film.
Tim Miller made his directorial debut, and an outstanding debut it was, with this film. Previously he has worked as an animator and visual effects artist. Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick wrote the script and it was produced by Simon Kinberg and Ryan Reynolds and executive produced by John J. Kelly and Stan Lee. It is rated R with a run time of 1 hour and 48 minutes.