They’ve done it again: another obscene, feature-length vengeance kick from Ryan Reynolds and Co. As promised in the trailers, Deadpool (DP) turns ringmaster as he assembles his own band of misfits in the ‘X-Force’. The group’s raison detre is seemingly to face down Cable – the mysterious, timetravelling-antagonist portrayed by Josh Brolin, who can do no wrong of late.
If this were a more straight-edge Marvel movie, I’d need a whole lot more development of Cable’s backstory, but given that DP2 is above all about the humour, they just about get away with the bare-bones exposition of the future Cable hails from: essentially, he has travelled back in time to take out the mutant who killed his family. Unfortunately for him, however, there’s an unkillable, leather-clad cancer survivor around to thwart his every move. The titular anti-hero is set against Cable from the off, as he tries to redeem the ball of teen-angst that is ‘Firefist’.
As the plot unfolds, there is more of the trademark, politically-incorrect humour which made the first instalment so fresh, and – in fourth-wall-breaking style – the movie lays superhero tropes bare. You can expect plenty of references to the Marvel and DC Cinematic Universes, as well scathing reflections on Reynolds’ own appearances in X-Men Origins: Wolverine and the Green Lantern. The humour is consistent throughout, and had the audience laughing out loud time and time again, though some of the references would have been a bit more biting if they were more current.
So whilst it certainly wasn’t a case of diminishing returns as far as humour was concerned, what about the action?
Well, in the wake of the obscenely high budgeted Infinity War, the action in Deadpool felt a little muted; which would have been absolutely fine – afterall, what was refreshing about the first Deadpool movie wasn’t the scale of the action, but rather the over-the-top, visceral nature of the fight sequences; those first ultraviolent scenes unlike anything we’d seen before in the Marvel universe. HOWEVER, unfortunately for this sequel, Logan (2017) has also been released in the meantime, and completely changed the game insofar as superpowered bloodbaths are concerned. After Logan, DP2’s fight scenes felt – dare I say it – a little soft.
Speaking of its soft side, DP2 openly (if sardonically) refer to itself as a family movie, and at times it actually does feel that way. The lovable host of characters from the first movie return in style in this instalment and there’s a definite family vibe to their cameraderie. Returing are: Blind Al, the visually impaired matriarch; Dopinder, DP’s chauffeur and would-be-protege; Weasel, the bestfriend/bartender turned lieutenant; and Collosus, the metallic Beast from the East, who tries to serve as a moral compass.
Verdict: DO WATCH /
Deadpool 2 is well worth 2 hours of anyone’s time. Perhaps because superhero movies have become such an enormous part of the film industry, and have come to take themselves altogether too seriously, the self-effacing Deadpool formula is delightfully refreshing. It is mindlessly unadulterated fun, and is perfect for those fans who are, perhaps, still trying to figure out what the hell to make of Infinity War.