If you like reading, continue on. If you’d rather I just tell you, then check out our review video above, with no spoilers. At the very bottom of this review, I’ll embed the spoiler-filled video, if you’re interested.
Deadpool stars Ryan Reynolds as former mercenary Wade Wilson, who is diagnosed with cancer and undergoes a drastic procedure to try and save his life. He’s doing this for his girlfriend Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) but things go sideways and he ends up completely disfigured and goes on a revenge killing spree to find the man that made him this way (homicidal mutant Ajax, played by Ed Skrein) and his bodyguard Angel Dust (Gina Carano). To help find this man, he enlists the help of the X-Men, most notably Colossus (voiced by Stefan Kapicic) and the angsty mutant Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand). He’s also helped out by his buddy Weasel (T.J. Miller), taxi driver Dopinder (Karan Soni), and his roommate Blind Al (Leslie Uggams).
Deadpool is everything I wanted it to be. To be fair, I had low standards. I just wanted some good jokes and some good action and I got more than enough of both.
Let’s start with Ryan Reynolds himself. He is Deadpool. He is charismatic, hilarious, and kicks ass, all at the right times. He fought tooth and nail for this movie to get made and you can tell this is a passion project for him. He’s even said in interviews that he’d be happy playing Deadpool for the rest of his life.
Firstly, this movie is a comedy. The laughs are nonstop and teeter back and forth between clever and subtle to the more obvious and inappropriate jokes. It’s definitely an adult movie, so don’t bring the kids to this one. The jokes hit but they sometimes resort to the lowest common denominator, but I didn’t mind much.
Secondly, this movie is an action superhero flick. The action is great, though the CGI does appear a little low-budget in several scenes. Deadpool is amazing to watch though, as he slices and dices armies of soldiers. The fight choreography is fun and each setpiece feels unique. The two main bad guys (Ajax and Angel Dust) are both brawlers, so we don’t get a ton of diversity in the fight sequences but they shake it up enough to keep you entertained.
We also get our first glimpse of the current day X-Men, since the events of Days of Future Past happened. We really only see Colossus and his mentee Negasonic Teenage Warhead but they both get some cool moments, most notably in a the climax of the film (which is unfortunately showcased a little too much in the trailers). The good news is that they (Colossus especially) get a great showing and a much truer adaptation to their comic book roots.
I also appreciated the actual depth to the romantic arc of the story, which really surprised me. There were some moments between Wade and Vanessa that I actually felt something, like an actual resonance with the story. There were some great moments by Reynolds that really gave Deadpool some depth.
What doesn’t work?
While the heroes were all pretty great, the villains didn’t get the same treatment. The main villain Ajax (Ed Skrein) didn’t have much to do other than the be the target of Deadpool’s revenge. His bodyguard Angel Dust (Gina Carano) got even less development, as we weren’t even sure why she was there or what she wanted. They did the job fine, they made for good fights, but they didn’t have any depth beyond that.
The movie is also relatively small-scale and predictable. It’s a pretty standard origin story, though told in a different way, and Deadpool isn’t trying to save the world, so sometimes it felt like the stakes were relatively low. Again, not a huge detractor, this movie didn’t need to be anything more than that.
Deadpool isn’t going to win any awards but it doesn’t need to. It’s hilarious, full of great fight sequences, and still manages to slip in some decent performances. As a warning though, it is jam-packed full of excessive violence, sex scenes, and more profanity than you’ve ever heard in a superhero movie before. Just know that going in. But if that sounds fun, you’ll likely have a great time at the movies with this one.
As a bonus, here’s a video for those of you that have seen the movie!