Deadpool (R) ★★★

Ryan Reynolds stars in Deadpool. Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox.
Ryan Reynolds stars in Deadpool. Photo Credit: 20th Century Fox.

The “Anti”-Superhero Movie

Deadpool, is the first R-rated superhero movie to come along, which is fitting as our eponymous hero breaks the mold as far as superheroes go. He is foul-mouthed, kills his enemies and basically lacks respect for the superhero archetype, which makes this entertaining movie stand out from the pack.

The film centers on Wade Wilson, played by Ryan Reynolds (Self/less, 2015), a wise-cracking, ex-special forces operative who has become a mercenary for hire. He meets the beautiful and equally crass, Vanessa, (played by Morena Baccarin, Spy, 2015) at the bar he and his mercenary buddies frequent and they begin dating thereafter, an unorthodox courtship. Things are smooth sailing for the couple to the point where Wade proposes to his beautiful girlfriend, but suddenly collapses and discovers he has a terminal illness. A mysterious recruiter offers Wilson experimental treatments allegedly designed to save his life from a death sentence, but Wilson rejects the offer. However, realizing he does not want Vanessa to merely watch him die from the disease, Wade finally relents and goes off to pursue treatment. The experiments are overseen by Ajax (Ed Skrein, The Transporter Refueled, 2015), and we soon discover that these often tortuous treatments are revealed to not just be designed to save Wade Wilson’s life, but to turn him into a slave with superhuman abilities. While he is able to escape Ajax’s clutches, it is not before Wilson’s entire body and face are badly disfigured. Over the course of the movie, Wilson transforms himself into Deadpool, and hunts down Ajax, the man who nearly took his life and just may hold the key to restoring his appearance.

While Deadpool might appear to be yet another comic book movie in the series of seemingly endless comic book origin stories, this movie truly stands alone as unique and laugh out loud funny. Often breaking the fourth wall, Deadpool directly tells his background story to the viewing audience as if they are alongside him in his quest for vengeance. Armed with an irreverent and outlandish sense of humor along with his superhuman abilities, Deadpool proudly distinguishes himself as the anti-hero. Deadpool enjoys every minute of his typically lethal pursuit for revenge all the while poking fun at traditional do-gooder superheroes.

Ryan Reynolds, in his second comic book-based movie after the flop Green Lantern (2011), finally displays the leading man charm that he has had trouble demonstrating over the past decade. Reynolds’s performance is complemented by T.J. Miller (Hell and Back, 2015) who provides comedic relief as the quirky character Weasel, a bartender at Wilson’s favorite bar. The movie does fall short in providing the audience with appropriate context into Ajax’s villainous background and evil motivations. Despite this shortcoming, however, this dark comedy-action combination does prevail in being highly entertaining.

Bottom-Line?  Deadpool is unlike any typical comic book movie. It is an irreverent, crass dark comedy mixed with the comic book action sequences that you’ve come to expect from Marvel Studios. The unique combination of comedy and action works as Deadpool is entertaining from the opening minute.

Cast: Ryan Reynolds (Wade Wilson / Deadpool), Morena Baccarin (Vanessa Carlysle/Copycat), Ed Skrein (Ajax), T.J. Miller (Weasel), Gina Carano (Angel Dust),         (Ellie Phimister / Negasonic Teenage Warhead)

Credits: Directed by Tim Miller; Written by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick

Studio: 20th Century Fox

Run Time: 103 minutes

Jessica Aymond © February 10, 2016