Ryan Reynolds is back as Deadpool (aka Wade Wilson) in Deadpool 2, the sequel to the hit movie. The good thing is that it’s the same as it was before, but has some more to offer this time around. If you want it to be more than a fun take on the superhero genre and expect something deeper, then you might be disappointed. The movie pretty much does what you expect in terms of it’s humor and style, but it also attempts to be more than that, which works to varying degrees.
The meta aspect is still there as well as the 4th wall breaking and is still very much welcome. Aside from the usual wisecracking, the movie puts Wade Wilson in a vulnerable spot as he goes through a major event that affects his life for the worse and causes him to have trust issues. As a way of becoming who he once was, his old friend Colossus, puts him on a mission to save a young boy named Russell from himself after the boy plans to get vengeance on those who’ve harmed him. Deadpool also puts together a new team of superheroes to assist him, but that’s not really the most important part as this is all Deadpool, all the time. There are still welcome appearances from some characters in the original. Vanessa, Deadpool/Wade’s girlfriend that plays a big part in the movie in some unexpected ways. She also helps to add an emotional core to the movie and makes him more sympathetic as a result because it’s the one of the few times where he’s not just slinging jokes as much and he allows himself to be a person. Dopinder, the cab driver from the first movie, also returns. Now, he wants to help Deadpool fight crime, which provides some memorable moments here.
Despite this being a parody of sorts, there’s still a semblance of a plot and this one does attempt to be more than just a joke machine, which is pretty hit and miss. When a joke hits, it can be really hilarious. While there is definitely an over-reliance on pop culture references and ironic humor, I can’t help but admit that it did make me laugh a lot despite that. Even having one too many scenes of a cheerful upbeat song juxtaposing a violent action sequence isn’t enough to make me overlook the fact that Reynolds is still charming enough in the role and makes this a very enjoyable experience throughout. Clearly, this is a role he is passionate about and he wants to make the most of it as possible. He is still effective as he was in the first movie as it’s still clear that he’s very passionate about the character and the movie he’s bringing to life as he’s not only the star but a co-writer as well, which really highlights of how much of himself he brings to the movie. There’s also some solid direction from John Wick director David Leitch. The overall tone that Reynolds and the rest of the cast and crew bring to the proceedings work as a balance to the film’s darker elements that Leitch brings to the table.
Josh Brolin is fun in his role as Cable, an assassin from the future sent to murder the young boy Deadpool has to protect. In a movie full of people at a 8-10, it’s nice seeing someone at a 3, energy wise. He comes more sympathetic than you think even though he’s originally made to be an antagonist at first. His backstory is something you’ve seen a million times before, but Brolin is very convincing in the role. While it might bring some typical drama to an already overstuffed movie, he helps to balance the movie with some grit. It’s also an interesting touch to add someone who points out how silly the movie is at times and isn’t willing to play along for the most part and as a result, it results in a refreshing zig and zag dynamic he has with Deadpool. Zazie Beetz is fun as Domino, the superhero and one of Deadpool’s newest team members, who has luck for a superpower. She’s very charming and likable from the start. I do also like that while the movie jokes about her so called powers, the movie does let her be her character and her powers works as a contrast to Deadpool as it actually works in her favor, so that she actually can stand her ground and be her own person. There’s another part of the team, a guy named Peter, who has nothing to add to the team, but nonetheless added because that’s the joke. It sounds terrible in execution but it finds a way to work. Julian Dennison as the main young boy who needs protection, Russell, is a lot of fun and he’s not annoying as some kid actors are. Russell was an effective character as you get where he’s coming from and he holds his own against Reynolds when he gets the chance. It’s well done as it adds to the theme of family that comes across the whole movie, but they find a way to subvert it by adding some clever humor to it, and not making this part of the story-line too sentimental.
The second half of this movie is better than the first half. Even with a lot going on, the movie does a job juggling all the balls it has in the air. It also keeps a lot of the movie moving at a good momentum and maintains its energy throughout. The action scenes are well crafted and exciting to watch. It also helps that the movie’s villains are set up efficiently so that it feels like there’s actual stakes. Let’s face it: once you’ve seen enough of these superhero movies, it can be hard to feel any tension or drama at times because you can already tell how things will play out. But this movie is good at actually making you care about what’s happening because even if a lot of this is tongue in cheek, the characters feel like characters. Other than that, it hits a lot of the beats that you expect at this point. If you want more of the same, then you will be pleased with this movie has to offer. It’s just nice to spend time with Deadpool, these characters, and to see them have as much fun as we do seeing them.
I am giving Deadpool 2 a 3.5 out of 5 hairpieces!