Deadpool (2016) by The Critical Movie Critics

Movie Review: Deadpool (2016)

I, for one, never thought there could ever be a more sarcastic super hero than Spider-Man, but boy, was I mistaken. Tim Miller, in his directorial debut (although he was creative supervisor on “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World”) finally finishes up, Deadpool, a concept nearly eight years in the can. Deadpool, a character created by Rob Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza in 1991 as part of the “X-Men”/“X-Force” universe, was a special forces soldier who is diagnosed with terminal cancer and then saved by a truly mad scientist, Ajax. He is so jaded and decidedly acerbic that he makes Bill Murray in “Scrooged” seem like Dr. Ben Carson (shameless current event plug most intended).

This R-rated superhero film (joining the ranks of 2004’s “Blade: Trinity,” 2008’s “Punisher: War Zone” and 2009’s “Watchmen”) starring Ryan Reynolds (“Mississippi Grind”), T.J. Miller (“Transformers: Age of Extinction”), Ed Skrein (so terrible in “The Transporter Refueled”), Morena Baccarin (“Gotham” and “Homeland” TV series) and Brianna Hildebrand (“First Girl I Loved”), among others, is unabashedly violent, delightfully obscene and gleefully sardonic with enough gore to please Sam Peckinpah and give Quentin Tarantino an orgasm. The fun begins with the opening credit roll, which reads “Writers: The Real Heroes Here; Producers: Asshats; and Directed By; Some Overpaid Tool.” After that, the entire enterprise — full of torture, blood, death and one-liners — reminds one of a feature film by the creators of “Honest Trailers.”

Here, we meet Deadpool/Wade Wilson (Reynolds) who destroys and dismembers the bad guys with seemingly effortless effort, but meets his match against his “X-Men” friends, Colossus (voice of Stefan Kapicic, “Big Miracle”) and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Hildebrand), who unwittingly allow the target of his revenge to escape. This is followed with one of many of his asides to the audience explaining the backstory: Wade leads a life of small-time mercenarism (is that actually a word?!) frightening lowlife stalkers and hanging out with his only friend, the bartender (stand-up comedian Miller) at a cheap dive.

Later, he meets exotic dancer (i.e., stripper) Vanessa (Baccarin), who falls in love with the big lug. Unfortunately, as previously mentioned, Wade becomes a cancer victim and resigns himself to an early demise. He then meets a creepy recruiter (Jed Rees, “Funeral Day,” but better known as one of the mentally-challenged athletes in “The Ringer”) who promises his affliction will be cured. That’s where we meet Francis/Ajax (Skrein), who, along with sidekick Angel Dust (Gina Carano, “Fast & Furious 6”), informs Wade that he is a pawn in a much larger game and then taunts and tortures his victim until he becomes a self-made mutant (remember, this character does have “X-Men” roots) and a nearly immortal super (sarcastic) hero.

After escaping from this Hell, he consults with his barkeep bud, but cannot show his face (which has suffered under his ordeal until he looks like John Malkovich after a good beating) to Vanessa. That’s okay, however, because she is soon kidnapped by the baddies and taken aboard some kind of dilapidated aircraft carrier. With his “X-Men” sidekicks, Deadpool does his best to save the day, as well as his squeeze and the film franchise for separate sequels or inclusion in other group character features.

Deadpool brings the character to life in a way that amounts to a shot of adrenaline to a genre that has been set on cruise control, (which 20th Century Fox is partially to blame for with what they’ve done with “Fantastic Four” and the “X-Men” franchise). Hell, they very nearly destroyed the Deadpool character before he even had a chance to begin when he was unceremoniously dropped into “X-Men Origins: Wolverine.” However, through the tenacity of Reynolds, and a timely leak of test footage, fans of the character have finally gotten their anti-hero in all his glory. A glory made all the better by Reynolds who is spot-on perfect as the disillusioned and bitter hero. There is no doubt this role was written specifically with him in mind. This role with its off-the-cuff one-liners, meta observations and physicality may represent Reynolds’ best comedic/action/drama/thriller outing to date.

Others who stand out are Skrein as the villain who feels no pain, and Miller, as the friend of the hero who causes plenty with some groaning jokes, which sometimes miss by a mile. Fear not, though, because there are so many quick puns (from comments on the current bloody battles in the movie to roasting other films in the comic book galaxy — including a few well-timed zingers regarding Reynolds’ own disastrous “Green Lantern” experience). And, as usual, there is the always-anticipated cameo by Stan Lee (who ironically had nothing to do with this character), probably one of the best he’s ever been in. It all adds up to violently entertaining movie that stands to (and rightfully so) break February box office records.

Critical Movie Critic Rating:
4 Star Rating: Good


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The Critical Movie Critics

I have been a movie fan for most of my life and a film critic since 1986 (my first published review was for "Platoon"). Since that time I have written for several news and entertainment publications in California, Utah and Idaho. Big fan of the Academy Awards - but wish it would go back to the five-minute dinner it was in May, 1929. A former member of the San Diego Film Critics Society and current co-host of "The Movie Guys," each Sunday afternoon on KOGO AM 600 in San Diego with Kevin Finnerty.

'Movie Review: Deadpool (2016)' have 20 comments

  1. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 14, 2016 @ 11:11 pm househunter

    Fast inventive action, quick witted and a ton of fun. But and a big but, its too much. I get the breaking of the 4th wall and self awareness jokes but it just doesn’t stop. Maybe that’s part of the joke, I don’t know but man oh man I felt like once the movie was over I was in a fight with a boxer…

  2. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 14, 2016 @ 11:17 pm 68MHz

    I loved it every single morsel of it.

  3. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 14, 2016 @ 11:35 pm cxaver

    Fantastic movie – so crazy! I can’t believe Fox was shelving this for all these years. Ryan Reynolds deserves an award for all the effort he expended to get this movie made. I was laughing long after I left the theater.

  4. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 14, 2016 @ 11:37 pm possibly in michigan

    A refreshingly bloody take on a genre that has neutered itself.

  5. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 14, 2016 @ 11:59 pm playtime


  6. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 12:16 am skullking fischer

    I saw the movie yesterday in a full house. Everyone was hooting and hollering and laughing. It’s one of the best times I’ve had in a theater (another was Paranormal Activity where everyone was shrieking).

  7. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 12:40 am Benine

    If adolescent humor is your thing, Deadpool is heaven. If it isn’t, you’re going to be in Hell for 2 hours.

  8. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 1:18 am somersquash

    I’m not hating on the movie but seriously, it’s not some revolutionary piece of filmmaking. It follows all the standard tropes as every other comicbook movie. More jokes and violence and profanity and boobs isn’t a game changer.

  9. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 1:33 am Ikem

    Most fun hero!

  10. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 3:06 am gary graham

    Overall I grade it a C+.

    I loved the first half of the movie. I though it was totally fresh and funny. The second half it switches gears, stops doing the alot of the fresh stuff, and becomes like every other action-type movie. I’m not saying I didn’t like the second half but it felt like the characters were put into similar but different movie .

  11. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 4:46 am k3v

    My kind of movie. Childish. Bloody. Violent. Funny.

  12. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 8:37 am Articulo

    The energy, the farce of Deadpool may have redefined the superhero/comic movie. They, and I mean Marvel and DC, have all tried to escape their pasts in some way by taking on superserious tones and dramatizing the spectacle of people with superpowers. Deadpool embraces the frivolity that people with ridiculous powers are running around in tights.

    • The Critical Movie Critics

      February 15, 2016 @ 12:19 pm megastar uno

      I don’t agree with all you’ve said. DC and Marvel used comics to address the everyday hardships of life many of their readers were experiencing. In many cases the powers were an extra crutch the hero had to deal with so their lack of “comiciness” is not an attempt to distance themselves from the source. Deadpool on the other hand was purposely written tongue in cheek like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles so their subsequent films show that side.

    • The Critical Movie Critics

      February 15, 2016 @ 4:05 pm brian

      It’s going to make a lot of money but also consider there isn’t anything playing against it AND they’ve been marketing the hell out of it.. It’s a nice change of pace and I for one REALLY enjoyed it (loved the Zamboni scene) but it’s not going to change business as usual.

  13. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 9:18 am stangable

    Kick-Ass paved the way showing there is an appetite for violent, controversial R-rated comic characters.

  14. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 9:47 am Teknotronik

    Great flick. Seen it twice already.

  15. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 10:35 am Charpee

    It’s a very now movie-I don’t think it’ll age well. The pop culture references/80s humor is overdone and a lot of the jokes weren’t picked up on by the younger people in the audience. In 20 years no one will recognize the jokes or understand the punchlines.

  16. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 1:52 pm less_is_less

    I want an X-Force movie ……… NOW!

  17. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 15, 2016 @ 8:10 pm KAMAKAZI

    I wish they come up with a way to cross this Deadpool into the X-Men and MCU universes so he can kill everyone.

  18. The Critical Movie Critics

    February 17, 2016 @ 2:24 pm Stormrider

    Deadpool kicks the ass!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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