Being able to laugh at oneself is one of the most admirable and useful things in life. It allows you to take self-criticism and in a way, it helps you become a better person by identifying your faults. Marvel is one of the most powerful movie studios in Hollywood (property of Disney), it has produced great superhero hits, which recently have become a bit generic. Thankfully, Marvel is one step ahead of us, and it has produced Deadpool, a movie that makes fun of all the stereotypes and tackiness that we see in their movies.
Deadpool has a very typical superhero plot, and in a way it’s done so on purpose. Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is a retired Special Forces agent, who lives as a thug for hire. Wilson meets a friendly prostitute named Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) and soon starts off a romantic relationship with her. Life seems perfect, but suddenly Wilson is diagnosed with an advanced cancer. Losing all hope, Wilson decides to leave Vanessa; however, one day at his favorite bar, Wilson meets a mysterious suited man who tells him he can cure his cancer. Wilson then submits himself to an underground experimental facility where a British scientist that goes by the name of Ajax (Ed Skrein) has Wilson undergo extreme forms of torture, which would supposedly mutate his body. Everything seems to have worked out, because Wilson develops self-healing powers, which cure his cancer, but the journey that he underwent and the physical scars that Ajax has left on Wilson prompt him to don a new identity: Deadpool, in order to exact revenge.
The biggest strength of this film is the fact that it doesn’t take itself seriously; it makes fun of its own genre and of the movie world itself. It reminded me of Kick-Ass, but a bit messier and more infused with pop culture references. Deadpoolis a rare R-rated superhero film, and director Tim Miller takes advantage of that and tries to be as dirty and gritty with his humor (and very visibly with the violence as well), however, I felt that the film kept hurling joke after joke where you were laughing a lot, but it was to excess so that you couldn’t distinguish normal lines from funny ones.
And then there is the matter of the structured story. It’s difficult to criticize this because the film is purposefully making fun of the generic superhero origin story, but I also can’t help shaking off how well Kick-Ass had satirized its own genre while also giving us a creative and refreshing storyline. And so while Deadpool had some incredibly fleshed out characters, their actual story and journey came off as lazy.
Undisputedly the star of the show is Ryan Reynolds, who fought for many years to bring the character of Deadpool to the screen (he previously portrayed him fatally in the trashy X-Men: Origins). Reynolds perfectly embodies Deadpool and Wilson’s wit; he bravely stretches his humor to the boundaries, but without becoming too offensive, you certainly could not imagine another actor in the role. Reynolds also holds a great chemistry with Morena Baccarin, who personally disappointed me in Homeland, but fully lets loose here. There was also some notable contributions from TJ Miller who plays Wilson’s best friend, and of Brianna Hildebrand who plays a mutant sidekick (this is her feature film debut).
In the end I have to confess that Deadpool was a hell of a good time, and despite some underworked story, the strong cast and fresh humor make this film worth your time.