I think we all knew what to expect from this. I don’t think anyone expected, or wanted, Pride and Prejudice from this film, no we wanted more of what we got last time: hilarity, vengeance and a whole lot of nasty language.
After the events of the first movie, Wade settles into his new life as an Olympic champion, with Miss World on his arm, when an evil billionaire threatens to steal Christmas from the orphans, Wade must take up the Deadpool mantle to once again spread great vengeance, violence, but more than anything else… love.
In case you didn’t work this out, that story outline was sarcasm, I did it because I refuse to approach this film straight-laced and more seriously than the main character. That isn’t the criticism it sounds like, I don’t want Deadpool to take anything seriously, and I would like to wager few people going to watch do either.
Ryan Reynolds slips back into the red jumpsuit with great aplomb, just as he did two years ago in his first outing, and he hasn’t grown or matured a single bit. All the characters you know and love from the first time round are back, although not as much as I’d have liked, I’ll admit, Blind Al in particular is still a treat, as is Weasel even if the person playing him is of questionable moral standing.
The greatest shame is the misuse of the two X-Men we saw in the first film, Colossus and Negasonic Teenage War-Head, more so for the former as she felt like a break-out character in Deadpool that wasn’t capitalised on here, she’s given new wrinkles to her character and her and Deadpool’s banter game is still strong but it feels like a missed opportunity.
Josh Brolin enters himself into another Marvel property here as Cable, a time#travelling mercenary with a metal arm, almost like a character designed by a small boy with colouring books, trying to make-up a character that’s so cool in his own head. However, fourth-wall breaking fun-ster Cable is not, and the clashes with Deadpool are as inevitable as they are entertaining, with two of the fights the two have in particular standing out as high points for the movie. Brolin really deserves a lot of credit for juggling roles in this and Avengers and not making them seem identical, and besides his voice being recognisable, I think there are ample differences in his portrayals, which is no small feat in itself.
As for the rest of the cast, it’s a wide and varied one, stuffed to the gills with in-jokes and references as this movie is, it doesn’t skimp on its casting, the new characters add a certain scale to this that was missing before due to the first films smaller budget, here it lets it’s hair down with who and what it can include.
Direction-wise, we’ve had a change of personnel but not of style, Rob Leitch helmed this sequel after Tim Miller dropped out due to ‘creative differences’ and given Leitch’s love for the stylised (his past works including the John Wick movies and Atomic Blonde) it’s surprising to see his restraint on the style front, Deadpool is no John Wick, therefore to frame the film as such would be ridiculous, so I commend Leitch for this.
Given the films R-rating, it’s no surprise that the blood, guts and language return for this inspired sequel, in fact I’d even say that the action is better shot and choreographed than the first and is certainly more consistent, the first film was a toe in the water to test it, this film is a running bomb into the deep end.
The only real test of comedy is whether it makes you laugh, and I’m pleased to report that the laughs are another thing that survive the trip to sequel-town, even though they don’t seem to have moved anywhere, meaning fourth-wall breaks and inside jokes are the order of the day, I do seem to recall laughing a lot during the film but sometimes the reference or line didn’t quite hit, sometimes because it was clunky and sometimes because of its unrefined nature, it feels as though the script was a simple loose document ignored liberally for some improv, whereas this can work out fine on occasion, to roll with it too much risks losing a certain structure. Deadpool walls the fine line a few times during the movie but generally hits the mark, it’s most refined joke is the opening titles, which may seem familiar to some movie-goers.
In conclusion, those who liked the first helping of Deadpool and wanted more, this is the movie for you, it’s scope larger and its budget fatter than before, it is not likely to win over those who didn’t enjoy Deadpool’s first outing though, but I get the feeling that he wouldn’t care all that much. It’s dumb fun and sometimes, there’s nothing wrong with dumb fun.