Published on May 18th, 2018 | by Tim Cooper
Deadpool 2 – Film Review
Reviewed by Tim Cooper on the 18th of May 2018
Fox presents a film by David Leitch
Produced by Simon Kinberg, Ryan Reynolds and Lauren Shuler Donner
Written by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick and Ryan Reynolds based on Deadpool by Fabian Nicieza and Rob Liefeld
Starring Ryan Reynolds, Josh Brolin, Morena Baccarin, Julian Dennison, Zazie Beetz, T.J. Miller, Brianna Hildebrand and Jack Kesy
Music by Tyler Bates
Cinematography Jonathan Sela
Edited by Dirk Westervelt, Craig Alpert and Elísabet Ronaldsdóttir
Running Time: 120 minutes
Release Date: the 16th of May 2018
Deadpool, the ’Merc with the mouth’, is back and bolder and bloodier than ever. Enlisting the help of some not-so-super mutants, everyone’s favourite foul-mouthed hero embarks on a rescue mission to save the life of a powerful young mutant boy.
Deadpool 2 isn’t concerned with comic book films oversaturating cinema screens. Its title character openly blasts his way to the box office by nipping at the heels of his older Marvel Studio brothers. The film is loaded with comic book references so punctual that Deadpool even throws shade at The Avengers: Infinity War, which is only a few weeks into its barnstorming cinematic run.
Directed by David Leitch (Atomic Blonde, 2017), the entire film is heavily self-referential and intent on breaking the fourth wall. This is typical of the successful first instalment, but it results in the viewing experience becoming rhythmically jarring and lacking emotional depth.
While this may deter some viewers, it remains coherent with the style of the character’s comic book appearances and it shouldn’t surprise anyone familiar with the source material. The comedy in DP2 is still a heady mix of gross-out gags and over-the-top firefights. Thankfully, the pace has quickened and the rapid-fire jokes, while mostly ridiculous, are notably funnier this time around.
Deadpool (2016) revolved around a single action set piece as the story was told through a broken narrative structure. The R-rated violence everyone was hoping for was present and Reynolds easily nailed the role’s comedic aspects. However, Deadpool suffered from a confused structure and an unexciting supporting cast that left it feeling anticlimactic.
The film was still a massive box office success, and the R-rating became the most discussed point of the film’s feats. It paved the way for further R-rated comic book capers. Logan (2017) quickly followed with equal success. Keep an eye out for the now expected tongue-in-cheek gibes at Hugh Jackman here. DP2 has a more conventionally linear narrative structure. It imposes the feeling that everything seems more deliberate during this new adventure.
Ryan Reynolds is still the star and clearly relishing his time in the sun as Deadpool. Despite being disguised for most of the film, he was born to play this role and effortlessly makes the character his own again. Naturally funny, he is the perfect fit for the character whether you’re a fan of his brand of comedy or not. There is also a considerably stronger supporting cast and a few welcome cameos to bolster fan excitement and guarantee fervent Internet discussion.
Josh Brolin (currently tormenting the galaxy as Thanos in Infinity War) plays the time-traveling villain Cable with a suitable square-jawed grimace. The seasoned screen actor has demonstrated his ability to ground the heightened emotions and objectives of his recent larger-than-life characters. His role here is no exception.
His on-screen presence is a necessary counterpoint to Reynolds’ wisecracking hero. He anchors the film despite little agency in the final act. Julian Denison (Hunt for the Wilderpeople, 2016) also impresses with his dry but earnest delivery. His performance is nuanced, and his comedic timing is welcome in an overly familiar Hollywood blockbuster.
One technical surprise that director David Leitch delivers in DP2 is the cinematography. From the outset, the film has a dense colour scheme. It combines red, green and yellow washes to give the film a bold and distinctive look. While it falters during some of the more computer-aided fight scenes and is incomparable to Logan’s distinctive visual palate, the cinematography is distinctive and a thoroughly enjoyable part of the film.
Armed with an R-rating for a good reason, DP2 was never intended for kids or the squeamish. This is a different type of comic book movie and it succeeds in separating itself through its style and below-the-belt humour. With the unstoppable storm of comic book heroes currently blowing through cinemas, Reynolds’ portrayal of Deadpool is not quite a break in the weather, but a welcome change for those looking for a foul-mouthed hit of visceral fun.
Summary: Reynolds’ portrayal of Deadpool is not quite a break in the weather, but a welcome change for those looking for a foul-mouthed hit of visceral fun.