Deadpool 2 (2018)

Well, the Summer Blockbuster season is in full swing yet again…and ‘DP2’ fits in perfectly! It’s a nifty sequel to a surprisingly successful first film that took chances and delighted audiences with it’s tonally perfect (ie crass) presentation and winking-at-the-audience execution. And if you liked the first one…you WILL get a kick out of #2!
‘Deadpool 2’ catches up with ‘Wade’ / ‘Deadpool’ (Ryan Reynolds) and ‘Vanessa’ (Morena Baccarin) as they plan to fire up a little family unit action in the ole homestead. T’was not to be, however, as they are ambushed by goons who pop by for a visit and promptly get the murderous Wrath of The Deadpool unleashed upon their stupid asses. ‘Wade’ again grudgingly accepts help from ‘Colossus’ (Stefan Kapicic) and ‘Nega-Sonic Teenage Warhead’ (Brianna Hildebrand) while trying out as a ‘trainee’ member of the X-Men, as he searches for somewhere to belong. In short order, he gets himself incarcerated while trying to defuse a dangerous situation involving a young, angry and emotionally unstable ‘fire casting’ mutant named ‘Russell’ (Julian Dennison). While all this is happening, a cyborg super-soldier from a post-apocalyptic future named ‘Cable’ (Josh Brolin) arrives to exact revenge on a mutant in our ‘today’ that will ultimately be responsible for the deaths of his wife and daughter. This puts him, ‘Deadpool’ and a selection of new mutants on a really violent, and hilarious, collision course.
Quite simply, if you liked the first movie…you WILL like this one. I can’t make it much clearer than that. Despite the fact that original director Tim Miller didn’t opt to return (he and Reynolds didn’t see eye to eye on the franchises direction), this movie ties right in with the tone and atmosphere of the first one, now under the capable direction of David Leitch (‘John Wick’).
As noted above, several players from the first flick pop back up to reprise their roles. On top of Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, Stefan Kapicic and Brianna Hildebrand, we also get back Karan Soni as the trusty and determined cab driver ‘Dopinder’, Lesley Uggams as the armed and maternal ‘Blind Al’ and TJ Miller, as ‘Weasel’…aka TJ Miller, coupled with new faces like Zazie Beetz as ‘Domino’ and, of course, Brolin. There’s also a surprisingly number of amusing cameos that pop up all over the 2 hour run-time, some of which caught me right off guard (looking at YOU, ‘Vanisher’).
Even though ‘DP2’ is a full-blown comedy, it’s also an uproarious action flick that kicks all kinds of ass! Just like we saw with ‘John Wick’ (2014) and ‘Atomic Blonde’ (2017), former stuntman David Leitch again goes back into his bag of stunt tricks to give us some hard-hitting and inventive action sequences, of which there are many. Gunfire and explosions abound!
One aspect that I appreciated was the fact that, for all the quips and sight-gags (which are nearly constant), there was enough ‘serious’ content happening around ‘Deadpool’ for it to still be considered a legitimate super-hero movie, with a surprisingly amount of heart packed in with all the guns n ammo. Just when things could’ve gone too far, they rein it back to make sure the story isn’t suffering for the sake of some more jokes, and they ride this line all the way through.
As a Canadian, just like our boy Ryan Reynolds, it was cool to see a lot of the nearby city of Vancouver (I live two cities away) used again, only this time without much in the way of digital augmentation. Now I know that Vancouver shows up constantly in dozens of shows and movies every year, but for some reason, it was cool seeing areas that are readily familiar in THIS Big Budget Summer Tent-pole, especially when they just kinda left it as is, without adding digital buildings and such to hide the Vancouverness of, well…Vancouver. In keeping with this, we also get a good dose of ‘Canada’ jokes and references sprinkled along the way, which was just fine with me…eh.
If I had to bring any Negatives to the table, I think the run-time could’ve been trimmed by 10 or 15 minutes. Now I know it’s already not some ludicrously-length’d epic of a movie, but there was one point where the sheer volume of quips and gags felt like they were on the verge of out-staying their welcome, and I wasn’t laughing anymore. But then violent kick-assery took over and I was invested all over again. The point is, there’s a slightly bloated and trudging section mid-way through the 2nd Act that maybe could’ve been tightened up in Editing. But it wasn’t a total deal-breaker.
All in all, I’ve already said it best…if you liked ‘Deadpool’ (2014), you WILL like this sequel. The first one simply wasn’t a flash in the pan and ‘DP2’ proves it. There’s a talented, self-deprecating team behind these movies who seem to have figured out the winning formula and that definitely works to our, the movie-going public’s,  advantage. ‘DP2’ is crudely funny, bloodily violent, wildly action-packed and appropriately juvenile…with a tender touch beneath it all, while also being bigger in production and ‘scope’. I hope they can keep that motif rolling along for a 3rd entry, which there most certainly will be, given it’s impressive Box Office take on the opening weekend. And when that next ‘Merc with The Mouth’ movie hits the Big Screen, I will be there to laugh in the darkness and pump my fist in the air as really hilarious and horrible things play out for our sick and twisted amusement.

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