Directed by David Leitch
Written by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick, Ryan Reynolds
Starring Ryan Reynolds, Josh Brolin, Zazie Beetz, Brianna Hildebrand, Morena Baccarin, Leslie Uggams, Julian Dennison, Karan Soni, Stefan Kapicic, T.J. Miller
20th Century Fox
Rated R | 119 Minutes
Release Date: May 18, 2018
A review of Deadpool 2 is an exercise in futility. You already know if you’re going to like it or not, the only real question is “how much?” You know you’ll laugh, again though, “how much?” I don’t want to spoil any of the jokes, quotes, or guest appearances, so what exactly do I write in this review??? I’ll try to answer the above mentioned questions in the most Deadpool way I can: staring at camera, winking… “A f*ck lot” and “Laughed till I peed blood.” Ok… maximum effort!
Deadpool 2 once again stars Ryan Reynolds as Wade Wilson, the 4th wall-breaking, merc with the mouth who spends his days tracking and brutally slaying an international array of baddies and cracking jokes on Hugh Jackman, Ryan Reynolds’ filmography, and really all superhero movie conventions. This time, however, after an early dose of reality, Wade realizes he may in fact have to accept certain conventions, amongst these, a team-up with the X-Men.
This goes really badly in a typically Deadpool way, except the film accidentally or not stumbles into a painfully realistic morale situation made especially prevalent as I’m writing this in the wake of yet another school shooting in the U.S. that’s left a number of innocent people dead. The main story of the sequel is based around Russell (Julian Dennison of Hunt for the Wilderpeople), a young teen who’s mutant ability (FireFist) is about to be on full display when he burns down the abusive orphanage he was raised in and kills the evil headmaster (Eddie Marsan) in an event that triggers a downward spiral that will eventually kill the family of future cyborg, half Terminator/half Grumpy old man, Cable (Josh Brolin in his second monster opening in a month!).
Whether director David Leitch and the writers realized it, they made a film about an abused teen who wants to destroy his “school” and the two lead adults want to a) talk him down and help him or b) kill him on sight with no room for debate. This is a fascinating argument to be had in a country losing more innocent kids to school shootings than soldiers to armed combat.
OK, enough seriousness, back to the movie. Leitch, a former stunt coordinator who directed the action film Atomic Blonde last year crafts some amazing sequences here. My favorite is where Deadpool and his new recruits in X-Force must helicopter in to save Russell on a prison transport from Cable. His action choreography blends perfectly with Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick, and Reynolds’ script managing to play for full tear-inducing belly laughs and gritty gun and grind violence.
The supporting cast, as in Part 1, is fantastic. Morena Baccarin, TJ Miller, Brianna Hildebrand, Leslie Uggams, and Stefan Kapicic all have great moments, but the real standout here is newcomer Zazie Beetz as Domino. She has the unique mutant power of luck and the filmmakers have so much fun bringing that to life. Beetz was more than enough of a side character, but we also get to meet the X-Force team through a series of hilarious job interviews that even sees regular guy Peter (Rob Delaney) enlist. I won’t spoil it, but the helicopter scene was one of my all-time funniest scenes. As my friend Jodi said, “I laugh-cried”!
Deadpool 2 is laugh-till-you’re-in-pain funny, shockingly emotional, surprisingly topical, and has enough cameos and HOLY CRAP moments for those who are simply there for that and nothing more. And let’s just say it aloud… it has the greatest post-credit sequence in movie history. No ifs, no ands, no buts.
Is Deadpool 2 better than the first… who cares? It’s fucking awesome and needs to be seen.
Follow me on Twitter.