20160213

A film review: "It's 'Deadpool' Time! Come on, grab your friends (but NOT kids)!"

Origin: NOT from X-Men Origins! It's USA! USA! (But I'm a Canadian, goddamnit!)
Language: English, motherfu--! (Oops, sorry; wrong movie)
Director: Tim Miller (... is awesome? I'm outta line here)
Producers: Simon Kinberg, Laura Shuler Donner, The Handsome Ryan Reynolds (YAY!)
Writers: Paul Wernick and Rhett Reese! The Walking Dead, look it up (Oops! Wrong one again...)!
Casts: The Ryan Reynolds Show! featuring Morena Baccarin, T.J. Miller, Leslie Uggams, Ed Skrein,
Gina Carano, Brianna Hildebrand and Stefan Kapičić!
Genres: Deadpool! I mean... superhero? No, he's a jerk! Also... a very morbid comedy.
Release: ALMOST Valentine's Day 2016! Damn it!
Studios: Marvel Entertainment (yes, Le Marvelous one!), Kinberg Genre, The Donners' Company
Distributor: Good Guy 20th Century Fox!





Damn it! Stop messing with my format, Deadpool! Go bother the other audiences or something and let me review your movie in peace! Geeze!

Oh yeah! I just realised that this is the only successful superhero film review I have ever done! I mean, I tried before, but it falters so damn badly, I just ditched it altogether. I decided to fully go with this 20th Century Fox-produced one, mainly because... it's different. I still love you though, Marvel Cinematic Universe. Don't worry!

Anyway, that pendejo who messed with my brief description of the movie under his euphemism for penis up there proves a solid point. As you can tell, 20th Century Fox a.k.a. Fox, the same studio who got some love for sorta reinventing the X-Men franchise (which I haven't properly seen in its entirety as the following are solely judged by the franchise's critical receptions) in a good way through Days of Future Past and in an off-rails kind of way through the abomination called X-Men Origins: Wolverine - where they totally shoved imaginary katanas up Deadpool's ass and totally sewn shut the mouth of, I don't know, the "Merc With a MOUTH," and gave him all the wrong superpowers - managed to finally produce a novel attempt at a reboot of the failure of the latter. Because of this, we forgive you for those sins (and that includes Fant-FOUR-Stic), dear Fox... for now.

Together with Tim Miller (a VFX artist turned a newbie director responsible for the out-of-thin-air test footage and of course the film itself) as well as Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick (the duo who brought you the pop culture-ridden screenplay of Zombieland), Ryan Reynolds have somewhat delivered the closest representation of one of the most widely celebrated fan-favourite in the Marvel pantheon of characters. As a toddler comic geek, I approve this shit! What an impressive debut by Miller and a comeback by Reynolds!

Does it live up to the hype the studio have constantly pumping out while counting down the release of this most anticipated superhero film of early 2016? Well, let's find out!

The plot? It's a bit overdone honestly; it's another origin story, as any other superhero films named after the protagonist should. In Deadpool, after Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) met the love of his life Vanessa (Morena Baccarin), Francis Freeman / Ajax (Ed Skrein) put him through an experiment that Wilson agreed to participate that was supposed to heal a terminal cancer he didn't even know he has. The side effects include, well... a lasagna-textured skin and accelerated healing powers. Because of that, Wade takes on the Deadpool persona as advised by his best friend Weasel (T.J. Miller) in hopes that he could track Ajax to get even and find a cure to his itch... all while leaving a massive trail of blood and bodies along the way.

Told ya. Way simple. Even the locations and settings are limited. While there are other previously unseen locations, those that were seen in the promos are exactly here in the film. But thanks to Tim Miller's experiences as a VFX artist and the brilliant wordplay by the screenwriters, they managed to enhance audiences' experience through masterful visual effects, camera works, and quirky writing to mask the apparent flaws that the film have.

Here in Deadpool, Tim Miller managed to control his VFX expertise by not cementing CGI all over the place. To my surprise, most of Ryan Reynold's stunts actually looks practical that looks mostly identical to his moves from the test footage. Oh, and good lord! Those eyes! In the comics and non-live action media, his eyes move to express his emotions. But for no reason whatsoever, in this live action film, they actually moved those eyes! Also, Colossus never went to his human mode! Since this is a literal adaptation of a comic book, much like Edgar Wright's Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, who gives a shit about why did those things happen anyway? You just don't feel like questioning those things because you're having such a damn good time!

Next up, the plot. Instead of a linear storytelling, the film does the opposite in order to, I think, preserve the Deadpool-ness of the movie... or else, it would definitely go to the route of the very film that Wade made fun of, Warner Bros' ill-received Green Lantern (which Reynolds previously starred in as Hal Jordan, the Green Lantern that the film focused on), and that would be very embarrassing. This approach, in my honest opinion, works way better here in Deadpool than the gritty reboot of the Man of Steel, a DC feature which reboot the films of their other property Superman. While it is about the character is diagnosed cancer (as the subject, if I look closely, kinda hits home in a way), Deadpool is not a sappy melodrama all the way (although there's a tinge of that at times). One could definitely identify it as a very edgy feature-length #FuckCancer campaign. With all that's been said, I admit that this film is nowhere near as complex or involving as Tarantino's works in terms of its similar structure, but yet still adequately done and doesn't try to confuse the audiences with too much details despite being aimed at adults.

All of that brings me to another obvious aspect that deserved to be lauded: the writing. As expected from the guys who penned Zombieland, it was fun to watch the characters wisecrack each other with fast-paced and comically vulgar dialogues only the most savvy pop culture worshipers could grin or chuckle heavily to. As a semi-follower of pop culture, I laughed at some of it. But no worries though; for everyone else, it does have its fair share of physical comedy (and crude ones at that!). Also, thanks to the fourth wall-breaking aspect of the film, the writing doesn't only apply to the words coming out of the characters' mouth, but also the visual gags in the film; these are illustrated through the balls-out funny opening credits, shit tonne of Easter eggs, fast-moving cameras, clever transitions throughout most of the scenes, and oddball choices of licensed music in the vein of Marvel Studio's Guardians of the Galaxy and original ones by Junkie XL of Mad Max: Fury Road fame. Because of these ingenious ways of circumventing a lack of plot due to the small scale of its story and budget, it makes Deadpool a highly entertaining treat.

Those in turn contribute a hell lot to the performance of the rockstar of the show, Ryan Reynolds, who totally nailed the role he worked so hard to get right for years. Really! He's like the only guy I can think of that could play a Canadian mercenary right now (as he himself is interestingly an actual Canadian), just like Hugh Jackman who is unmistakably Logan / Wolverine (although Jackman's nationality is questionable... and Deadpool hates this guy [Jackman, NOT Logan!] with a passion!) or Robert Downey Jr. who is unmistakably Tony Stark /  Iron Man. Also, good job on casting the beautiful Morena Baccarin as his girlfriend and the emotional center the film needs that is NOT your typical damsel in distress. Other than that, T.J. Miller is also spot on as Weasel. The others like Ajax, Gina Carano's Angel Dust, Brianna Hildebrand's Negasonic Teenage Warhead (damn it, that's a cool name!) and Stefan Kapičić's Colossus (his thick Russian accent and brand of cheesy words are tangy and awesome!)? I don't blame them for not getting that much development, since this is The Ryan Reynolds Show after all. But I appreciate their participation in the action sequences nonetheless; those glorious, LOVELY action sequences!

My verdict? Go and watch it! Before the Merc hunts you down! Even if you don't fancy the Marvel superhero world, treat it as if it's a Zombieland sequel or just have a good time if off-colour humour and gore are your ideas of such session that is. Forget its shallowness. It's Deadpool! Just enjoy him! Good job on blurring the lines on the idea of a superhero film, dear Fox, Miller, and Reynolds! Can't wait for more money-milking goodness from you, ye darn asshats!

P/S:
  1. As practiced by Marvel Studios, Fox also decided to throw in the good old post-credits scene. So, as usual, please stay after the credits folks. 
  2. Also, don't be a douchebag, dear parents, trolls, and blind haters; it's Deadpool, and CLEARLY LABELED 18 by the censorship board (or R in the 'States, or whatever the corresponding ratings are according to your region). So please, PLEASE don't ruin this for those who are LONGING to see it! Educate yourselves first, as superhero films are not all rainbows and sunshine (though Deadpool actually have those, but was used in a lewd way, so... yeah), because, yes... there ARE such things as ADULT COMICS!

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