By Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)
Ryan Reynolds had a crazy, mixed up career in superhero movies. His past appearances as Green Lantern, or Deadpool .5 in X-Men Origins: Wolverine were harshly criticized, In Blade: Trinity, I paid attention. As a handsome and talented actor, he is second to none. As a voice over talent, he made Guy (the smooth as silk boyfriend in The Croods), a fun focus. I knew he has a terrific sense of comic timing. Translating that to Deadpool, the merc with the mouth, and anyone can clearly tell he is having fun with the character. He totally owns it!
Gutsier out-there comic book movies with the R rating needs to be made (hint: bring Lobo to the big screen). Whatever the joke which was removed because of the pending Fox-Disney deal, I hope it can surface just so I can see how badly that scene would have ruffled feathers. This movie is simply terrific with all the meta jokes made and is worth revisiting to catalogue them all.
In this movie, when life shoots you down, Deadpool should fight back instead of giving up. He wants to commit suicide. He has no reason to live when the love of his life is gone. When he has a healing factor like Wolverine’s, the only way to end it is to deactivate those mutant genes.
Instead, certain friends visit to offer sympathy and hope. With this plot, I was very surprised at how well the Colossus I know from the comics got translated over. He developed his empathy from Kitty Pryde. She’s also had encounters with Deadpool too, but none of them was hugely dramatic. Thankfully and confirmed is the fact that director Tim Miller wants to put her into the film canon proper. Recasting the role which has been played by two different actresses in the past is not an issue, for those who have seen the film already. The multiverse continuity is a mess and anyone new can come in.
When considering this character is heavily involved with Colossus, she can give Deadpool the lessons needed in charm school and tie all the other films together. The subplot about how Colossus wants the Merc to become an X-men is explored in better depth in this work than the previous, but when he commits a cardinal faux pas of being a superhero, he’s tossed into jail and has to deal. Rusty Collins (Julian Dennison), a mutant with pyrokinetic abilities, becomes an unlikely companion. Wade’s only experience with life was through the school of hard knocks, and he thinks imparting the same wisdom to the boy makes sense. Well, that’s before he learns about what the youth becomes from a visitor (also a soldier) from the future, Cable (Josh Brolin)
This character’s origins may not be from the comics. Only time will tell if he’s the son of Scott Summers (Cyclops) and Madelyne Pryor (a clone of Jean Grey). To get to this backstory will require a massive flashback sequence and a tie-in with the upcoming X-Men movie, The Dark Phoenix, where the outcome sees Scott moving on and meeting the doppelganger. Instead, this film offers an in-the-now introduction. He is military. Brolin is perfect in the role, and his character development lays in how much he sorely misses his family. He lost his wife and child to the adult Rusty in a hellbent future. Instead of wanting to rewrite the timeline, he wants revenge.
Deadpool and Cable make for a terrific team. They are the muscle while the other characters, especially Domino (Zazie Beetz) is stealth. She has incredible luck as her talent, and the X-Force (the team assembled to deal with a berserk Rusty) are so ragtag, the question of whether a standalone film will emerge out of this film is in question.
Rusty is the centrepiece of this film, and his desire for revenge; he was treated poorly at the orphanage he is from. His maltreatment from a religious zealot had me assuming this place will get revisited again in the upcoming New Mutants movie. This horror film teases at ghosts and youths seeking escape. The official synopsis suggests past sins, but it’s not of what Illyana Rasputin is capable of (in the comics, she is the queen of a demon realm), but rather in where this facility exists. It must have a cover to accept “new students.” The fact she may be the main protagonist sets the tone of this work well. The cameo will most likely be limited to seeing Colossus come help save the day.
At the end of Deadpool 2, the villain ends up not being killed. He will learn from his mistakes. Although where this franchise will go next can be anywhere. The sequences during the credits suggest free reign, but the ultimate question is if this mercenary will ever become an X-men? This thread needs to be tied up.
4½ Stars out of 5