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If you look at Wade Wilson’s latest R-rated misadventure as a satire of what the average sequel is or tries to do, then Deadpool 2 is a significantly better movie. It’s already great, about on par with the original, but you can’t shake the odd feeling that there needs to be a bit more from the merc’s new outing. That’s telling, because DP2 goes places you didn’t think it would go (while also hoping secretly it would), yet also shows some occasional, surprising restraint. Perhaps Reynolds and co. are saving some material for the X-Force movie and maybe Deadpool 3 and maybe maybe even his glorious entry into the MCU. If only Comcast weren’t in the way.
As the previews indicate, Wade Wilson ala Deadpool, wants to build a family with his girlfriend, Vanessa. But how can a quirky and possibly insane Canadian mutant anti-superhero possibly be a good parent? He hardly seems fit to be within 50 yards of “role model.” That’s the dilemma that Wade confronts in this feature, more dangerous than the mutant cyborg time traveler from the future who suspiciously has the same voice as a certain purple people beater from Summer’s other big superhero tentpole (wink).
It’s that intentionally cliche crisis that gives a movie with some very dark and harsh humor and content a seemingly kind heart, one who in its own gonzo way, wants to make fun of the tropes and eat its cake too. Whether Deadpool 2 succeeds is very subjective, and not that surprising as comedy is the most subjective film genre after all. It mostly works in the end, especially with a third act that is hilarious yet serious enough to make its point. Even if it sorta fails in some ways, at least you can feel the effort.
As the last movie proved, Deadpool is all about “maximum effort.” While DP remains the star of the show, the supporting cast gives us other things to involve our attention and thus make the man in red-and-black not the biggest scenery chewer. Returning favorites like Colossus and Dopinder feel appropriately evolved in character with the former learning to cautiously embrace a smidge of Wilson’s chaotic method and the latter desiring a comically darker line of work than cab driver, much to Deadpool’s surprising and relieving horror. New players like the time traveler Cable and new team mate Domino are the true new additions that make DP2 feel like a sequel that builds more than copies. Cable is as expected, a surly, vengeful straight man whose motivation reeks of a plotline from Looper. Domino, on the other hand, with her luck ability, is almost more enjoyable a character than Pool’ himself. She is indeed, “the strong, independent woman type” that has become a somewhat sadly polarizing archetype these days. Her mutant ability to manipulate luck however, and her almost disinterested manner makes her effortlessly awesome and a character that I would love to see maybe more so in the future than the titular protagonist.
Deadpool 2 does suffer a bit in pacing despite its humor and excellent action sequences, and its sluggishness can make you question if this is going to be as great a time as the first movie was. It does in its own way, through some legitimately hilarious yet shocking moments. Whether it is the presentation of Deadpool’s homegrown mutant team to compete with the X-men, X-Force, which includes a middle-aged guy who is not a mutant, or some surprising characters showing up whether in cameos or full on roles, I can’t say Deadpool 2 wasn’t able to impress. The question we’ll have to decide going forward is how impressive the film is, when it stacks up to the original, and other superhero fare and even other comedies. The future does seem bright for Wade and friends, so at the very least there is room for more good and not so “good” fun to be had. Deadpool still has something to prove, and that’s a good thing indeed.