Film Review: Anti-Heroism of ‘Deadpool’ Revels in Sass & Violence

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CHICAGO – It was inevitable that we would get an “R-rated” superhero movie, and “Deadpool” fits the bill with its swears, violence and a little sex/nudity. It also has Ryan Reynolds as that hero, doing his “Van Wilder” smarmy act to the nth degree. How that all works will determine how you like the film.

HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

There are several dead spots in “Deadpool,” including a prolonged sequence that might fit in with the torture porn of the “Saw” movies. But the Marvel Studios film – based on a hero created in 1991 – contains a lot of wise guy humor, the breaking of the “fourth wall” to talk directly to the audience and general anarchy, as it makes fun of the whole superhero genre. It also has a manic energy, and if the special effects were taken out, it might have passed as a 1980s/early ‘90s punk independent film about down-and-out freaks trying to be superheroes. There are many levels to explore in this film, which includes the general acceptance or rejection of the premise.

Wade (Ryan Reynolds) is a small-time hood trying to go straight, and falls in love with exotic dancer Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) during that transition. He also finds out he has inoperable cancer, so chooses to leave his relationship to die alone. While stewing in his sorrow, a mysterious man has been profiling him, and offers him a cure through a mad scientist named Ajax (Ed Skrein) and his experimental drug therapy. The process is torture porn, but in the end Wade’s body becomes self healing, and Deadpool is born.

The newly minted “hero” has two goals – to find Ajax to get revenge for the torture of the treatment and a debilitating after effect, and to find Vanessa. Along the way he hooks up with bartender Weasel (T.J. Miller), and a couple of X-Men – the ones budgeted for the film, as the joke goes – metal man Colossus (voice of Stefan Kapicic) and “Negasonic Teenage Warhead” (Brianna Hildebrand).

“Deadpool” is in theaters everywhere. Featuring Ryan Reynolds, T.J. Miller, Morena Baccarin, Stefan Kapicic, Brianna Hildebrand and Ed Skrein. Screenplay by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. Directed by Tim Miller. Rated “R”

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Deadpool”

Ryan Reynolds
Ryan Reynolds as a Different Kind of Hero in ‘Deadpool’
Photo credit: Paramount Pictures

StarContinue reading for Patrick McDonald’s full review of “Deadpool”

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