Deadpool 2 (2018)

Deadpool 2

Wind Advisory: The super-duper group is formed.

 

Obviously, there are too many quips and jokes and one liners to list in a review of Deadpool 2, and would be redundant. As was the case with the original, the sequel has Ryan Reynolds at the core of its cinematic power. While it is not a masterpiece, it is an upgrade from its predesceor.

The film starts (with a nod to Scorsese’s Casino) with Wade Wilson/Deadpool (Reynolds) right where we left him: fighting crime and coming home to his girlfriend Vanessa (Morena Caccarin). In fact, one of the best things about this film is that it stands by itself, not requiring you to know much about the first film (though there are some inside jokes you would miss). After a tragic event, Deadpool tries his hand with the X-Men , as they try to help a young mutant named Firefist (a well casted Julian Dennison). They soon find out he is being hunted down by Cable (Josh Brolin), who has traveled back in time after the future Firefist has killed his wife and daughter.

What happens from there is for you to discover. There is more than a fair share of crude humor and fourth wall breaking, as well as other film references such as Say Anything. It is yet to be half way through 2018, and Josh Brolin is already set with this as well as Infinity War, giving two performances of impressive strength. Other returning actors include T.J. Miller, Leslie Uggams, and Karan Soni as Deadpool’s friends. New characters include Zazie Beetz as Domino (who, despite Deadpool’s unbelief, is lucky), Shioli Kutsuna as Yukio, and a surprise mutant who the credits say plays himself.

The biggest mistake I made was looking at the cast on IMDB before I saw the film. There are a good amount of cameos that I found out about too soon. Don’t look until after the film. Personally, I know there are a few I missed and need to seek out the second time.

Parents, it should be no surprise that you should know this is not a family film (though Deadpool does disagree on that perspective). There is no nudity (aside from some obscure male nudity) or strong sexual content as there was in the first film. There is, however, a lot of swearing and violence. A whole lot. High School and above.

Despite the film’s flaws (the sentimental scene at the end, though funny, does go long), there is no doubt that the credit scenes (which you would expect) are the funniest scenes in the whole film. They are better than any credit scenes in any film of the past decade. They almost make the price worth paying to see the movie itself, which is not to say the movie is bad. Rather the contrary.

Now if you excuse me, I need to watch Yentl.

 

Overall: Four Stars ****

Life (2017)

Life

Jake Gyllenhaal is one of the crew that discovers new “Life”.

Perhaps this movie rubbed me the wrong way, but boy was I not happy with Life.

Despite a talented cast that includes Ryan Reynolds and Jake Gyllenhaal, some nice special effects, and a (very) few moving visuals, the story offers us nothing we have not seen before (it is basically Alien).

The movie opens with a long (and I mean long) continuous shot of the crew aboard a space craft about to recover a specimen retrieved from Mars. After some careful testing, Hugh (Ariyon Bakare) is able to bring the small amoeba like creature to life. Back on earth, an elementary school was selected to pick the name of the creature, and names it Calvin.

If you have seen the trailer, you know things are about to go wrong, as this creature (who somehow grows eyes) is able to pick off a crew member one by one. Some of these deaths are (in their own weird way), nice to look at. One such crew member has Calvin enter their mouth and literally eat their insides.

Possible the biggest problem I had with the movie was the fact that the trailer truly gave away almost all you need to know. We know that they have to kill this creature (which somehow grows eyes) before it gets to earth, no matter what, so the possibility of survival is very minimal in our minds even before we buy the ticket.

Parents, the movie is rated R, mainly for the violence (which is standard, though shows like The Walking Dead have the same amount) and swearing (a good amount of it, including many F bombs). Depending on your kids, middle schoolers may be ok with it, but I doubt it.

Ok, I won’t give away the ending of this movie, but I need to talk about it. Just when I thought the movie could not get any more standard and boring, they tack on an ending so bizarre and out-of-place that I was thinking the movie’s director (Daniel Espinosa, who is talented) would make M. Nigh Syamalan confused. It is an ending that is on par with the 2001 Planet of the Apes remake by Tim Burton (the one with Mark Wahlberg).

Sorry, but Life is not worth wasting yours.

Overall: One and a half Stars * 1/2

Deadpool (2016)

deadpool

Deadpool fears no one, especially the fourth wall…

It could be argued that Ryan Reynolds may not have just been born to play Wade Wilson/Deadpool, but he was playing him not long after he was out of the womb.

He and director Tim Miller really understand the character, one of the best anti-hero examples of recent years. It is Reynolds that is the real reason to see the film. I only wish the movie gave us a better script that was not completely by the book.

For those who don’t know about the character, Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is diagnosed with multiple cancers. He is offered a chance to beat it, so he leaves his new girlfriend Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) one night to be subjected to treatment. Not all goes well, and, hence, Deadpool is born.

There are definitely many funny moments (a lot of which I will not quote here, for fear of young eyes reading). Ok, I will say one good one. While being taken by Colossus (Stefan Kapicic) and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand) to see Professor X, Deadpool asks, “Stewart or McAvoy?”

Parents, if there were ever a superhero movie not made for children, this is definitely it. Lots of violence, profanity, and sex. Trust the R rating.

I admit I did not laugh as much as I wanted. The story timeline jumping back and forth were unneeded in my mind, and the villain was not very memorable. Still, Reynolds makes the movie worth seeing.

Note: I just had a weird idea of Deadpool hosting the Oscars. Or, more likely, crashing it.

Overall: Three Stars ***