Review: DEADPOOL (2016) | Casey's Movie Mania | Movie Reviews, Features & Others

Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Review: DEADPOOL (2016)

DEADPOOL may have been spotty in places, but this profanity-laden superhero comedy mostly hits the spot with a barrage of stylised violence and amusing in-jokes.



When the first live-action test footage of DEADPOOL was leaked online two years ago, the fans' responses were overwhelmingly positive. After all, the last time Deadpool character appeared in the much-maligned X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE (2009) was mistreated to the point of blasphemy. Fortunately, former visual effects artist-turned-first time director Tim Miller finally got the tone and the character right based on that demo reel alone. Fast forward to the present day, the highly-anticipated X-MEN spin-off of DEADPOOL has finally arrived. After years of massive hype and anticipation, I'm happy to say the movie mostly delivers.  

WHAT IS IT ALL ABOUT?

Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) is a former Special Forces operative who made a living as a mercenary. He likes to wisecrack a lot and doesn't mind getting his hand dirty with his act of violence. One night, he meets a prostitute named Vanessa (Morena Baccarin) at a bar and falls in love with her. However, their blissful moment is short-lived when Wade finds himself being diagnosed with terminal cancer. His only option for curing his cancer is to accept the offer from a mysterious man-in-a-suit known as the Recruiter (Jed Rees). During the operation, a scientist named Ajax a.k.a. Francis (Ed Skrein) injects Wade with a super-serum that alters his human DNA and activate his mutant genes. Although the serum does cure his cancer, he has to live with an ugly side effect that ruin his outer appearance. Soon, he adopts a new identity as Deadpool and begins his personal mission to hunt down Ajax at all cost.

THE GOOD STUFF

Armed with an R-rating (or "18" for our Malaysia's Film Censorship Board), director Tim Miller is given creative freedom to do whatever he wants, and it truly shows in this movie. The sarcastic opening credit itself, scored to Juice Newton's classic hit single Angel of the Morning, is cheeky enough to provoke laughter. Then there's the well-choreographed action scenes, edited with great fluidity by Julian Clarke, are both visceral and stylish at the same time. Following his tremendous score in last year's MAD MAX: FURY ROAD, Junkie XL's synth-heavy mix of electronica and drumbeat helps enliven the action scenes even more.

Thanks to the frequently witty script written by Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick of the ZOMBIELAND (2009) fame, the movie is jam-packed with enough quips and in-jokes referencing every pop culture from Sinead O'Connor, the TAKEN trilogy, ALIEN 3 to 127 HOURS, as well as X-MEN movies. The jokes come thick and fast, plus best of all, most of them hits the laughing spot.

Of course, DEADPOOL wouldn't have work if it's not for Ryan Reynolds. He certainly born to play the wisecracking titular character and totally owns a role. Whether he's indirectly poking fun at himself, which related his ill-fated involvements in X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE and GREEN LANTERN or breaking the fourth wall with his numerous witty remarks, Reynolds' no-holds-barred performance is the main hook that makes the movie compulsively watchable.

Although Reynolds is undoubtedly the scene-stealer of the show, the supporting actors are also thankfully given ample opportunities to shine with their respective roles. Morena Baccarin shares a wonderful chemistry with Reynolds, while managing to hold her own playing Wade's sassy and sexy partner Vanessa. Ed Skrein, who made little impact in last year's lacklustre reboot of THE TRANSPORTER REFUELED, finally able to prove his worth in the big screen as the sadistic scientist Ajax. Gina Carano, who plays the matchstick-chewing Angel Dust, get to strut her stuff -- mixed martial art, that is -- during a tense and humourous showdown against Colossus. Speaking of Colossus (voiced by Stefan Kapicic), it's a huge sigh of relief to see this often-neglected X-Men member is finally given a proper spotlight like never before. Brianna Hildebrand, in the meantime, manages to pull off an otherwise lesser-known X-Men member of Negasonic Teenage Warhead into a fun and spunky character worth watching for. The rest of the cast -- including T.J. Miller as Wade's best friend Weasel, Karan Soni as taxi driver Dopinder and Leslie Uggams as Wade's elderly blind caretaker Blind Al -- are all given noteworthy supporting performances.

MOST MEMORABLE MOMENT(S)

The car chase and the violent standoff in the bridge is easily the best and most exhilarating action scenes in the movie.

THE BAD STUFF

Albeit all the showy violence and profanity galore, DEADPOOL tends to fall back whenever the movie tries to settle down for quiet moments. This is especially true during some of the movie's love story angles between Wade Wilson and Vanessa. 

FINAL WORDS


Whether you are a die-hard fan of Deadpool comic book or a casual moviegoer, it's not every day we get to see a raunchy yet hard-hitting superhero movie -- or more appropriately, Marvel-related movie -- that doesn't skimp on the sex (though censored here in Malaysia), profanity and violence. Also, don't leave so soon and stay until the end for the post-credit scene.

* This review is written courtesy from 20th Century Fox Malaysia press screening *

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