On Feb. 12, 2016 Marvel’s Merc with a Mouth, Deadpool (alter ego of Wade W. Wilson), debuted in his first starring roll on the big screen. Ryan Reynolds has suited up as the Regenerating Degenerate before, but 2016’s Deadpool film made it easy to forget the atrocities committed in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.
Deadpool set the record for an R rated domestic opening at $150 million, earning the red band label within the first minutes of the film. Violence, nudity, vulgar language, and overall crass-ness set the tone for the rest of the movie. Reynolds delivers quips in Deadpool’s signature style relentlessly, poking fun at Marvel, pop culture, and even his own acting career. Comedy often pervades some of the film’s darkest scenes. The story dives into the anti-hero’s grim beginnings, but it breaks the monotony of typical origin stories with creative use of the timeline.
Deadpool, known for breaking the fourth wall in the comics, uses this as a device to unravel the twisting and turning plot with Memento-like finesse. Supporting characters weave in and out of the story, enhancing the movie without distracting from Reynolds’ performance. T.J. Millers’ character, Weasel, is perfect comic relief, injecting artfully crafted comedic timing to rival that of the star’s. Vanessa, Deadpool’s romantic interest, is as irreverently lovable as Wade Wilson himself. Morena Baccarin, known as Firefly/Serenity’s Inara, keeps Vanessa fun and interesting, even through the tired damsel in distress trope.
Uninitiated movie-goers may want to check out some related media before going to see Deadpool. The comedy is best received with some background knowledge, including the past superhero works of Reynolds and the other Fox owned Marvel property, X-Men/Wolverine. That isn’t to say there isn’t a little something for everyone. Zombieland writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick’s expert lampooning will encourage laughs from even those dragged into the theater by their superhero fanatic friends.
Superhero fans and comedy lovers alike will find great fun and enjoyment in Deadpool. The relentless one liners never tire, the violent action is flashy and enjoyable, and the supporting cast is fantastic. It is important to note, however, that even though other superhero movies may be family friendly, Deadpool is not a movie to take the kids to see. This movie is rated R for good reason. Even if it isn’t child-friendly, mom, dad, and anyone else of age will have a chimichanga truckload of fun.