The Merc with the Mouth is back and this time...he's got a Celine Dion song. When Wade Wilson (Ryan Reynolds) tries to help a troubled young mutant named Russell (Julian Dennison), he's set on a collision course with Thanos, I mean Cable (Josh Brolin) - a time travelling cyborg looking to change the future. In order to protect Russell, Wade will need to assemble the X-Force, a team of colourful individuals, and one guy with a moustache.
When I first heard that Tim Miller had left the project due to "creative differences" with Ryan Reynolds, I was more than a bit concerned that a promising new franchise was going the way of Universal's Dark Universe! Said concern started to fade with the announcement that David Leitch - who's work I'm a big fan of - had been hired to replace Miller. And I'm pleased to say he didn't disappoint, having used his considerable experience to create some phenomenal action sequences that fit perfectly with the Deadpool aesthetic. Granted he had a lot of help in the form of writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, their excellent script and star Ryan Reynolds who pretty much lives and breathes the character.
Deadpool 2 opens up the universe we caught a glimpse of in the first movie, but without changing the overall scale. Despite the record-breaking success of Deadpool, this franchise remains the smaller, scrappier underdog to the mainstream X-Men movies, a wise choice in my opinion. The limited budget of the first movie prevented it from really diving into the X-Men universe, but it helped to create a darker, grittier world for Deadpool to inhabit. And if Deadpool 2 had done what most sequels do with their bigger budgets - ramp up the scale and spectacle without doing anything new - something would have been lost. Instead, Leitch and co. used the bigger budget on some improved CGI, a bigger cast (watch out for some interesting cameos) and generally making a movie that lives up to the first.
This time round Deadpool is joined by a whole host of colourful new friends, not to mention all of his old ones as well. Julian Dennison is brilliant as Russell who is struggling with a lot more than just his mutant ability. The young mutant is in a very bad place both figuratively and literally, something that Dennison expertly portrays. Zazie Beetz brings swagger and wit to her performance as the more than lucky Domino. She is badass in the fight scenes and more than holds her own against Reynolds. As for Josh Brolin, well it may be his second comic book movie role of the year but he does something very different yet equally brilliant with Cable. Although, much like his performance as Thanos, he is able to make the character very relatable. There is a soft side to the gruff cyborg and Brolin is able to explore that. But the standout of the new characters was Rob Delaney's 'Peter' - the guy who saw the ad. He's hilarious in every scene and exudes cool with that incredible moustache!
As much as Deadpool 2 is about the formation of the X-Force, it is primarily about...well Deadpool. After all he is the one we want to see, and we certainly see plenty of him - maybe too much if you catch my meaning. Reynolds' performance is indicative of how in tune he is with the character. I often wonder where Ryan Reynolds ends and Wade Wilson begins! Deadpool, by his own admission is not a hero. He may want to do some good every now and then, but he goes about it in very much his own twisted way. The result of which is a lot of hilarious carnage.
It's safe to say that if you enjoyed Deadpool, you're going to enjoy this one too. Deadpool 2 is just more of what you love; balls to the wall action and over-the-top, crude humour wrapped up in a fairly grounded, compelling story. And whilst I was disappointed by the plot surrounding one of the characters, it certainly wasn't enough to ruin the movie. Especially considering the movie almost fixes the problem by the end anyway. Another supreme outing for the Merc with the Mouth that will only leave you wanting more. Don't forget to stay for the mid-credits scene!!!
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