Directed by David Leitch
In February of 2016 I wrote some stuff about Deadpool, the Ryan Reynolds dressed in red and swearing and chopping limbs off movie, not The Dead Pool, the Dirty Harry movie that featured a shirtless Jim Carrey lip synching to Guns N' Roses. Seriously, that's a thing from The Dead Pool. Anyway, I see that I wrote that Deadpool was awesome sauce and amaze balls and @#%$ awesome and almost as much fun than a dozen Golden Lab puppies. There also was a whole bit that somehow went from loving Deadpool to being tazed that I don't understand but I guess I was still high from the rush of that first time seeing Deadpool. And had probably spent some time surfing Reddit that morning.
So, I imagine you asking me as you read this whilst ignoring work and being impressed that I used 'whilst', is Deadpool 2: Electric Boogaloo any good? Where does it lay on the amaze balls, awesome sauce, dozen lab puppies scale that is so important to light film criticism? I'm going to be honest here - Deadpool 2: The Quickening is full on amaze balls and awesome sauce. It is the ostrich chasing two bicyclists down a hill, it is the goat that won't stay locked up, it's the dog grinning when confronted with a chewed-up remote, it's the otter playing with his rocks. And damn I need to get off of Reddit. But, seriously, find the footage of the ostrich chasing the two bicyclists down a hill. It's the best.
Deadpool 2: Back in the Habit is the Some Girls to Deadpool's Exile on Main Street. The first movie was shambolic and messy and if one thing had gone wrong, if one beat had been the tiniest bit off, if anything had been a little off, the entire movie would have fallen apart and Ryan Reynolds would have added another lost film to his superhero resume. It's not like it would have been just a m'eh film, it could have been a full on disaster, like, Green Lantern or Blade Trinity levels of bad. A first time director, an actor who has a lot of kindling on his IMDB page, a character that seems unfilmable. Looking back at Deadpool now it's not just a funny superhero movie, it really is a great comedy, a great film, almost by accident. But back to the Stones metaphor before I completely lose the thread here.
Like I said, the first Deadpool is the superhero genre's Exile on Main Street, messy and shambolic and chaotic that somehow comes together in near perfection. Which, like I said above, makes Deadpool 2: First Blood Part II the Some Girls - slightly more polished, a little less chaotic, a little more tidy and slick but still full of the danger and anarchist spirit. And I seriously need to stop listening to the Stones when I sit down to write these. Anyway. Deadpool 2: Back 2 the Hood is so much fun, has so much heart, has so much eye candy it not just needs to be seen, it needs our love and our sweater on a cold spring day. It really is one of the Great Sequels of Ever.
Deadpool 2: Red, White & Blonde could have been Evil Dead 2 to Evil Dead, essentially a remake with a substantially larger budget and I'm sure Deadpool fans would have been fine with that. But it is so much more than that. Director David Leitch has John Wick and Atomic Blonde and about four and half million stunt coordinator credits under his belt. He brings more of his kinetic action style to Deadpool 2: Back to the Minors, shooting the fights and action scenes with the camera tight in the mix with all of the moving pieces and the choreography and the guns and the things blowing up real good. This non-linear, nearly claustrophobic style, first really seen in John Wick, took John Woo's innovations and pumped them full of steroids and speed and rocket fuel and unleashed them on an action starved world. And it works so well here. There is nothing else like it in the superhero film genre.
Unleashing Mr. Leitch in this sandbox allows for action set pieces that are both intimate and giant pieces of organized chaos. But it also allows for that special other thing that Mr. Leitch has brought to his films, a grounding. I won't be the first to point this out, hell, I think I'm probably stealing this from Ryan Reynolds, but the first Deadpool was a love story with dismemberment and superheroes and dick jokes. Deadpool 2: The Squealquel is a movie about the importance of family. With dismemberment and superheroes and dick jokes.
The plot of Deadpool 2: Money Never Sleeps is a bit convoluted and isn't as basic as the first movie's. And maybe it could have used a more streamlined story, but I don't think it would have taken us for the ride it took us on. We needed the ride to get this amazing ensemble cast together. We needed the ride to make us feel it when that ending is landed. Look, the superhero genre isn't full of that many great direct sequels. Iron Man 2 and Thor Dark World I'm looking in your direction. Deadpool 2: The Phantom Menace stands heads and shoulders above nearly all of them. And I am starting to steer this boat a little too close to Spoiler Cove so I'm going to wrap this up.
Is Deadpool 2: Quantum of Solace worth your hard earned monies? @#%$ right it is. Gather up your friends and family and loved ones and go see what may be the family film of the year. Just remember - there is no universe anywhere, in the limitless count of multiverses, where Deadpool 2: Jason Takes Manhattan is appropriate for children. Do not take your child to see this movie. You're making the rest of us uncomfortable. And know that when you're dragging your crying child out as the pile of dismembered limbs that will haunt their nightmares grows larger, well, we're all going to be making fun of you. Other than that, go, have fun. And join us on the mountaintops and in the treetops as we yell "I @#%$ love Deadpool 2: The Godfather Part II"