This is a movie that understands itself, sets a reasonable goal, and achieves it. That may seem like faint praise, but considering that many movies miss that mark, it’s actually quite an achievement. Deadpool isn’t revolutionary, but it has all the elements necessary to meet fans’ demands and keep them thoroughly entertained.
Element #1: Humor
Deadpool is “The Merc a Mouth.” He is supposed to be a talkative, joking wise-ass, lovable and irritating at the same time. Ryan Reynolds nails it, and the rest of the cast/movie tone is good too. The jokes run the gambit from dick jokes and potty humor to gallows humor and 4th-wall breaking.
Element #2: The 4th Wall
One of the traits that sets Deadpool apart from so many other humorous and/or anti-hero characters is how he breaks the 4th wall, a trait alive and well in this movie. The 4th wall is broken frequently, and other movies by Fox and/or Ryan Reynolds are skewered in the process.
Element #3: R-Rating
Look, blood! People get shot and stabbed and blown up, and there’s actually blood and gore to accompany it! And there’s skin: full-on frontals of naked women, man-butts, and even a faint penis cameo. There are sex scenes – yes, plural – and torture scenes too. Captain America would not approve of this movie.
Element #4: Romance
In the comics Deadpool is not a complete stranger to romance, and the love story they chose for this movie works surprisingly well. I’m not a fan of typical “chick flick” romances, but this is more realistic than sappy, striking a nice tone that actually made me care about it rather than wishing it would just end already.
I think this movie may make production companies rethink their PG-13 vs R stances. Deadpool proves that if done right, you can have your chimichangas and eat them too.
Debate time! There are some debates revolving around the Deadpool movie that I feel the need to jump into.
1.) Deadpool is a poor parody.
This argument says that Deadpool is out to skewer traditional comic book movies, that it’s supposed to make fun of them and do something totally different, but then falls flat or is actually hypocritical because it falls into some of the same tropes it’s making fun of.
Yes, the character Deadpool makes fun of a lot of comic book tropes, namely because he’s aware that he’s in a comic book and therefor has more awareness of said tropes. And yet, Deadpool is a comic book character, just one in a large, traditional comic universe. So while he is able to make fun of it, he’s destined to have a number of similarities with traditional comic book characters/stories. He’s just supposed to give you a wink and a nudge, acknowledge what you’re thinking, and have fun with it.
2.) Deadpool isn’t the first rated-R comic movie.
Apparently some people are mad that so many are praising Deadpool for being rated-R because there are other rated-R comic book movies that came before it. My response: Deadpool is the first FUN rated-R comic book movie. Of the earlier rated-R comic book movies I’ve watched, the only one I found somewhat enjoyable was V for Vendetta. 300 was nothing but a mindless testosterone-fest, and Watchmen was an overhyped, pretentious load of bulls*** that took me 2 attempts to finish. And every older R-rated comic book movie I can think of is serious, dark, and/or depressing.