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'Deadpool 2' Is The Anti-Avengers Movie We Need

Ryan Reynolds has never been more Ryan Reynolds.

Fox

Deadpool 2 is a textbook sequel. It improves on the original's formula while staying decidedly true to its spirit. It's Deadpool 1 on steroids and crystal and cocaine, yes, lots of cocaine. This is a movie put on the planet to entertain us ballistically, like a nuclear weapon would if it were to suddenly spring to life. Don't expect a legendary yarn. Do expect an avalanche of fights, grotesque deaths, jokes, and pop culture references. This is serious 21st century entertainment.

The attention deficient will not have a problem with Deadpool 2. The action is almost non-stop, and when the movie slows down it's only temporary so we can get to know new friends like Domino (Zazie Beetz), who boasts an unlikely superpower Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) doesn't really think is a superpower. They'll just agree to disagree. It's cute. See, this Deadpool sequel is a new breed. While it's sensory overload like the original, it's also a more friendly take on the sardonic, suicidal Marvel superhero created by Rob Liefeld and Fabian Nicieza.

Deadpool 2, directed by David Leitch (John Wick), begins with tragedy and Wade Wilson/Deadpool is lost. He blares Air Supply and wallows in depression, but there are things still worth living for... like revenge. He also finds new purpose protecting a young mutant named Russell (Julian Denison) with a stupid X-Man alter ego and scary powers. 

Deadpool (quite literally) embraces the X-Men in this one. He's no longer the self-righteous, obnoxious Merc with a Mouth from the original film. Teaming up with old friends Colossus (Stefan Kapicic), Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand), and new member Surge (Shioli Kutsuna), Deadpool predictably oversteps and winds up in mutant prison with the kid, who can't help but take a shine to the "clown dressed up like a sex toy."

'Deadpool 2' Takes The Superhero Clown To New Heights
Fox

It's around now that Cable (Josh Brolin), Deadpool's best frenemy from the comics, makes his grand entrance. A time traveling vengeance hunter, Cable wants the kid for Terminator-inspired reasons, but Deadpool just ain't having it. 

Along the way, our hero manages to form his own "X-Force," which is where Domino comes in. She's the biggest scene-stealer in a band that also includes Bedlam (Terry Crews), Shatterstar (Lewis Tan), Zeitgeist (Bill Skarsgård), regular dude Peter (Rob Delaney), and (big star cameo) as Vanisher. There's a special Macgruber-inspired sequence involving this squad you need to see, and then forget as quickly as possible.

'Deadpool 2' Takes The R-Rated Superhero Clown To New Heights
Fox

To be in on the jokes, one should have a expert understanding on everything from Wolverine to Barbra Streisand. The meta humor is present, once again, right from the opening credits. Reynolds' full Ace Ventura verbal arsenal is on display. He's the ultimate fanboy pest as Deadpool taking aim at Batman v Superman, Infinity War, Flashdance, X-Men, Terminator, Yentl... I lost count. The jokes and references never end, which is a good and bad thing. The funny ones, like how Cable is short compared to the comic, are inspired. However the amount of meta-commentary zaps the film of any pathos. It exists like a commercial exists, or an episode of Entourage exists. We feel nothing for these characters because they're so removed from reality.

It's interesting to see Deadpool 2 after Avengers: Infinity War. These are two superhero movies doing very different things. Infinity War goes for the heart unlike any other comic book film, and Deadpool 2 does almost the exact opposite. It's unabashed entertainment. Despite its emptiness, DP2 is not hard to enjoy. It's lovable in most every way thanks to a talented cast led by Reynolds and Beetz, and a sheer willingness to be goofy. Deadpool the clown is back in a major way.

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