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Laramie Movie Scope: Deadpool 2

It recaptures the magic of the first one

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by Robert Roten, Film Critic
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May 25, 2018 – This sequel avoids the worst of the problems seen in many sequels, and manages to recapture the comedy, if not the charm, of the original 2016 surprise hit film. The success of the sequel, of course, is no surprise.

I was afraid that the freewheeling, daring nature of the original would be abandoned in this sequel because the stakes are so much higher for this film. Higher stakes might make for more conservative, less risky filmmaking choices, but this film manages to duplicate much of the self-referential, self-mocking humor of the original. The stakes are higher in this film, not just because the expectations for success are higher, but because the film's production budget is almost twice that of the original.

The star of the film, Ryan Reynolds, AKA Deadpool, was not a big movie star prior to the first Deadpool movie. Reportedly, he was given a $10 million bonus after that film was a surprise hit. Now, he is probably getting a more typical movie star salary (he also has a writing credit for this film) along with Josh Brolin, who plays film's main antagonist, Cable (Brolin is also playing the villain Thanos in the contemporary hit movie “Avengers: Infinity War”). Bigger salaries help boost the cost of this sequel.

The film starts out with funny credits, similar to those in the original film, although the novelty of that approach has worn off. Like the original, there are also some (literal) shots taken at earlier less-successful films starring Ryan Reynolds, including “Green Lantern.” There are also some mocking references to Marvel's rival, D.C. Comics (Green Lantern is a D.C. Comics character) and many other popular culture and movie jokes, including an “X-Force” reference to “Black Panther.”

Comedy aside, this is a darker, more serious film than the original with the death of a central character, attempted suicide of the main character, and a villain who wants to murder a young boy because of something that boy grows up to do as an adult in the future (this is a time travel plot device). But what time travel takes away, it can give back, as witnessed in a number of time travel movie plots. The whole idea of using time travel to correct past mistakes is taken to comedic extremes in this film.

Like the original, most of the characters in the X-Men franchise are absent (except for one brief cameo scene). Colossus (voiced by Stefan Kapicic) and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (played by Brianna Hildebrand, reprising her role) return in this sequel. These “X-Force” characters are joined by the very lucky Domino (played by Zazie Beetz) and others in a daring rescue mission. Look quick for a brief, funny appearance by Brad Pitt as “Vanisher.” There is another quick cameo in this film by Matt Damon.

After some supernatural post-life experiences, and a glimpse into the future, Deadpool is convinced that he must rescue a young mutant boy, Firefist (played by Julian Dennison of “Hunt for the Wilderpeople”) who is in great danger. Deadpool rounds up a team, his X-Force, and goes off to rescue the boy, despite divided loyalties on his rescue team.

Oddly enough, Deadpool, who was not really a hero in the first film, becomes a hero in this film, by getting “his heart into the right place.” Like everything else in this film, Deadpool's heroism is played for laughs, but there are moments in this film that are moving as well. This is a worthy sequel, and an impressive directoral effort by David Leitch (“Atomic Blonde”). Stick around after the credits start rolling, there are the usual funny scenes inserted after the main part of the film ends. This film rates a B.

Click here for links to places to buy or rent this movie in digital formats, or to buy the soundtrack, posters, books, even used videos, games, electronics and lots of other stuff. I suggest you shop at least two of these places before buying anything. Prices seem to vary continuously. For more information on this film, click on this link to The Internet Movie Database. Type in the name of the movie in the search box and press enter. You will be able to find background information on the film, the actors, and links to much more information.

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Copyright © 2018 Robert Roten. All rights reserved.
Reproduced with the permission of the copyright holder.
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(If you e-mail me with a question about this or any other movie or review, please mention the name of the movie you are asking the question about, otherwise I may have no way of knowing which film you are referring to)

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Robert Roten can be reached via e-mail at my last name at lariat dot org. [Mailer button: image of letter and envelope]