Deadpool: A New Kind of Superhero Movie

Deadpool is a different kind of superhero movie than those that have been dominating the box office over the last few years. Despite hailing from the Marvel Comics universe, it was a major departure from the likes of The Avengers or Guardians of the Galaxy. As a fan of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) but not an avid comic reader, I knew little about Deadpool’s character other than his advanced healing ability and his tendency to break the fourth wall and address the audience in the comics. Luckily, ample backstory is given.

This movie was honestly a pleasant surprise from the opening credits. Refreshingly self-aware, introductions come as action movie stereotypes rather than actor’s names. From visceral but not gratuitous gore to intermittent fourth wall breaks, the audience is kept on their toes throughout the movie.

Ryan Reynolds’ fast-talking portrayal of the mercenary title character, also known as Wade Wilson, was obviously a labor of love. In press tour interviews, Reynolds reveals that he had been trying to get this movie made for years, fighting for an R-rating in order to stay true to the character. Incredibly, after a practically decade-long fight to get the movie made, a Deadpool sequel was greenlit by FOX before the movie even premiered to the public.

Most movies fight to stay within the constraints of PG-13 in order to reach a broader audience. Deadpool, however, decided to completely own its R-rating. Wilson’s penchant for profanity is made clear from the very first scene, as is his penchant for violence. Deadpool prefers to kill first and ask questions while he’s doing it. Definitely go see this movie with friends, and keep younger siblings and more conservative or sensitive family members at home.

Deadpool also marks the first title superhero in a major motion picture to not be heterosexual. Wilson is described as “omnisexual” in the comics, but on the subject, director Tim Miller said, “Pansexual! I want that quoted. Pansexual Deadpool.”

From action to drama, and even a touch of roommate sitcom, Deadpool transcends genres to include something for everyone. Deadpool is a story of tragedy, a story of love, a story or revenge, and a story of a twisted sense of humor that remains consistent despite tremendously difficult circumstances. No matter how beaten down he gets, the audience can count on Wade Wilson for a wise crack that will catch them off guard.

The movie ends in a clear cliché, which at face value was not incredibly satisfying. However, taking into account the meta and self-aware nature of the movie and its title character, the ending is almost a joke in and of itself.

At press time, Deadpool has earned a “Fresh” rating of 84% on Rotten Tomatoes’ “Tomatometer,” with an audience score of 96%. In its opening day it earned $47.5 million, and is projected to earn $130 million over the holiday weekend.

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