“Deadpool 2” is not better than the first one or emotionally deeper (despite trying), but that does not matter because it is funnier.
New director David Leitch sticks to the same formula of raunchy humor and low blows to other superhero movies for a film that succeeds in feeling new and hilarious enough to keep this franchise going.
Yes, you will probably want at least one more serving of the Merc with a Mouth at the movies after your viewing of “Deadpool 2,” which is aided by two well-performed new editions to the franchise: Cable (Josh Brolin) and Domino (Zazie Beetz).
Brolin, coming off his stellar CGI performance as Thanos in “Avengers: Infinity War,” may not have the gigantic height his character has in the comics (something the movie comically brings up) but his clashes with Ryan Reynolds’s Deadpool stay true to this comic book rivalry and look great on-screen.
Beetz had the difficult task of jumping into a comic book role of a well-known Marvel character with a new look. Whereas Reynolds’s Deadpool is a live-action replica of his comic book version and Brolin was given the Cable basics (gray hair, cybernetic arm and eye), Beetz has a different look from Domino in the comics. There is no black raccoon patch over her eye and no Joker-like chalk-white skin. It is one of those details that reeks of studio interference and a lack of Marvel Studios involvement (“Deadpool 2″ is a 20th Century Fox production). I will even admit I was disappointed when the first images of Beetz as Domino appeared online, fanboyishly moaning she did not look like she did in my Rob Liefeld-drawn “X-Force” comics of the 90s.
Domino’s key identifying trait is her luck. That is her mutant power and it is well-used in both funny and high-action ways, highlighted by Beetz’s glowing screen presence. Hardcore comic fans will get over the fact she is not caked in makeup. Beetz succeeds in her mission of giving this franchise a new hero who could be expanded upon in spinoffs (as Deadpool jokes about in the trailers for this film).
Zazie Beetz is Domino, a mutant who never has to worry about her luck running out. (20th Century Fox)
The titular anti-hero is not outdone by these shiny new X-Force-inspired additions. This is still his show by a lot.
Once again, his character’s biggest superpower is his lethal sarcasm and his NSFW vocabulary, fueled by an R rating that has helped set this franchise apart from your standard PG-13 superhero fare.
Deadpool is not really here to save the day (he does his best), or make you believe in love (although the movie tries that too). He is here to make you laugh. That is what you are spending your money on. There is no stressing of connected comic-book movie continuity (although there are jokes about it), just Reynolds making a superhero role his own in a way only the greats at Marvel Studios such as Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans and Chris Hemsworth have.
He is Deadpool, and when you can say that about an actor portraying a superhero, good things happen.
There are also a couple of cool surprise appearances from the X-Men universe along with a post-credit sequence for the ages. The way this movie handles the much-hyped formation of X-Force — something so unexpected I am not even going to get into it because it just needs to be seen to be believed — shows this franchise will always do what it wants, not necessarily what you might want.
And that is why it works. You never know what you are going to get with “Deadpool.”
That is the way it should be.