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Written by / 2/12/2016 / No comments / ,

RYAN REYNOLDS IN DEADPOOL

Ryan Reynolds as the fast-talking DEADPOOL doing an imitation of the 1970's hey-day magazine pic of Burt Reynolds
Hollywood stars often fail up. After the disastrously boring DAREDEVIL starring Ben Affleck, and a comeback as a director/actor for THE TOWN and ARGO, he's been cast as BATMAN who has, since 1989's Michael Keaton, gone through many changes, finally resting comfortably on Christopher Nolan's ultra-serious, mega-plot franchise that starred Christian Bale, who, despite sounding like one of those creepy prank callers that spook single women at the dead of night, was the quintessential BATMAN for the Millennial generation, and before and beyond. Then something very strange happened...

Assassin-like Spider-Man
So Affleck's Caped Crusader will soon go literally up against SUPERMAN, a sequel to Zack Synder's bland and pointless origin film centering on the Alien Demigod, who was more of a mannequin than Kim Cattrall in the 1980's... And upon the Affleck casting, the Movie Geek Internet was enraged... Few people remembering or caring or even realizing that at one time, before wanting to be the next action-packed Harry Ford, the guy could (CHASING AMY) really kind of... you know... seriously act...

 Cyber Punk Chick
But this isn't about Ben just yet. For an even worse movie than DAREDEVIL was GREEN LANTERN, where the CGI looked as if someone vomited Flintstones vitamins all over a computer while Ryan Reynold's performance was as dull as the script, the villain, and everything else on board. But his second chance is almost all pure comedy in that his character, DEADPOOL (originally Wade), a snarky assassin or equalizer or... something concerning revenge... is turned into a very ugly on the inside/Spider-Man on the outside reluctant superhero who tells so many one-liners, there's hardly any dialogue otherwise...

And so, despite trying too hard to crack up the audience (and/or hurl pop culture references while sporadically breaking the fourth wall ala FERRIS BUELLER) at every twist and turn, it's not too bad a ride, using limited locations and a troupe of grungy hero-friend/sidekicks that seem like Garbage Pale Kids on Steroids, and aren't as fleshed-out as they are intentionally anti-likable and quirky, and a one-dimensional villain that, like all others, yearns to wield what could be good (creating a man with incredible powers) yet for nefarious reasons...

DEADPOOL Poster
And while there are truly humorous, creative moments (despite the annoying-stoner T.J. Miller garnering too much screen time, uttering lines already heard in the trailers), and Reynolds seeming comfortable back in his comedy-based old shoe format while semi-seriously coping with being a good bad guy, there's something... or actually, quite a few things... missing overall. Like a real plot, genuine structure, and other such trivialities that might've gotten in the way of all the fun starting from the very beginning: an opening credit sequence that felt as if THE NAKED GUN had been rebooted.

As for the Marvel Genre, the fight scenes are nice and bombastic while the supposedly important romantic side-story amounts to pretty much nothing but peripheral fluff to Reynolds playing it quick and witty and urgent and desperate yet at the same time, safely enough to make up for that damn LANTERN, which is well extinguished at this point. And now we have a franchise that will probably last a while, giving Reynolds something to take hold of on a semi-permanent basis.

Reynolds in FIFTEEN
RATING: ***
RANDOM TRIVIA: Of course not to be mistaken by the fifth (and worst) DIRTY HARRY movie with the same title, which was actually called THE DEAD POOL where Liam Neeson, who is mentioned by Reynolds as part of a joke on the TAKEN movie franchise, played the main villain against Clint Eastwood; Neeson who kills a non-famous Jim Carrey who sings a Guns N' Roses song, who all appear later in a cameo at the singer's funeral • And, for Cult Film Freak history's sake, once there was a roomful of hungover twenty-somethings who had a house they could all hang out at, and laugh at shows, even before MSTK 3000 taught 'em how... One in particular was a Canadian production of a literal soap opera based on the lives of teenagers... really young ones, unlike the likes of BEVERLY HILLS 90210... The show was titled FIFTEEN and co-starred a then-horrible actress named Laura Harris who turned quite good (and gorgeous) in films like THE FACULTY and SUICIDE KINGS... But the true lead was a little boy who uttered/muttered lines like he'd just learned them, but there was something friendly and trustful about the robotic tyke, making him the Jason Priestly-lead of the series, and he's the star of DEADPOOL and is named... you got it... Ryan Reynolds. And if you can ever, ever get your hands on a FIFTEEN bootleg, the show is a howler like no other in television history; so send an email/link to share with yours truly.
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