'Deadpool' Is a Potty-Mouthed Splatterfest. A Really Funny One NPR film critic Bob Mondello says Deadpool goes in deep on its R rating — and has plenty of fun doing it.
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'Deadpool' Is a Potty-Mouthed Splatterfest. A Really Funny One

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'Deadpool' Is a Potty-Mouthed Splatterfest. A Really Funny One

Review

Movie Reviews

'Deadpool' Is a Potty-Mouthed Splatterfest. A Really Funny One

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ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Marvel's new superhero movie "Deadpool" stars Ryan Reynolds. This is not his first stint as a superhero. He was in the poorly-received "Green Lantern" movie. He has voiced an animated super snail, and he played the character Deadpool very briefly in an "X-Men" movie. But NPR critic Bob Mondello says for Ryan Reynolds, the fourth time is the charm.

BOB MONDELLO, BYLINE: Let me just say it straight out. "Deadpool" is funny.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

RYAN REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Please don't make this super-suit green or animated.

MONDELLO: I'm trying to think of the last time I laughed out loud at a superhero film - chuckled, sure - but laughs, not really. "Deadpool" is funny.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) You're probably thinking this was a superhero movie, but that guy in the suit just turned that other guy into a kebab. Surprise - this is a different kind of superhero story.

MONDELLO: Which is to say it is also violent - heads sliced off, blood pooling around corpses, bullets and blows aimed sadistically.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) You may be wondering, why the red suit. Well, that's so bad guys can't see me bleed. This guy's got the right idea. He wore the brown pants.

MONDELLO: And it's explicit, both visually and in terms of language.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) It wreaks like old lady pants in here.

LESLIE UGGAMS: (As Blind Al) Sounds like you have a [expletive] in your mouth.

MONDELLO: In short, "Deadpool" is not for kids, though it's hard to imagine the 14 year old who won't be trying to sneak in this weekend. Marvel has perfected the superhero story for the PG-13 crowd. This is R territory, and it's going in deep, though also with humor - about three jokes per sentence and no real interest in whether all the jokes land. There are opening credits where cheeky generics do the work of names. Featured actors include some hot chick, moody teen, along with one really good joke - screenplay written by, quote, "the real heroes here." And the fourth-wall breaking doesn't stop with the credits.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) You're going to do a superhero landing. Wait for it. You know, that's really hard on your knees, totally impractical. They all do it.

MONDELLO: The plot centers on a good guy who's also a bad guy, special forces op Wade Wilson played by Ryan Reynolds, who undergoes a rogue medical procedure that gives him superfast healing powers but...

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Whatever they did to me made my body indestructible, but my face...

T.J. MILLER: (As Weasel) No.

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Look at me.

MILLER: (As Weasel) I...

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) No, look at it.

MILLER: (As Weasel) No, I don't want to.

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Exactly.

MONDELLO: The rest, in more or less typical, though R-rated, superhero fashion, is him exacting revenge on the sadist who did this to him while rescuing his girlfriend. Have we been here before - well, yeah, though mostly in pieces. "Deadpool's" deadpan owes a little something to Robert Downey Jr.'s "Iron Man," the over-the-top violence we've seen in "Kill Bill." The deconstructing-the-superhero thing was done in "Kick-Ass." Even the zipping-through-the-frozen-bullet-slow-motion bit that director Tim Miller keeps returning to has been done recently in an "X-Men" flick. Oh, and I should have mentioned there are a couple of X-persons here - "Deadpool's" buddy Colossus who gets his head handed to him.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

STEFAN KAPICIC: (As Colossus) I'd prefer not to hit a woman. So please...

MONDELLO: And the youngster who fully lives up to her name - Negasonic Teenage Warhead, though she's easily distracted.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Oh, no. Finish your tweet. That's fine. Just give us a second. There you go. Hashtag it. Go get her, tiger.

MONDELLO: Miller, who is directing his very first feature here after mostly serving up visual effects and animated credit sequences, seems to be having plenty of fun mixing the clatter with splatter...

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Right up Main Street.

MONDELLO: ...and patter.

(SOUNDBITE OF FILM, "DEADPOOL")

MILLER: (As Weasel) [Expletive], you are hard to look at.

REYNOLDS: (As Deadpool) Like [expletive] with teeth.

MILLER: (As Weasel) You look like Freddy Krueger face [expletive] a topographical map of Utah.

MONDELLO: Miller and his writers also keep the self-referential Hollywood references coming - to Reynolds' Sexiest Man Alive People Magazine cover to Liam Neeson's "Taken" movies to how buxom Bernadette Peters fueled the 14-year-old Deadpool's fantasies, all of which is designed to make "Deadpool" appeal to the cynical, rebellious 14-year-old in everyone. Whether you want to unleash that 14-year-old, that is up to you. I'm Bob Mondello.

(SOUNDBITE OF SONG, "X GONNA GIVE IT TO YA")

DMX: (Rapping) First we gonna rock. Then we gonna roll. Then we let it pop. Don't let it go. X gonna give it to you.

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