starring Ryan Reynolds, Morena Baccarin, T.J. Miller, Gina Carano
screenplay by Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick
directed by Tim Miller
by Walter Chaw I get it. Deadpool is post-modern. It's absolutely aware of itself. It's The Cabin in the Woods. The primogenitor of Deadpool is Dennis Miller's '90s standup: sneering, smarmy, arch, and peppered with pop-culture references running the gamut from Ferris Bueller to Limp Bizkit to the fact that there are two Professor X's in Fox's X-Men franchise. Carted off to stand before the beloved X-Man, Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) asks, "McAvoy or Stewart?" And an audience of savvy comic-book/film fans cheers because they've been recognized. It's the button rock stars push when they say, "Hello (wherever they are)!" at the beginning of a set. It announces that they are aware of the space they occupy, and legions of concertgoers make the devil horns and light their lighters in appreciation: "Yeah, man, you're here. In that you are correct." Deadpool is about recognizing itself for what it is and recognizing its audience for recognizing where they are (which is there, recognizing that their hero recognizes where he is). When Deadpool's alter ego, being wheeled into the place where he's going to be turned into Deadpool, begs them not to give him an animated green suit, well, you knew that Reynolds was disastrously the hero in Green Lantern, right? It's only the second time it's referenced. He also calls a little bald girl Sinead O'Connor twice, because it's hard to write jokes. He could have called her "Blue Sunshine," except the only thing Deadpool can't afford to be is smarter than its audience. Relax--it never is.