Deadpool star Ryan Reynolds is a surprisingly great singer

But none of the sequences have the kind of bravura silliness of the first movie.

Ryan Reynolds returns as Marvel's most gonzo superhero, Deadpool. "'I will have Jose's head for this", screams Deadpool after spotting Juan Mata and Alexis Sanchez, before ruing: "When you make a sequel you've to double down on your promotions or you just get buried by Infinity War". The giant tin man Colossus (voiced by Stefan Kapicic) hasn't given up on making an X-Man out of him, and through his reluctant "training", Deadpool meets a troubled young mutant from New Zealand named Russell (Julian Dennison).

Deadpool is a natural performer, the superhero that's as good at wisecracking as he is at battling villains. The capper is a hellacious vehicle chase/fight scene that has Deadpool fighting Cable while Domino takes the wheel. There are jokes in here that people have been making for well over a year, but it's amusing to hear them in a major blockbuster because it also offers some kind of perverse validation.

Meanwhile Wolverine star Hugh Jackman has praised Deadpool 2 as well. He is more into work and career stuff than love. Deadpool might make a joke about climaxes at this point, but let's keep things clean. There's nothing here that even comes close to approaching the mastery Leitch showcased in his previous movie, Atomic Blonde.

When he was asked by the host if there'll be a third film, he said: 'Yes, we have the suit'. That record held for two years, only to be broken a few months ago by Black Panther's monumental $202 million take. Will the sequel break the records set by the original? Deadpool 2 is, if less of a surprise than its predecessor, just as amusing; if it's less sexy, that doesn't mean you're not going to get to see the protagonist walking around with no trousers. Either you exist in a world where everything, including the very film itself, is subject to mockery, or you don't.

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Now Deadpool author and creator Liefeld has tweeted his reaction and admitted he was in tears as the film ended.

The plot also can't rely too heavily on its bigger supporting cast.

Going rogue on the X-Men lands Deadpool in a prison for mutants with Russell and that's when the movie really takes off. So Wade pulls together an X-Force - including Domino (Atlanta's Zazie Beetz), Bedlam (Terry Crews), the Vanisher (a surprise A-list actor), Zeitgeist (It's Bill Skarsgard), Shatterstar (Lewis Tan) and a guy with no powers whatsoever (Rob Delaney) - to stop Cable and save the boy.

Although perhaps a bit long, Deadpool 2 doesn't really overstay its welcome. From the trailer, I think they get most of the way there, but I don't suspect it finishes as high with the critics the second time around. After all, as Wade himself would probably tell you, Deadpool 2 is definitely getting a sequel. In keeping with the rest of the movie, it's still fairly small-scale and character-focused, and surprisingly, it's emotionally effective too.

  • Stacy Houston