Wade Wilson/Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds) gathers a team for what he thinks is a worthy cause. The mission: save young mutant Russell (Julian Dennison) from the clutches of Nathan Summers/Cable (Josh Brolin), a cybernetic soldier from the future who wants to terminate the kid. There are complications along the way.

The irreverent R-rated humor that made 2016's "Deadpool" such a refreshing spin on the genre returns in this juiced-up deadpan sequel. While not as
jaw-dropping, or gory, as the original, there are plenty of laughs, thrills and revelations to keep this franchise rolling on. It is brutal enough to draw winces. Ryan Reynolds commands the spotlight again as the foul-mouthed superhero in the X-Men universe. His one-liners and quick jabs continue to provide jolts of nervous laughter, but they don't have quite the same impact as in the first film. Some serious moments get in the way of the fun. Maybe there's nothing really new here, but it's still a rollicking hard-core thrill ride that gets a boost from yet another amazing Marvel performance from ex-Goonie Josh Brolin. Keeping up with the stars is young Julian Dennison, who was impressive in "Hunt for the Wilderpeople". David Leitch ("Atomic Blonde") takes over the directing chores, keeping things moving at breakneck speed. He gets help from a clever screenplay by Rhett Reese, Paul Wernick and Ryan Reynolds (who is also one of the producers - a triple threat). There's so much going on that it's impossible to catch everything in one sitting. Several tongue-in-cheek film and character references will fly by unnoticed. X-Men do show up, but revealing who most of them are would amount to spoilers. Returning from the first movie are Colossus (the voice of Stefan Kapicic) and Negasonic Teenage Warhead (Brianna Hildebrand). Deadpool's newly-formed X-Force includes Domino (Zazie Beetz), Bedlam (Terry Crews), Zeitgeist (Bill Skarsgård), Shatterstar (Lewis Tan), average guy Peter (Rob Delaney) and the Vanisher (played by a star who remains to be seen). Morena Baccarin, taking a break from TV's "Gotham", returns as Wade's true love Vanessa. Also back are T. J. Miller as Wade's buddy and bar owner Weasel, along with Leslie Uggams and Karan Soni as elderly roommate Blind Al and cab driver Dopinder. Eddie Marsan is easy to hate as the headmaster of a school for troubled mutant kids. A killer soundtrack with a big surprise (not a spoiler): the awesome new song "Ashes". Céline Dion's titanic vocal rendition accompanies the goofy Bond-style opening title sequence. Deadpool himself says it's too good for this movie. To the powers that be: don't burn this tune's chances for awards consideration. Please stay through the end credits - you won't be disappointed. The eXhilarating "Deadpool 2" shouldn't be this series last stand. (4/5 CAMS)

Rated R (strong violence and language throughout, sexual references and brief drug material)
Running Time: 119 minutes

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