Cinematic Releases: Once Upon a Deadpool (2018) - Reviewed

I wasn't sure going into this if I would like it, toning down a popular raunchy franchise is almost never a good idea. How many times have we seen R-rated series go down the tube when they try to be family friendly? The answer is, pretty much every time. Once Upon a Deadpool (2018) is not one of these missteps.

Yes, they edited the movie to pieces, yes, they removed some of the funnier jokes, yes, the blood is gone. Does it affect the story? No. Did they figure out how to compensate for it? Better than I've ever seen anyone do it before.

Firstly, the addition of Fred Savage is utterly perfect, he actually adds to the movie, his scenes are amazing and pretty damn funny. There is one scene where the use of the *bleep* to get rid of expletives is used to the utmost for some of the biggest laughs in this re-edit. He becomes us, the viewer, and gets to have all the snark we have going into this for the now triple dip, and really gets some of the best belly laughs to be found here.

Secondly, the lack of blood and gore seems to leave a hole and it feels weird seeing crazy amounts of violence without blood. I'm not sure this part sat well with me, it took it out of the realm of cinema and moved it directly into Saturday morning cartoon territory, but if the kids can dig it, then I'm down for it.

The editing of the this seems a bit off--it was jarring at times and very uncomfortable at others, it did make it very difficult to get too deep into the movie. It felt like they had to figure out what parts were essential to telling the story without worrying if the connections to the scene were there.

Finally, I have to say this, I'm not sure this totally worked, they removed a lot of humor, and frankly, didn't replace it with equal amounts of laughs. I think in the long run it falls a bit short of what it could have been and was in the original cut, and way short of the greatness that is the Super-Duper Cut. It was just a bit lackluster and left me leaving the theater wondering if it was really worth it for kids to get to see a version of the film as a Christmas gift.

There is one thing I cannot stress enough about this though, and it actually has very little to do with the film itself, stay in the theater till after all the post credits scenes are done, the tribute at the very end was enough to bring a theater full of jaded film reviewers to tears, and got quite a few great laughs.

--Trevor West