Thoughts On: R-Rated Movies

With Hollywood set to unleash a new wave of R-Rated films, I discuss why this could be detrimental for movies.

It’s seemingly impossible to look at any source of entertainment news without seeing something about Deadpool, a film that, carrying a $58 million budget and a handful of dick jokes, has become the ultimate underdog story. Grossing over $500 million since its release nearly three weeks ago, the film received praise from many (including myself which you can check here) and started a discussion about the superhero genre having new life breathed into it.

Suddenly fans were becoming less focussed on their interwoven universe and concentrating more on all these other characters who could be given the same appropriate adult treatment usually expected from a Tarantino film.

Just like any kind of success however, Hollywood have taken notice of Deadpool’s success and glazed other films with the same “no children allowed” brush. Now we’re getting a truly dark and violent Wolverine film to say goodbye to Hugh Jackman’s sharp handed mutant and an R-rated cut of Batman Vs Superman for its home release.

This immediately set off alarm bells for me as this isn’t the first time Hollywood have jumped on whatever is popular. Who could forget the countless amount of Star Wars imposters after the series came out of nowhere to become one of the best selling pieces of media ever or, and more relevant in this case, Christopher Nolan’s reboot of Batman which resulted in an onslaught of moody, dark takes on popular fictitious characters (honestly, who cares about a gritty take on Dracula again?) that still continues today.

Many others before me have pointed out a very important point about this “rise” of r-rated films and that is that branding a film with that age rating doesn’t mean that it’ll be successful: in some cases it can do the complete opposite.

Take for instance Watchmen, a great film in my eyes but one that I can’t deny underperformed when it hit the big screens. If the R-rating could not save the adaptation of one of the most critically acclaimed novels of all time, one that stands amongst other greats like 1984, then it seems pretty clear that branding a film as such will in turn not result in $$$.

What Hollywood need to realise is that the reason for Deadpool’s success is the team behind it: you had the original creators backing it, the actor who had pushed for the film to be made (so much so that he is 70% sure that he leaked the test footage online) as well as writers who knew the character and were driven to make the film they wanted without interaction from heads at FOX. Whilst people went crazy for Deadpool getting that age rating, they didn’t flock out to see it because of that. They went to see it because the trailers made them laugh, the promotional material was exactly what it should have been and it wore its fourth wall breaking humour on its sleeve.

James Gunn knows a thing or two about unconventional superhero films since, after all, he made 2014’s biggest sleeper hit Guardians Of The Galaxy and recently posted on Facebook about the comparisons between his film and Deadpool.

“The film has a self-deprecating tone that’s riotous. It’s never been done before. It’s poking fun at Marvel. That label…

Posted by James Gunn on Monday, 15 February 2016

Unlike Hollywood executives, Gunn knows that the reason for a film like GOTG and Deadpool’s success isn’t because it’s different but because it done what the original creators set out to do. Whilst the former paved way for the latter, both films are still recognised for not being afraid to be unconventional or themselves and in the same way, Hollywood shouldn’t be aimlessly marking films due to the success of one movie.

Personally, I can’t wait to see an R-Rated (I’ve wrote out this word so many times my brain is going numb) cut of Batman vs Superman as I know from seeing The Dark Knight Returns that both characters suit that treatment. Fans are already speculating that we’ll get to see the death of people close to Bruce Wayne and this is what I want to see Hollywood, films getting what they deserve because it benefits the viewer and improves their experience.

Not so you can fill your pockets yet again.

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Deadpool MOVIE REVIEW

Wish superheroes nowadays weren’t all dure faced, serious shits? Then Deadpool might be the film for you. 

If you weren’t able to tell from the countless trailer reactions and previews up on my site then you should know that I was a little bit hyped for this film about a loud mouthed, regenerating merc with as much one liners as he has ammo, so much so that I named it my number one most anticipated film of the year. So of course I should have been disappointed with it since there’s no way it managed to surpass the expectations I had set out for it?

Nope. In fact I’m going to go so far as to say it’s the best film Marvel has ever created since Spiderman 2 (please put the pitchforks down). Thankfully I won’t be just throwing that in for controversy and will justify myself in this fun, not at all Buzzfeed-esque list. (Ooh, click-baity.) So without further ado….


1. A Truly Faithful Comic-Book Adaption 

It would have been so easy to incorporate Deadpool into the Marvel Cinematic Universe just to make a few extra bucks. It’s an easy safe net for any new superhero film that may risk being too weird or unfamiliar (see Guardians Of The Galaxy) and when you’re dealing with a character like Wade Wilson, who has a tendency to brutally mutilate his enemies after hitting on them, I can understand any urges Marvel may have had to censor it.

Thankfully this isn’t the case as Deadpool is as potty mouthed, violent and weird as ever. Wearing it’s 15 rating with pride, the film never lets you forget it with some truly cringe inducing moments with bones breaking, brains splitting and heads suddenly no longer being attached to bodies with extremely gruesome detail.

This isn’t just an excuse to have a bit more blood on screen though as it helps for the viewer to better understand the relationship between our titular  character and his prostitute girlfriend Vanessa as well as experience the true pain and torture Deadpool had to endure to get where he is. Violent and heartfelt, this is near enough the perfect Deadpool film. We’re forgetting one thing though…..

2. Side Splittingly Funny

The main factor that draws in people to Deadpool is his self referential humour that doesn’t so much break the fourth wall rather than totally destroy it. In the comics we have him pointing out the cliches and pitfalls of the medium and Deadpool in this film is no different.


The funniest moments and the narrative rely heavily on the fact he is aware he’s in a film, one being where Deadpool points out the size of the set before bringing up the fact that he’s only seen two of the X-men because of budget issues. Other moments are a bit more subtle (“I wasn’t talking to you, I was talking to them”) but all of them add up to further enhance Deadpool’s uniqueness both in its humour and execution. We’ve got last one point though and it may be the best reason yet to go out and see this film…

3. Marks A New Age For Comic Films

Right bare with me on this point before you laugh me off as going insane or something along those lines. Think back about the history of superhero films. Back before the 2000’s we had some awful adaptions of our favourite heroes bar a few batman films and by the time Spiderman hit our screens we had what I’d call the cheesy phase of comic films where they were still finding their footing and sometimes even hit it bang on (X-Men being a great example).


We had the dark, gritty era brought on by Christopher Nolans batman films before we endured the onslaught of interlinked films like Iron Man and Captain America where we seemed to have perfected the formula which, love it or hate it, works. As far as I see it, without any dramatic change we’re gonna hit a superhero fatigue and with Deadpool I can see a whole new range of mature, vastly different comic book films.

With Deadpool being sold out at certain times and converting those who previously had no idea who he was, it’s inevitable that this will be another franchise in the making but if a chimichanga loving, mercenary for hire can become a success then what’s stopping DC giving Deathstroke his very own film or Marvel getting even more obscure characters to have a shot?

 Deadpool has been both a critical and commercial success and for good reasons: the pacing is flawless, it’s true to the source material, it packs as much heart as it does laughs and it’s not unafraid to wears its shortcomings on its sleeves. So go grab a ticket and enjoy yourself, though not as much as Deadpool does when left alone with a unicorn teddy.

9/10

For Fans Of: Kick Ass

Deadpool Trailer reaction

14 years.

That’s how long it’s taken for a Deadpool movie to see the light of day though when you realise that the folk at Fox had to make a film about a chimichanga loving, violence enthusiast who loves to break the fourth wall (what kind of weirdo would do that eh?) they had a bit of a challenge on their hands. Just like the humour of the titular hero (?) , the production of a Deadpool film has been all over the place with Artisan Entertainment making a deal with Marvel back in 2000 when superhero films were all but dead after the likes of Batman and Robin had made the genre a laughing stock. 4 years later and New Line Cinema, the home of the Lord of The Rings and Hobbit franchise, attempted a Deadpool spin off with Ryan Reynolds but due to director David Goyer disinterest in the film the project got called off which is a disappointment seeing as the man eventually did screenwriting for the Dark Knight trilogy which revitalised superhero films. The following year 20th Century Fox gained interested in producing a Deadpool flick but following that the only sort of thing that happened was an appearance in X-Men Origins: Wolverine where they sOWED HIS MOUTH SHUT? THE MERC WITH THE MOUTH HIS MOUTH SOWED SHUT CLOSED? ARE YOU SERIOUS?
And then we got this.

Talking to enemies in Spanish before beating them all up while singing Juice Newton. Showing an assault gun wielding merc a crayon drawing of Deadpool beheading him. Meta humour by the bucketload. All of that within 2 minutes and it’s no wonder why this “leaked” test footage set the internet on fire with hype. Deadpool has always been a favourite of mine, definitely ranking in the top 3, so when I heard about this I got more excited than I should have. I’m usually hesitant to do so since I want to keep neutral though if you’ve read anything about Biffy on this blog you’ll know it’s a bit difficult for me to control myself. Not only did we get this test footage with Fox telling us that a film was in production but that it would also be coming out February 2016 AND would share a cinematic universe with the amazing X-Men films.

After a period of teaser images and an April fools video that you can check out here, we got this teaser here on Monday.

The very next day, we finally got our first meaty, or Quorn yeno I ain’t judging we’re all friends here, chunk of the long awaited film.

First things first, the faithfulness to the source material is extremely relieving. Everything about this film screams Deadpool and it’s great to know that Ryan Reynolds will be reprising his role as the titular character. From start to finish the trailer was a shoutout to the fans for pretty much making this film a reality. If it hadn’t been for the overwhelmingly positive reaction to the test footage then this might have not seen the light of day and it’s good to see that director Tim Miller has recognised this. The R rating alone means we’ll get an uncensored Deadpool, not restricted like 12A superhero pals and the trailer showed just how unafraid the crew are on making this a violent film. No doubt we’ll have folk protesting against the film’s release but it’s not as if we haven’t had this a thousand times before.

I’d like to say I haven’t watched the trailer so many times that the amount is scarily near triple digits. I’d like to say I wasn’t laughing my arse off at TJ Miller’s quips about Deadpool’s appearance. I’d like to say I didn’t let out a huge smile when I saw his flatmate Blind Al (guess why she has that name). I’d like to say that I didn’t do all these things but I’d be a massive liar. I’ve jumped on the hype train. I haven’t so much jumped on the hype train as I have bought every seat on said train, put on a worker’s cap and shouted “FULL STEAM AHEAD”. I’ve bought the train. I identify as the Deadpool movie hype train. I’m in crippling debt. Send help.

Deadpool image #2

So what are your thoughts about the Deadpool trailer? Excited? Dissapointed? What’s your favourite moment? Leave your thoughts in the comments below since I’d love to see what you thought of it. Mine has to be the ” the cancer is only in my liver, lungs, prostate and brain … all things I can live without” bit, the little smirk at the end gets me laughing every time. Also don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @blinkclyro for some more fanboying.