Newcomer Taron Egerton leads an absolutely awesome cast in what can only be classified as a loving tribute to James Bond and the spy movies of yesteryear. Director Mathew Vaughn and his relationship with comic creator Mark Millar has proved to be a very worthwhile collaboration that keeps giving movie fans great movies. What started with Kick Ass and has continued with Kingsman will hopefully lead to more of these balls to the wall action films that have just as much heart and story as blood and guts. I personally think the thing that makes these films work is how you grow to love the characters and the situations they find themselves in. More than once in the film I found myself thinking of parts of Eggsy I could relate to, such as how he had a family, how he was misunderstood and how he reacted the way many of us would in extreme situations. Mark my words I know we have not heard the last from Taron Egerton. This cast is really made up of a who’s who of the acting community Michael Caine, Colin Firth, Mark Strong, and Samuel L. Jackson. It really is hard to say much more about this film without giving too much away. I give Kingsman: The Secret Service five stars out of five.
When I first heard that Mark Millar had two more story arcs in mind for KICK ASS I was stoked. I enjoyed the first book and film so much that any excuse to follow in the exploits of these two characters, Kickass and Hit Girl was something I greatly anticipated. They had become my new favorite superheroes and I loved the thought of getting to read KICK ASS 2 before any of my friends had seen the film. Granted there would be some changes but all in all I figured they would stick fairly close to the source material. Then came the day that the story arc had been finished and was being collected into a trade hardback and I pre ordered it from Amazon. Now I know some of you are thinking the single issues had been out before that. However I really did not have a comic shop near me at the time and it had not occurred to me that I could order them online until later on.
Then finally the fateful day came and I got KICK ASS 2 in the mail and I read it three times in two days and by this point I had read the first book about 6 times as well. KICK ASS 2 was not superior to the first but was an equal to be sure. This time around while still poking fun at super hero books and the people who read them it was poking fun at the idea of comic book team ups. The fact that the Avengers was coming out and that a Justice League movie was also being talked up was Millar’s comic fodder this time and that was a great choice because it allowed him to create more of his already amazing characters. This time throwing in a hand full of new super heroes and also super villains. With Millers dynamic storytelling and Romita’s fabulous artwork there was no doubt in my mind that the second KICK ASS film was going to kick just as much ass as the first one did. While constantly waiting for news about a second kick ass film I found out that Millar and Romita were going to do a 5 part mini-series on Hit Girl. This made me as happy as if I was getting to see KICK ASS 2 the movie, so again, I pre-ordered from Amazon and got that glorious book in the mail. By this point I had stopped counting the amount of times I had read the other Kick ass books but it was a lot. I must have read HIT GIRL 3 times or so trying to figure out just where it tied into KICK ASS 2 and once I saw how and where it did I started thinking to myself do you think they’re going to make a hit girl movie and then KICK ASS 2. As for the KICK ASS 2 and HIT GIRL comics I loved them and would highly recommend them to anyone who is a fan of the KICK ASS comics or anyone who likes good adult comic fun.
With KICK ASS 2 having opened in theaters a few months ago I thought it would be a good time to offer my opinion of the first arc of KICK ASS in both the comic and the film. This is all about the comic that inspired the whole thing. While, like most people, I was introduced to KICK ASS through the film by the same name, I have to say that what we have in a comic here is amazing. I have been reading comic books for a while and had never heard of Mark Millar. I had, however, heard of the artist on the book, John Romita Jr., son of one of the greats in the industry. I loved his work on Ultimate Spider-Man.
After seeing KICK ASS for the first time, I was pumped to read the books and even more pumped by the fact that Millar had stated that he had two more arcs in mind for this story. I still remember walking through Barnes and Noble the night I came across the trade hardback of the first arc that the first film was based upon. I was walking through the graphic novels looking for something to help me pass the time on a two hour break from work when I saw it. That familiar yellow font that I had seen on the poster at the movie theater where I was working at the time. I picked it up walked to the front of the store and then proceeded to read the whole thing twice in two hours. While the second time was primarily to pay more attention to Romita’s awesome artwork, I can honestly say that this was an amazing read for any comic fan of adult age.
It simultaneously made fun of super hero books while at the same time being a super hero book and a damn good one at that. It was and is a great story with great characters that takes a long hard look at the people who read comics and look up to the heroes in them as well as making one think about that time so long ago when they fantasized about being Batman or Spider-man. KICK ASS is what I think many of us wish we could be in this out of control world of today. A person who makes a difference. We can’t all be cops but we can all go home make a homemade super hero costume and go out and fight some crime. Now I, of course, am not actually suggesting people should go and do this, I just think that after reading KICK ASS you might at least think about it, and I mean, really think about it. To paraphrase the last panel in the book, a world full of super heroes, that would be something to see. I really do recommend this book. It has it all, humor, action and cursing, with this great story and fantastic artwork you can’t go wrong.
While Jeff Wadlow may have never directed an R rated film before KICK ASS 2 it was a great place for him to start. Being such a crazy fan of the first KICK ASS and a fan of the comics as well, I was going into this with hope and optimism. Because I had read the comics and knew what to expect somewhat storywise I kind of already had some thoughts about what they might change for purposes of the film. Lots of people, including myself, were upset that Matthew Vaughan was not coming back to direct this sequel and that he had handpicked an unproven director to write and direct KICK ASS 2. I have to say that while KICK ASS 2 has received more than its fare share of bad reviews that this film is not a bad film.
KICK ASS 2 is on a size level larger than the first and is in fact a solid follow up to the story in the first film. It has some elements from the first film that follow over and make this second film stronger than it otherwise would have been. The cast is still strong as ever now with Jim Carrie on board, who as some of you might have read, publicly announced he could no longer support a film with this much violence in it after the events of Sandy Hook Elementary. While I do believe in the idea of people being able to make up their own minds, I personally am on the side of the film’s producer who said “You don’t just go against the film you have made without at least telling the people you made it with, “guys this is what I’m doing”.” Personally after seeing the film I have say I completely disagree with all the reviewers who said it was more violent than the first. I thought if anything it was on the same level and in a lot of cases was even toned down a bit from the first. While I love the first film and, like the second one, it’s gone from awesome to great in my thinking, the largest problem for me was just in the fact that they combined the KICK ASS 2 and HIT GIRL comics for the story here which worked out fine but had some aspects I missed from them. Some lines here and there and some jokes as well but all in all I thought KICK ASS 2 did not deserve the bad reviews it has received. Should you see KICK ASS 2 I think if you are a fan of the first film and any of the comics then yes you will have a blast and as for me I’m waiting for the blu ray of this and for the third and final comic arc to end and then the epic conclusion we all hope to see on the big screen in KICK ASS 3.
“How come nobody’s every tried to be a superhero?” This was the first line in the trailer for Matthew Vaughn’s KICK ASS based on the Mark Millar comic of the same name. I can remember sitting in a darkened theater and seeing this trailer for the first time and thinking this looks like a good comedy. I thought it was nothing more than a comedy about superheroes definitely not the amazing film I would later discover it truly was. For me KICK ASS was not something I would have had to have seen in theaters. In fact I would wait for blu ray to see this film. I got it the day it came out and after that first faithful viewing I was hooked. I watched it 6 more times that very day and again over the weekend. I was obsessed, some might even say unhealthily so, but I didn’t care. I was loving this film and about a month after seeing it I bought the trade hardback. For me the first KICK ASS is what all other comic book movies should strive to be. It was perfect from the cast to the music, the writing, the directing, all the departments did their jobs and did them well. Personally I thought that the music was so good that not only do I have the soundtrack but the score to the film. I love hearing the Kick ass theme and the hit girl and big daddy themes. These songs have the power to take me back to the film every time I listen to them. Many of the people I know want to understand what it is I see in this movie that they don’t. For me it all has to do with the scene when KICK ASS defends the one guy who is being attacked by three other men. And he tells them he would rather die then just walk away. The idea that a normal guy would have that kind of courage to stand his ground and defend someone he does not know makes KICK ASS stand out as a real hero and not just a comic book hero. To anyone who has not seen this wonderful film I would highly recommend it but only if you are of appropriate age. I also really would like to say that while most of the time I do not like Nick Cage that his portrayal of BIG DADDY was a real treat for me in the film and Chloe Moretz as HIT GIRL was also great to watch. Without the two of them portrayed as believable the film would not work as well.