Sunday, April 18, 2010

Kick-Ass: By name and nature:

Well, everyone who’s anyone has probably seen Kick-Ass by now: Matthew Vaughn’s renegade film, which gives two fingers to the companies who rejected it by becoming a world-wide sensation.
If you haven’t………Where the hell have you been?
The first five minutes of the film set us up for a series of thrills and spills, and some action sequences that are, quite frankly, jaw-droppingly awesome.
This is when we meet Dave, a typically nerdy Peter Parker like Social reject -- (Played brilliantly by Aaron Johnson, who has a surprisingly good American accent) -- who asks his less than helpful friends why nobody has ever attempted to be a superhero? Of course, you would think a guy who gets his ass kicked on a daily basis, and gets mugged at least three times a week would just give up and become an accountant, but Dave decides to get pro-active: and Kick-Ass is born.
On his first mission as the Scuba-masked vigilante, he gets into a bit of trouble and ends up in hospital for two months after, ironically, getting his ass-kicked. His nerve endings are fried and he can’t feel pain. Every bone in his body is coated in metal from his extensive injuries, and instead of whining about it, he decides to get back to fighting crime. Some people just never learn.
And of course, they introduce his dream girl, and just for added sting, she thinks he’s gay.
Of course she does.
Johnson puts in a solid performance, and has a knack for comic timing. And for anyone who has seen Percy Jackson, He looks scarily similar to Logan Lerman, don‘t you think? I never noticed it, until he pulled on the mask, and then it was like, Bam! But, once again, I’ve gone off-topic.
The real star of the show however, is Chloe Moretz, who plays the incomparable Hit-Girl. I loved Chloe in (500) Days of Summer and I’m eagerly awaiting her turn in the American Remake of Let the Right One In. I just thought I would throw in that little titbit, since I’m very excited about it. It’s the best Vampire film to come out in ages. Screw You Neil Jordan. (Sorry, I jus really hate Interview with a Vampire; Book and Film. They suck. Pun intended).
Any who….

She’s super-sweary, very violent and you seriously would not want to meet this chick down a dark alley…..But how cute is she?
Anyway, Moretz gives a stellar performance, showing a range of emotion and making you laugh and cry in the same scene. For example, a personal favourite scene of mine is when Big Daddy -- (played by Nicholas Cage, who, miraculously, didn’t make me want to scratch my eyes out of their sockets, mainly because of his Adam West voice) -- decides to teach his eleven year old daughter what a bullet to the chest feels like, and he’ll take her for ice cream if she doesn’t whine. Later, he tells her he left it on the low Calibre, and Hit-Girl proclaims him “The kindest Daddy in the world”.
That’s not my definition of kind, personally; but each to their own, I guess.
The film is shockingly violent, and I have heard many complaints that it glamorizes gun-violence and at times, I would agree. All the characters seem very laissez-faire with the idea of shooting someone in the chest. There seems to be no consequences to their actions, and everyone’s pretty happy when people die. But, then again, the film needed a certain level of comic violence for that extra punch.
It didn’t bother me, but for those of a squeamish disposition, I would advise you to stay far away, and of not, have a bucket at the ready.
The added appeal to the film for me was that no-one had to fall in a tub of radio-active material, get bitten by a radio-active spider, or even have to born on an alien planet. Everything about Kick-Ass, no matter how ludicrous, can be found in reality. Big-Daddy wears French Riot gear; Hit-Girl could get her clothes in Penny if needs be and Kick-ass bought a scuba suit on EBay.
Personally, I’m tempted to start saving up for one of those Jet-Packs. I hear the guy from Mexico has a quality product.
All in all, Kick-ass was pretty damn class. It was fresh, funny and original, and was a definite spanner in the works for the overpopulated Superhero-Vigilante genre market. But, if I’m honest, it’s Moretz performance that really sole the show, and it would have been a lesser film without her. I hope those Oscar idiots take note: We’ve got a star on the rise.

And I’m off to find a purple wig!

If you liked Kick-Ass:

Watch: Pulp Fiction, The Dark Knight, True Romance, Spider- Man 1 &2 and Kill Bill Volume 1.

Read: Graphic Novels. Kick-Ass finished filming before Mark Millar finished the comic, so there are differences in each, but the film keeps pretty close to the source material. I’m not a big fan of Manga or Graphic Novels, so this isn’t exactly my area of expertise, but after seeing the film, I’m all for reading it.

So Kick-Ass: Not for the faint-hearted; but hey, that’s showbiz!

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