I finished watching Kick Ass roughly an hour ago, so believe me when I tell you it's fresh in my mind. You, like myself, will have read at least a couple of reviews on here and elsewhere (Empire.com has one) praising the film. Frankly I haven't heard a bad thing said about it to be honest. Well, except about the ending being a bit much, but otherwise it's praised as being the new king of comic book movies.
Well, things are going to be a little different around here. Here's my review of Kick Ass
By now most of you will know the premise: a teenager of
some number of years (still in school) decides that it was about time someone became a superhero. After all, it only makes sense that someone would try it eventually given all the films, comics, merchandising etc. So, ordering his costume on Amazon, our dear hero Dave (Aaron Johnson
) dones a mask and goes out in search of crime. The premise behind all this is that reality was the one thing the comic books didn't account for and Dave promptly gets beaten, stabbed, run over... he gets his ass kicked essentially. In his travels to the concrete he comes into contact with other would-be heroes; Big Daddy (played extremely well by(Nicholas Cage
), Hit-Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz
), and Red Mist (Christopher Mintz-Plasse
). The acting is good throughout, though the stand out character will undoubtedly end up being Moertz's Hit-Girl. Though you have to ask, how could a foul mouthed, murderous psychopoath eleven year old not be?
The direction is good under Mark Vaughn
and there's some truly great cinematography, if you're able to spot it
between the flying chunks of human. The film is true to form and incredibly violent. This may turn some people off but... well, you already know by now if this is a film you want to see or not regardless of the violence and swearing. Hell maybe even because of it.
really, there's a lot to look forward to with this film. When you step into the cinema with your admission ticket you'll know exactly what you're going to get. Well, except you won't.
You see, there's a problem with Kick Ass. A problem some of you
may be able to get past if you don't demand anything from the film, but for others, it will sink the film completely. With me? Well, Kick Ass sunk to the bottom of the ocean.
The premise of the film is that
a guy tries to be a superhero and becomes acquainted with reality with all its physics, honest human reactions and physically pain. But, in order to make it to the climax of the film Vaughn has to drop everything that the film has set up for the first hour. At approximately half way through Kick Ass decides that it is no longer a film which puts superheroes and reality together with hilarious results and instead falls back on gore, swearing and comic book reality. For the second hour of the film the silliness just gets more and more blatant, and the characterisation weaker and weaker, until the end when I was just begging for the film to finish so it couldn't screw up any more than it already had.
Seriously, the film screws up. It
violates its own internal rules and drops the only thing that made it an interesting story to watch. You want to see Dave (Kick Ass) triumph because he's incredibly likeable, and you're just waiting to see the inventive way that Vaughn manages to pull off the climax and the story. You want to see where Hit-Girl is going to be developed to since the reality of the first half of the film puts Hit-Girl in a slighly creepy context - possibly a direct satire of the Teen Titans - but he doesn't. The story falls onto cliché and silliness, which presumably attempts to pass itself off as humour, in order to finish off what should have been the most interesting take on superheros since, well, The Dark Knight. Had Vaughn kept the film true to the premise set up in the first half, and had the skill to bring something original to the whole thing then this would easily be a Full Price, maybe even a Better Than Sex film.
But Vaughn didn't. I could pinpoint exactly the moment the film jumps ship but I won't as that would be a bit of a spoiler.
So what would this film be worth? Well, that depends on how
drawn in you become in the early parts of the film. If you find yourself bored in the first hour then the second will take things to the realm of ridiculous and you'll easily enjoy the remainder. If, however, you, like myself, find the entire set up for Kick Ass really interesting and creative, you'll be disappointed by the lack of true follow through. All of this kind of makes the film hard to rate since either way I think a lot of people will be annoyed by the tone of one half of the film. Some Ol' Bullshit seems too harsh considering how much I enjoyed the first half. But my frustration with the way the film changed left me really irritated and, aside from a Hit-Girl gunfight towards the end (which you can see most of in the trailer), really bored.
I think this a Rental. At best. And just as a side note,
I'd heard from a few sources that the comic gave up on the superhero satire half way through as well, but that still didn't prepare me for the way this film went.
What a shame.
Talk to ya later!