Movie Reviews

Published on August 16th, 2013 | by gareth

0

Kick-Ass 2

After answering the call and brutally taking down a crime boss, self-proclaimed superhero and a high school student Dave Lizewski (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), has settled into a mundane life. The thrill of taking on bad guys has been replaced with hanging out with his friends, going to class, and pondering his future. His former cohort Mindy/ Hit Girl (Chloe Grace Moretz), however has not abandoned her vigilante ways as she still haunted by the death of her father in the previous film. This is the backdrop against which the new film “Kick-Ass 2” takes place and it delivers a funnier and well-paced film that is a worthy but less ultraviolent offering than its predecessor.

 

Dave eventually convinces Mindy to help train him as he’s itching to get back out on the streets. In a hysterical opening run, things go very well at the start but soon turned bad for Kick Ass which forces Mindy to come to his aid brutally dispatching a group of thugs. This catches the attention of Mindy’s Guardian (Morris Chestnut), who after serving as her father’s partner for several years, insist that Mindy have a normal upbringing and this includes giving up her vigilante persona and embracing life as a high school student.

 

Mindy agrees to do this and soon finds herself firmly in the sites of the ultra-chic clique in high school. The group of girls decides that it’s time to take Mindy under their wings and make her one of the in crowd which often causes Mindy to question her identity. At the same time, Dave seeks out a group of like-minded heroes under the leadership of Col. Stars & Stripes(Jim Carrey), who himself is a former enforcer for crime syndicate who found religion and now seeks to make up for his past misdeeds.

 

Their early efforts are highly successful and soon catch the attention of Chris D’Amico, (Christopher Mintz-Plasse), who is still haunted by the death of his father at the hands of Kick Ass. When fate steps in and suddenly puts them in control of the family fortune and resources, Chris reinvents himself as a super villain and proceeds to use his family wealth and influence to put together a team of heavy hitters as he attempts to bring mayhem and chaos to the city with the ultimate goal of destroying Dave and his group of heroes.

Toward that end, the awkwardly but inevitably moves forward and brings his plan of revenge forward which causes Dave and his l friends to realize the consequences of their actions and to question their duty as well as place in the world.

 

What follows is a solidly entertaining action fast complete with some surprisingly good humor as well as touching and effective moments between the two leads. Donald Faison does some fantastic supporting work and although I would’ve loved to have seen more of his character Jim Carrey deals the scenes whenever he is in them yet manages to stay remarkably in character to the point that one reviewer at the end of the film expressed to me that he could not believe that was the maniacal actor playing such an off character part.

 

Johnson and Moertz are the backbone of the series and naturally depend upon a strong villain which Mintz-Plasse is more than able to provide. The expanded roster of heroes and villains certainly propels the series forward and it was interesting for me to see that although the film has exceptional amounts of violence it was actually considerably toned down from what I had been expecting after the events of the last film. It was my understanding that the studio wish the film to be more mainstream and while not wanting to harm the message and tone of the film to rein in the violence in order to up the character development and storytelling.

 

Director Jeff Wadlow has done a great job following up Matthew Vaughn who is stayed on this time to produce the film. The crowd was laughing and sharing and enthralled throughout and I found myself absolutely captivated by the film and enjoying every minute of it. For me, this was without a doubt the most satisfying and enjoyable of the summer offerings this year and I am seriously looking forward and hoping to a third outing in the series.

 

4 stars out of 5

 

 

Second Review by Amara Dumlao

 

 

The original “Kick-Ass” followed the tumultuous evolution of a high school superhero with a secret identity, amusing, slightly funny and definitely interesting. Enter “Kick-Ass 2” broadening the scope by further examining the stories presented in the original.

“Kick-Ass 2” shifts focus to the struggles of Mindy Macready/Hit-Girl (Chloë Grace Moretz) who is having mixed emotions on her life as a superhero, experiencing general high school ills, all while coping with the loss of her father, Big Daddy. Meanwhile our lead, Dave Lizewski/Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson), finds himself as the newest member of a rag-tag league of real-life superheroes, including his new buddy, Dr. Gravity (Donald Faison), and new love interest, Night Bitch (Lindy Booth). The league also provides the film with a new father/superhero figure to replace Big Daddy, Colonel Stars and Stripes (Jim Carrey). The Colonel is a kooky ex-bad guy turned good, strange but likeable, he easily could have been one of Carrey’s wild characters back on “In Living Color”.

And there is the return of Christopher Mintz-Plasse as rival character Chris D’Amico who sheds his persona of Red Mist to become a new super villain with his own team of baddies. Best of these villains is Mother Russia (Olga Kurkulina) who is an unstoppable force of trouble for our heroes. Then there are the high school mean girls who round out the evil spectrum, with snarky leader Brooke (Claudia Lee).

Masterfully balancing comedy alongside tropes, it is easy to wonder if the jokes in “Kick-Ass 2” are orchestrated to be funny or if the laughs are just the result of the hockey nature of the film’s contents. But does it even matter when the result is this enjoyable?!

Much like the original, “Kick-Ass 2” is dotted with exceptionally foul and creative language. The fight scenes are not just good but clever, quick, and amusing, keeping the film moving at a fun clip. Not a moment is lost on this film, which rolls opening credits happen alongside the films take-off. A nice change in a world where so many sequels drag, churn up and reuse plot, and fail at comedic attempts. Yet “Kick-Ass 2” manages to sprint past the original by taking the established characters to the next level.

4/5


About the Author

Syndicated movie & game critic, writer, author and frequent radio guest. His work has appeared in over 60 publications worldwide and he is the creator of the rising entertainment site and publication “Skewed and Reviewed”. He has three books of film, game reviews and interviews published and is a well-received and in demand speaker on the convention circuit. Gareth has appeared in movies and is a regular guest on a top-rated Seattle morning show. He has also appeared briefly in films such as “Prefountaine”, “Postal”. “Far Cry”. and others. Gareth is also an in-demand speaker at several conventions and has conducted popular panels for over two decades.



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