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Saturday August 31, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Saturday August 31, 2013 MYT 8:32:29 AM
By MICHAEL CHEANG
HELLO, parents! Looking for a nice, wholesome, innocent, colourful, family-oriented movie to bring your kids to? Well, don’t bring them to Kick-Ass 2.
Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Much like the first Kick-Ass back in 2010, Kick-Ass 2 is stupendously over-the-top, gratuitously violent, mind-numbingly foul mouthed, but oh-so-awesomely kick-ass.
In the first movie, Dave Lizewski aka Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) became the world’s first costumed superhero (despite being not very super), and took out the D’Amico crime family with the help of Mindy Macready aka Hit-Girl (Chloe Grace Moretz).
Taking elements from comic scribe Mark Millar’s Kick-Ass 2 and Hit-Girl series, this sequel starts off with Dave having retired his Kick-Ass costume, and Hit-Girl having moved in with her guardian Sergeant Marcus Williams (Morris Chestnut), who is also her late father’s (Big Daddy, played by Nicolas Cage in the first movie) former partner.
Unable – or rather, unwilling – to live life as a normal teenager, Mindy has been secretly skipping school to continue training as Hit-Girl. When Dave finds out about it, he asks her to train him so he can become a proper superhero and work with her to form a new super-team.
Kick-Ass may have “retired”, but his actions have inspired a whole wave of new costumed superheroes, some of whom have banded together to form the superhero team, Justice Forever, led by ex-mob enforcer Colonel Stars And Stripes (Jim Carrey). When Mindy promises Marcus to never don her Hit-Girl costume again, Kick-Ass decides to join the group for his super-team kicks.
Meanwhile, Chris D’Amico (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) swears bloody (literally) revenge on Kick-Ass for what he did to his family, and reinvents himself as the “world’s first supervillain” called The Mot ... er ... forget it, we’re not printing that name here.
As a result, Kick-Ass finds out that with great naivety and idealism come great and dire consequences, and that you don’t blow up a mob boss with a bazooka without grave repercussions.
Taylor-Johnson is much more assured this time around, and it is worth the ticket price just to watch Moretz as Hit-Girl (it will be pretty hard to watch her in the upcoming Carrie remake without thinking, “Come on, Carrie, you’re Hit-Girl! Kick their butts!”). Mintz-Plasse is also brilliant as the fiendish but weasel-y Mot ... er... Chris, and his super-villain team get the best lines and scenes of the movie.
The two best scenes in the movie are the ones that revel the most in the silliness and violence of the premise, accompanied by some of the most inspired choice of soundtrack music ever – Justice Forever’s first mission busting a prostitution den is accompanied by a gleeful When The Saints Go Marching In; while villain Mother Russia’s solo takedown of 10 police officers plays out to a rocking version of the Russian folk song Korobeiniki, or better known as the Tetris theme song.
Now, I loved the first movie. I thought it was funny, fresh, and even though it was violent and swear-y as hell, it had an infectious sense of fun that got me hooting with glee throughout the movie and leaving the cinema with a massive grin on my face.
Much like the first movie, the violence and swearing in Kick-Ass 2 is exaggerated and over-the-top, but something seems to be missing here somehow. Maybe it was because with Kick-Ass, there was still a certain sense of novelty and freshness in the way it went about its bloody business. Now that we’ve come to expect that level of hyperbolic violence, Kick-Ass 2 took a lot more to drive me into that state of gleeful shock and awe the way its predecessor did, and ended falling slightly short.
At times, it felt like director Jeff Wadlow was trying too hard to live up to his predecessor Matthew Vaughn.
It’s not that Kick-Ass 2 isn’t kick-ass, too. It’s still a lot of fun to watch, and Hit-Girl still ranks as one of the best on-screen interpretations of a comic superhero ever. If you liked the first one, chances are you’ll like the combination of fun, violence, and silliness of this one as well.
Just remember to leave the kids at home, ok?
Tags / Keywords:
Kick-Ass 2, Jeff Wadlow, Chloe Grace Moretz, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Morris Chestnut, Jim Carrey, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, movie review, entertainment
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