Reviews

Kick-Ass 2

3

Earth’s sweariest heroes...

Back in 2010, Kick-Ass' potty-mouthed, kinetically violent and tabloid-baiting brand of super-heroism was a breath of irreverent fresh air. Adapting from Mark Millar/John Romita Jr’s have-a-go-heroes comic, Matthew Vaughn was able to carve out a new niche in an already over-crowded genre, delivering a capes-‘n’-tights romp that managed to screw with comic-book conventions as much as it celebrated them.
 
Yet while KA2 manages to tick all the OTT boxes (Naughty words! Decapitations! Gimp costumes!), it also suffers from an undeniably super-powered sophomore slump, and a tone every bit as imbalanced and crazily questionable as its protagonists.
 
Picking up weeks after the original’s jetpack-tastic, bazooka-blasting finale, it finds its characters facing a world where more and more civilians are fancying themselves as masked vigilantes. Dave/Kick-Ass (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) divides his time between buffing up and hitting the streets with budget super-team Justice Forever (led by an imposing Jim Carrey’s Big Daddy-alike, Colonel Colonel Stars And Stripes).
 
Blaming Dave for his dad’s rocket-related demise, Chris (Christopher Mintz-Plasse) adopts a subtle new alias – The Motherfucker – and embarks on a road to super-villainous revenge with new team in tow (the equally subtle Toxic Mega Cunts). Meanwhile, Mindy (an unavoidably older, but just as electrifying Chloë Grace Moretz) is forced to give up her hardcase hi-jinks as Hit-Girl in favour of a Pinocchio-like quest to become a 'real girl'.
 
Relative newcomer Jeff Wadlow (2008’s Never Back Down) proves an adequate choice to take over the writer/director reins from Vaughn, bringing a similarly vibrant energy that sustains the pace despite three decidedly separate sub-plots.

While there's memorable spectacle and some fun set-pieces (a suburban attack led by Olga Kurkulina’s Brigitte-Nielsen-on-crack Mother Russia is a highlight), Wadlow's helped massively by a returning lead trio who can confidently juggle comedy, drama and down-and-dirty ass-kickery.
 
Shame, then, that KA2 is tripped up by its wonky tone. For cleverly observed satirical barb or gritty, real-world dilemma, there's an equivalent, jarring misstep into lazy cliche. Case in point: Mindy's fun, super-bitchy Mean Girls-esque mini-adventure promises subversive smarts, but culminates with all the comedic originality and intellectual depth of a Grown Ups fart gag.
 
And while the original revelled in exploring the pathetic, rib-cracking realities of street-level superhero-ing, its sequel too often drifts into the staples its predecessor mocked (training montages and dead-parent-inspired character growth both get a look in).

Still, if some of the shock value’s gone, this is witty, wild and wired enough to be far from a super-zero.

Verdict:

A fun if sporadically schizoid return to one of the brighter, brasher comic-bookers of recent years. Now, about that Hit Girl spin-off...

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Film Details

User Reviews

    • Jareth64

      Aug 12th 2013, 11:49

      I knew it. You could tell by the trailer, this was never going to be 4/5 stuff. They shouldn't have bothered and left it as the brilliant Kick-a*s only. No need for more sequels, thanks.

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    • FBDHolloway

      Aug 12th 2013, 12:17

      Yup, I think that review just cemented my decision not to see it. Kick a*s is wildly irresponsibly good fun and I rather not stain that memory with a sequel that doesn't match the quality. I'm sure it'll do well and I wish them all the luck, but I'm out...

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    • FBDHolloway

      Aug 12th 2013, 12:19

      So your review can namecheck the m**********r and the Toxic Mega Cunts but the 'a*s' of the title gets automatically censored by your website if mentioned in the comments section? How trusting of you.

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    • smellyhands

      Aug 12th 2013, 13:07

      Can I say a*s, c**t or m**********r?

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    • smellyhands

      Aug 12th 2013, 13:51

      Michael Fassbender?

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    • Mattsimus

      Aug 12th 2013, 20:12

      Lol I think it looks pretty good.... Looking forward to it : D

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    • Ali1748

      Aug 12th 2013, 20:19

      Yeah I agree with Jareth the trailer just felt off to me. I'll wait for Kick-a*s 2 to come to Sky or Netflix.

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    • Mattsimus

      Aug 13th 2013, 21:19

      Ill wait till I get paid and see it at cinema!.... It's bound to be one of the better superhero / non superhero movies!

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    • DeWood11

      Aug 13th 2013, 23:26

      "A fun if sporadically schizoid return to one of the brighter, brasher comic-bookers of recent years. Now, about that Hit Girl spin-off..." Schizoid means reclusiveness or shyness jsyk

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    • 2ndchanceforkam

      Aug 14th 2013, 2:27

      The person who wrote this article really needs to do better research. It hasn't been weeks since Kick-a*s 1, it's been years. Mindy is now 15. In the original, she was about 12. Years have gone by in the story.

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    • 2ndchanceforkam

      Aug 14th 2013, 2:28

      FBDHolloway, you have to be a complete mental midget to not watch a movie just because some critic doesn't think it was great. Have a mind of your own. If you like the tv spots and trailers, go see it. Don't let critics dictate what you watch or don't watch.

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    • Chufferstud

      Aug 14th 2013, 10:51

      I do hate 3 star reviews, just seems like the reviewer is sitting on the fence and saying it's ok. Only makes we want to wait for it on dvd. In fact they should change ratings to reflect if you should watch it on the big screen or wait for dvd and save money. A poor film should have a 'Wait till it's on TV and free to watch', an average film should be 'Wait for the dvd, it's ok but not worth paying £12 to see' and for a good film 'Forget about paying the mortgage, go and see it again and again'! I may start up my own movie review site and do this...

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    • johndevoy

      Aug 15th 2013, 10:21

      Fass bender

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    • spid2411

      Aug 15th 2013, 13:51

      4

      Saw it - thought it was good. Actually preferred it to the first one myself and it is way better than the other comic book dross that been out this year (Iron Man 3, MOS). Liked the parodies of Watchmen and The Dark Knight Rises in there and the bit where she took revenge on the prom queen t***s was excellent. Go see.

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    • vincevega

      Aug 15th 2013, 14:29

      i predict a big flop at the box office.

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    • SaveFerris

      Aug 15th 2013, 18:10

      2

      Three stars is too generous, it's a terrible film that had the potential to be good. Had a great cast and great original to build on, but was squandered. Hire a c**p writer/director, get a c**p film, who knew? The script was hideously cheesy and clichéd, without one iota of the wit and ingenuity of the first. The Mean Girls sub-plot was pathetic, bizarrely stealing the sick-stick from Minority Report. Dave and Katie's sweet relationship, which provided a lot of heart in the original, was scrapped in a second like it meant nothing. Red Mist's character progression went from being a deluded dork to an out-and-out psychopath who doesn't flinch when a man is beheaded in front of him. Jim Carrey's Colonel Stars and Stripes is terribly underwritten and underused and makes little or no impact on the film. I could go on, but Jeez, what a let down.

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    • jamiecfc1

      Aug 16th 2013, 14:06

      Why exactly is it that whoever writes these films seems to think that chucking in words like f**k and (especially) c*nt makes it a better film? I've booked to see this film tomorrow but if all I'm going to get is a swear fest then I think I'll look elsewhere. World's End was pretty much the same, even Alan Partridge veered off in that direction.

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    • FBPBoland

      Aug 16th 2013, 14:59

      4

      Don't listen to the reviews. Go and see it. I loved the first one and I saw this the day it came out and I loved this one too. Kick a*s 2 definitely kicks a*s!

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    • theVman

      Aug 16th 2013, 17:04

      5

      I loved it. It the best film ive seen at the cinema this year so far. I agree that the in one part the huomor dishonors itself by turning into a simple cliched poo joke, but it only takes up a couple of seconds of screen time and has a bit of a pay off in the climax. I loved the comic books and i thought the Kick a*s 2 movie did enough to stay true the comic but changed enough so that you didnt always know what was going to happen. Mindys struggle to shake off hit-girl and enlist herself into "normal life" was handled better in the comic, but by no means was it awful in the film. I dont think Kick a*s 2 will generate any new fans. Whatever your feelings were towards the first film, they are likey to be reproduced exactly for the second. I thought it provide geniune laughs (which is so rare these days), didnt just re-hash the first one and actually to the characters to the next evolutionary step. the stroy pushed the boundaries of a 15 rating, and delivers some shocking moments, in terms of violent content, blood splatter, swearing and emotional connection to the characters. Chloe Grcae Mortez seems to grow stronger as an actress with every movie she makes and she was fantastic here. I just hope she doesnt go all Lindsay Lohan on us when she gets older.

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    • apo1978

      Aug 19th 2013, 12:52

      4

      I too enjoyed far more than I thought I would. Not as good as the first but still good fun, 7/10 from me.

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    • nick0

      Aug 20th 2013, 3:37

      4

      I thought film really good, for once a film actually where funny and violence actually works. Plus the swearing works in context with the film, if it happened in real life people would swear like it. hate when people moan about content of swearing and violence as you are aware of what it will be like before you see it. but on brighter note if they done kick a*s 3 it could work or hit girl spin off.

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    • matthewbrady

      Sep 11th 2013, 21:28

      4

      I enjoyed this movie

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    • SussexUK

      Sep 19th 2013, 16:44

      2

      Not good, forgot about it soon as i walked out, not a patch on the original.

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    • matthewbrady

      Oct 20th 2013, 2:29

      4

      Some critic's just need to shut up becasue on RT it got 2.8% out 100. this movie was nailed by critic's and I think this movie is a lot of fun. jim carry was good in the movie but not for long and some of the bloody in the movie looks to much CGI.

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    • dylanwright

      Jan 23rd 2014, 5:47

      2

      I made an account just because these people up here p**s me off. The first Kickass was amazing, but seriously I didn't even think about how dumb Mindy's high-school thing was until after reading reviews.. that isn't what's wrong with this movie!! Between the most awkward driving-gun-fight scene; that has drivers in the background continue going the same speed like they're in a Sienfield backdrop while a gun is not only being pointed at them, but has been fired out the window in their direction. Several times I may add. The ending had to be the lamest thing I have ever seen in my life, NO spoiler alerts I promise but seriously the end is such a politically correct sellout... murderers, especially the evil kind of villians they were building up wouldn't have reacted at the end the way they did. How can you have a 15-year old cutting people up, then sellout like that? Unbelievably disappointing. My fiance went to bed halfway though and got mad that she could still hear it, THAT bad.

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