So I watched Kingsman: The Secret Service…
Ever since Casino Royale and Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Trilogy, there’s been an introduction of hyper-realism into film. I’m not complaining, movie’s are taking themselves seriously and characters have become more realistic and this has given us some great action movies like Taken and John Wick. But I have to say sometimes it’s nice to see a movie that doesn’t take itself too seriously and throws realism out the window and gives us a good ol’ fashioned cool action movie. That’s what Kingsman offers.
Okay, basic plot: Eggsy (Taron Egerton) is the typical slacker with unfulfilled potential. Hary Hart (Collin Firth) is a gentleman spy who’s life was saved by Eggsy’s father and plans to repay this debt by helping Eggsy fulfill his underutilized potential. Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) is a maniac who’s hellbent on carrying out a genocide to cure the Earth of the virus that is humanity. I think you can see where this is going.
As I said earlier, this movie is just really cool. It’s a cross between the classic Sean Connery Bond movies and the hilarious Austin Power spoofs. The movie walks the line between the two types of movies really well and gives you cool spy gadgetry and espionage while also making fun of itself at times and giving you some unexpected laughs. This movie has a bit of self-awareness in it and there’s this great scene between Collin Firth and Sam Jackson where they talk about spy movies nowadays and how they are far too serious and how they both prefer the lighter movies of the past. I really enjoy when a movie shows some self-awareness and it was beautifully done in this movie.
The thing that I found most surprising about this movie was how much of a badass Collin Firth is. I mean, we all know he can act but seeing him kick ass was a real delight. He embodied the class and regal swagger that made Connery such a great Bond but also did it with an air of levity that helped keep the movie light and fun. Samuel L. Jackson really sparkles in this movie. He plays a, literally, colourful villain who believes the only way to save the world is to end it. He reminded me a lot of those classic Bond villains and the persona Jackson creates around the character leads to pure entertainment every time he’s on screen. It’s nice to see actors break free once and a while and just have fun with wacky characters. Taron Egerton does alright in this movie but I was looking for a little bit more from him but I think his lack of badassery was more down to the script and not his acting ability.
I think the thing I enjoyed most in this movie was Sofia Boutella as Valentine’s henchwoman, Gazelle. She had these cool prosthetic legs with blades on them and watching her slice people apart with them was amazing. This movie is actually quite graphic and I LOVED THAT! Movie’s are becoming a bit too PG lately, it was fun seeing people getting sliced apart.
The story isn’t exactly anything new and you can see it coming a mile away but it’s still really fun to watch. Director Matthew Vaughn really does a good job creating a well-paced and entertaining spy movie. Is it as cool as Bond? No. Is it as intelligent as Bourne? No. Is it as action-packed and original as Mission Impossible? Not really. But it isn’t trying to be any of these movies. It’s a throwback, a nod to a time when movies were allowed to be a little bit less realistic and a little more fun. I really enjoyed watching it.
Overall, Kingsman is a cool and fun action movie. It offers some great action and fight scenes but also has some humour to boot. It’s worth a trip to the cinema just so you can see the bold, albeit ridiculous, ending of the movie. Good fun. 7/10