Friday, April 16, 2010

Review - Kick-Ass

A nerdy high school teen wonders why there have never been any real life superheroes and instead of just wondering he decides to become one. Dave Lizewski begins moonlighting as a super-hero for hire known as Kick-Ass. After Kick-Ass is caught on video helping a bystander from an attack, his status sky rockets placing him in the limelight and exposed to a level of villainy he never expected.

We all know that comic book movies are a huge trend in Hollywood. Everything from the mega titles all the way down to the lesser known books are being optioned into feature films. "Kick-Ass" was created by Mark Millar and John Romita Jr. and it isn't your typical superhero tale. The concept itself while being centered in reality is widely fantasy based and the movie directed by Matthew Vaughn perfectly matches that sentiment. You 100% believe that this story could actually happen and it most definitely feels real, but in actuality it is essentially a adult cartoon.

"Kick-Ass" is a blood-splattering dose of enthusiasm. From the opening through the rolling credits the film has riseable amount of energy that keeps the viewer rolling through a barrage of emotions. Loaded up with hysterical laughs, intoxicating action and a cheer inducing story that pays off numerous times over throughout the 117 minute thriller, 'Kick-Ass' is one of the most entertaining of the year. I really can't even begin to count how many moments this film has that either shock or awe you or both at the same time.

It is amazing how well director Matthew Vaughn brought the same level intensity that was in Mark Millar's original comics to the ultra-violent film. Reading through the pages of the original comic you would think that somewhere in the production process someone would have pushed real hard to water down the content. Making this film more geared towards kids. Thankfully that is not the case and every blood curdling and bone crushing moment has remained in the film. In actuality the comic and the film nearly mirror each other. Outside of a few minor alterations that will go unnoticed to most, the books and movie are one in the same. Which is a terribly good thing. I loved seeing Millar's and Romita Jr.'s work being honored.

The content itself must be addressed. "Kick-Ass" is a hard R rated movie. It is not intended for children at all. It is a movie that kids should definitely want to see, but should have to sneak the ability to do so. The film has an absurd amount of bad language along with a monumental amount of violence. The thing to remember is that all of the violence and crude language is crucial to the story and retaining the source materials same level of effectiveness.

The cast of "Kick-Ass" is exceptional. Most notable is Nicolas Cage and Chloe Moretz playing Big Daddy and Hit Girl. Two characters that ask Kick-Ass to join their cause in taking down a mobster. Nicolas Cage channels Adam West's Batman and his impersonation is endlessly entertaining. He even has a few deliveries that seem to fall right out of the original Batman television series. Moretz is probably the most shocking and hysterical character within "Kick-Ass." Her character has some of the most jaw dropping dialogue you will ever see a little girl say on screen and Moretz pulls it off as if she was an aged veteran. Aaron Johnson who plays Dave Lizewski aka Kick-Ass is also really good as the awkward teenager who becomes a badass. Should mention Christopher Mintz-Plasse in his role of Red Mist too, by the end of this movie I don't think anyone will be referring to him as McLovin' anymore, instead he will have a whole new nickname. Lastly, Mark Strong pulls off one mean mafia boss. Frank D'Amico is ruthless yet inept and Strong portrays it flawlessly.

"Kick-Ass" is a barrel of fun, if that barrel was filled with blood, foul language and pop culture references! It plays like a straight forward superhero movie, but at the same time comes across as a blood thirsty action. It is cartoony and highly serious, while being cutting edge and paying homage to all the great superhero films that inspired it. "Kick-Ass" is well worth your time and something that will be watched again and again.


kick-ass just plain awesome. there's just not many good comic adaptation nowadays.