Friday, February 13, 2015

Kingsman: The Secret Service
Releases February 13th, 2015
2 hr 9 mins
Rated R
Action/Adventure, Comedy


Director: Matthew Vaughn

Colin Firth as Harry Hart, codename "Galahad"
Taron Egerton as Gary Unwin/Eggsy
Michael Caine as Chester King, codename "Arthur"
Samuel L. Jackson as Richmond Valentine
Sofia Boutella as Gazelle
Jack Davenport as Lancelot
Sophie Cookson as Roxy
Mark Strong as Merlin
Mark Hamill as Professor James Arnold
Samantha Womack as Michelle
Richard Brake as The Interrogator
Hanna Alström as Scandinavian Princess
Bjørn Floberg as Scandinavian PM
Elton John
Lady Gaga as herself
David Beckham

Review by Stephen M.

Kingsman: The Secret Service based on a comic book of the same name plays out as such on the big screen with a lot of action, witty dialogue and attitude.  The film reminded me of Spy Kids but with teens as young Garyn Unwin also known as Eggsy (Taron Egerton) joins the secret elite spy agency Kingsman.  A directionless delinquent that is far too bright to be wasting his life at bars or in jail, he is taken under the wings of a Kingsman, Galahad (Colin Firth).  Galahad makes Eggsy his apprentice due to Eggsy's father having once saved him and others in the agency.  Eggsy goes through training with other cadets where only one can become a Kingsman.  His training abruptly cut short as the agency and the world must deal with the filthy rich and quirky Richmond Valentine (Samuel L. Jackson) and his plan to save the world.

One of the things you will like most about the film is the action and the dialogue.  Especially the dialogue between Colin Firth and Samuel Jackson's character as they poke fun at each other and the genre that the movie they are in.  While Samuel Jackson's characters usually do not differ much from movie to movie and you can find similarities between Richmond and his character from Spike Lee's Oldboy.  However Richmond here, with his adverse reaction to blood and violence makes for amusing scenes added with the witty lines along with Samuel's personality and his great delivery makes for an instant memorable classic villain.  As far as action, the scenes with his bodyguard, appropriately named Gazelle (Sofia Boutella) is amazing as she slices and dices with those blades for legs.  

There is little to fault about the movie.  Perhaps a little predictable?  Perhaps a bit cartoonish especially when you have the colorful explosions in one scene?  These are just minor things compared to the action and humor you get that gels so well together with some great actors in Colin Firth and Michael Caine.  The action in the church scene is not for everyone given the amount of violence, but the choreography to pull that off is phenomenal and puts Colin up on the action star pedestal which you would normally not even consider him.

Overall, I highly recommend the film though it is not suitable for younger children given the violence.  Look out for celebrity cameos towards the end in such quite frantic scenes in which you may miss them.  With the accents, sometimes it is a bit hard to understand what the lead Taron Egerton and the local bullies are saying.  I would have like to see more romantic development between Eggsy and Roxy (Sophie Cookson) who is also another phenomenal character.  Hopefully this won't be the last of the Kingsman but a beginning of a film franchise.


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